ISLAMABAD - After exhausting all options to eliminate loadshedding by power generation and power management, government will now buy electricity from Rental Power Projects. In this regard, Nepra on Thursday formally accepted applications from the Reshma Power Generation Private Limited and Gulf Powegen.

Reshma Power Generation Private Limited has applied for the 96.96 megawatts power project located at 4.5 kilometers Link Manga-Riwind Road, Raiwind, District Kasur.

In application to grant licence, RPG has stated that it submitted its bid on February 16, 2009 to set up 201.30MW thermal power generation facility, for the period of five years, after government of Pakistan initiated a project through Ministry of Water and Power and PPIB, for fast track rental projects through international competitive bidding.  It further stated that under five years rental services contract, the company commenced trial production on November 16, 2010. The company discontinued the electricity supply after the judgment of Supreme Court in RPPs case.

RPG has pleaded that it has settled its all liabilities through an agreement and NAB issued a clearance letter in favour of company. It said that in view of the readily available idle capacity and the prevailing shortage of electricity in the country, the company applies for the generation licence.

The other company is Gulf Powegen Private Limited, formerly known as Gulf Rental Power Private Limited.

GPPL has applied for 84 MW power generation licence.

According to the documents, the consortium comprising Al-Jomaih Holding Company, and Haseeb Khan submitted a proposal for an RFO Fired used reciprocating Engine based simple cycle thermal power plant, previously.

This plant has a net capacity of 62 MW and to be set up in area of Gujranwala Electric Supply Company (Gepco). The company will use diesel engines manufactured by China, namely three MAN- Diesel Engines, of 11.9 MW capacity each, with Siemens Alternators, Two man Diesel Engines of 12.5 MW capacity, and Two Wartsial Diesel engines with power generation capacity of 11.52 MW, each.

This rental power company also claims that after the clearance from NAB, cases against GRPPL (New name GPPL), its owners, sponsors or employees have been closed and the Supreme Court judgment does not debar GRPPL to contract or operate the plant and sell its production to government of Pakistan under any other scheme. The previous agreement with RPPs was initiated by Government of Pakistan and was routed to Nepra through Ministry of Water and Power and PPIB. This time how the mechanism would work, it is still unclear.

It was learnt that Nepra has accepted the applications from previous RPPs on the directions of high-ups. After the trial of RPPs case in Supreme Court what are the new grounds that Nepra was accommodating RPPs again, this was unknown as nobody from Nepra commented on the issue. It was learnt that Nepra was under tremendous pressure to accommodate government demands otherwise whole department would be restructured. According to sources, the present staff is non-technical and even Nepra boss does not have required technical qualifications for the post. Recently, this was reported that government was considering re-structuring the whole department and appointing qualified and technical staff for the regulatory authority.

Spokesperson Safeer Hussain did not respond to calls and SMS, and did not respond to the allegations on Nepra staff qualifications. During a recent meeting of Senate Standing Committee on Water and Power, the ministry officials had admitted that they were planning to buy electricity from notorious rental power providers, but said that this time new agreement would be implemented. Does the RPPs submitted documents according to new conditions, nobody from Nepra answered the question. No official from Ministry of Water and Power was available to comment on the issue.