Shimla: To make a foray into thermal power generation, chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal on Friday made State Industrial Development Corporation Limited (SIDC) the nodal agency to secure captive coal mines for the union coal ministry.
Presiding over a board meet of SIDC, the chief minister said that SIDC would be responsible for negotiating the states case with the centre to get a coal pit. “thereafter companies engaged in thermal power generation would be roped to set up plant that could meet the states energy needs. However preference would be given to National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), he added.
He said that a thermal plant would help the state to meet additional power needs especially in winters when hydro generation drops substantially
The government was also exploring possibilities to generate solar and wind power to add to the power grid, said Dhumal.
To promote entrepreneurship among first generation businesses, SIDC would finance export oriented medicinal and aromatic plants herbal extraction projects, the chief minister said.
A term loan of Rs 2.25 crore to Himachal Phytochem project would produce herbal extracts aescin, L-Dopa, Hypericin and Podophylotoxin which are based on local produce and create a market for farmers engaged in herbal cultivation.
The board approved merger of Nahan Foundary Limited with HP State Industrial Development Corporation.
The board also made changes in industrial plot allotment process. Instead of direct allotment they would now be made through public auction, a SIDC spokesman stated.