Himachal Court Stalls Agreement Signing With Dutch Hydel Generation Firm

Shimla:The Himachal High Court on Thursday asked to the state government to withhold signing of the pre-implementation agreement (PIA) for two mega projects handed out to Netherlands based company Brakel Corporation till the 14th May, when the case comes up for another hearing.

Brakel was allotted the Jangi – Thopan and Thopan – Powari (960 MW) hydro project on Satluj River thorough international competitive bidding in December 2006 on conditions that the company offering to pay the highest upfront would be handed the projects.

The condition also made it mandatory that before signing of the MOU, the company needed to pay up 50 percent of the upfront money.

However, since Brakel Kinnaur Power Company, the Indian arm of the Dutch firm was not able to pay the upfront money on time and Reliance Energy, a rival bidding company took the matter to court.

The petitioner company sought relief that the project allocation to Brakel be canceled for violating of payment conditions and instead the second highest bidding company be allotted the project on a matching bid basis.

Separately, the government had served notice on Brakel about not meeting the upfront money payment terms and other conditions which were not agreeable to the state.

The Dutch firm in February not only deposited Rs 173 Cr due but recently also paid up the interest for late payments. The government and Brakel were preparing to sing a pre-implementation agreement, which the court today withheld till 14 May, on the plea of the petitioner company.

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