Towards efforts on powering up world’s more than 15% of the population – Indian Power Sector is evolving almost every day. After enactment of Electricity Act 2013 (EA 2013), a lot has changed around each of the aspects of the Sector. Having proactive roles of ministry, CEA, regulatory commissions, load dispatch centres, have brought a great amount of dynamism in all the public/private players engaged in power generation, distribution, transmission and trading. Like all across the globe here in India also Power Sector is a regulated sector, i.e. Government body enacts the framework for operation, which is to be adhered by all the stakeholders.
Post EA 2013, if we look at the Power Sector, it structures somewhat as below:
- Ministry of Power (MoP) – the apex government agency, having variety of departments and bodies to take care of nitty-gritty of the overall sector activities and designated PSUs beneath
- Central Electricity Authority (CEA) – the technical arm of the ministry that empowers ministry on technical aspects of the schemes and policies being introduced
- Central / State Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC/SERC) – the central / state level regulatory authority that regulates tariff, issues licenses, improves access to information, levy fees, enforce standards, and performance certain advisory functions to Ministry of Power
- Appellate Tribunal for Electricity (APTEL) – the legal body that resolves disputes between parties in parallel to high court
- State Electricity Boards (SEBs) – erstwhile SEBs were divided into followings for the efficient operation and enhancement
- Generation Company (GenCo) – designated for generation of electricity and selling the same
- Transmission Company (TransCom) – licensed to build interstate / inter-state transmission infrastructure
- Distribution Company (DISCOM) – licensed to sell electricity being purchased from the generating companies or exchange to the variety of consumers
- Power Trading Company – licensed to buy and sell electricity on the market within the set framework
- Central / State Transmission Utility (CTU/STU) – empowered to enhance transmission network within the country/state; currently, Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd (PGCIL) is designated as a CTU
- Load Dispatch Centres (NLDC/RLDC/SLDC) – government body to maintain optimum scheduling and despatch of electricity and monitor/maintain grid operation/account by virtue of real-time grid operations and control
- Regional Power Committees (RPCs) – concerning the stability and smooth operation of the integrated grid and economy
Entire grid operation is driven on a complex but an integrated structure, broadly defined by:
- CEA – on technical aspects of the Generation / Transmission / Distribution and national level data compilation
- CERC – on building regulatory framework for the most economical and efficient resource utilisation, also by intervening on disputes
- APTEL – on addressing power sector related issues in parallel, by reducing the burden on the overall judiciary system by virtue of empowered technical members
EA 2013, National Electricity Policy, National Tariff Policy, Rural Electrification Policies, Hydro Power Policies, Mega Power Projects & Policies, etc. – are yet to drive this section. In the subsequent posts, we shall elaborate more on how all aforesaid entities do work under the ambit of different policies published by the MoP.
Though Renewable Energy is an integral part of the Power Sector, sensing the need of developing and promoting Non-Conventional Energy, in 2006 Ministry of New and Renewable Energy was built.