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CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? SoA @ 80 TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital This scant respect for Law Focus on quality of power - its only around 170-180V L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… Return to king coal for urea... Shale gas and its shallow future Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra Shanti and Sadhana through Music Don’t seem to feel the pulse… A welcome initiative by the judiciary Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal Welcome focus on core competence Tribute TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai Welcome GST Kulandai was a giant Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... When small is no larger beautiful.. Mersal magnified Why this malaise in medical education? An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... Discoms deserve better… Gas is the way forward Polls and promises Rahman at CIC Sweet news for TN sugar mills A think tank for Chennai F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing Modi and the lady Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! Quality silica from Neyveli Breaththrough in malaria control Build close rapport with business leaders Cutting the nose to spite the face Noble nonagenarians... Wise Presidents Delhi Chalo... Strengthen the base... TIAM turns a full cycle L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami Road development slows down Tribute – UCAL Selvan… Where a state respects its litterateurs… How Air-India loses customs... Valli, they are more marginalised When the President was rendered homeless… Revving up the manufacturing sector Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health Vibrant Gujarat More Shakti to resource mobilisation... Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi A glass full of corruption Solar thermal shines… Silver Years of Madras Musings PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals Sweeter prospects for sugar The why of tax incentives EEC at the National Media Centre When nations steal growth from one another… A more liberated TN… Engineering seats go abegging The rise and rise of KCP A friendly business group The brown list of Venkitaramanan Protest masters... Banning booze... Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model Preserving for the future Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna EVM is tamper-proof Tough task taking states together Intellectual of rare qualities More tributes to GR Delhi returns to BJP Another Indian music maestro at the UN Shipping woes of Chennai companies Excel Generators provide the vital back-up Pharma – overdose of copying Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research Sri Lanka votes for change Modi storms Silicon Valley Robber barons everywhere Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks Revive development banks... Funding the un-funded Boy, can you beat these? For whom the bell tolls? Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu Make standards certification mandatory... Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik An inexplicable neglect Airlines in India: cost and space IPL - no surprise this scam Contrarian cousins Wanted: a second airport for Chennai No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu When online building permits work…. Kinetic Karnataka Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! Mu Sigma – is no more Roaring Ro-Ro facility Cement prices continue to rise… Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... The star of Spencers is no more WTO Meet: resolved to meet again Muffled voices for merit… West Bengal: mindless malignancy The Jan Dhan bonanza All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Auto components surge… Russi Mody – a tribute Fortune for Indian Airlines The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more Which side are you, Montek? Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? Nuclear power at the nucleus Increasing non co-operation of state leaders The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ Paytm karo... Streamlining mandatory third party cover Marketing expert Balagopal is no more Five star activism stalls development activity Where is Rajaji? London, London Narayan Whistle-Stop Tour of Raghuram Rajan Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel TELANGANA at last…BUT CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines TGS- The king storyteller More Shakthi to Das’ elbow Quality education through the PPP mode When Ratan Tata visited SRM Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School Tax agriculture Gay abandon in pricing Align crops to agro climate endowments… Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL Things happen by accident and not by design... Plummeting profits of PSBs Computation of GDP – conundrums continue The rise and fall of Annamalai University Put expensive assets created to use... Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel Small units prefers to remain small... Fuel for thought Readers' Mail An enemy’s enemy is a friend Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai Editor's Says TN – agglomerate land holdings without alienating ownership The power-full Hindujas Multi-faceted Venkat A yen for wastage… Kudos to NDTV... Tribute – M V Murugappan He continues the focus on social amelioration Convulsions in The Hindu A rich pool of talent not utilised…. Moily’s bold thrust MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways The Gulf aviation boom PC’s preference for professionals Adharma of opposition politics Demise of a media baron... Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated When TN politicians can emulate Kerala's No Maha Koottani in TN... GNS - 100: our first subscriber Delhi is distant He saved millions from starvation... Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities Alexa – Talking Wikipedia Medical costs hit the roof... Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt The nuclear option Tatas moving out of urea production... More heat than light Haul over the coal A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... Secularism and anti-Hinduism …and of a popular trade leader Should we change the official year? Delhi is distant… Poor quality of university VCs A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Come elections, come advertisements... Waning interest in public discussions… Recognition to role of NBFCs.... Towards speedy justice New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… IPL type auction for VCs? Measuring roof tops in terms of KW/MW The few handicaps... Remembering Indira Sivasailam... Of course, Gujarat is vibrant Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... Fall in crude prices help in oil sector reform ONGC at KG Basin No engine for this car Godspeed, Chief Minister JJ Fortune 500 review Lalu’s envy, India’s pride Poor representation for Kerala and TN in Cabinet There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! CRS, a jewel among managers, is no more. Editor's Notes China invests in India A professional at the helm of IRDA... Building loyalty through the stomach B H Kothari - a tribute The sea- saw battle continues... Tatas moving out of urea production... IAS invades NDDB... A proud Madrasi Music happens For whom the MIDS bell tolls? Maximising the micro pricing … Telangana in top gear… Parliament in paralysis... The Swadeshi Trump Why land prices zoom in TN? Solar, solar everywhere … GM Technology at last! The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu CII projects higher growth… The balancing act Making ‘my Amaravati’... Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked
 
Solar, solar everywhere …

There is a welcome thrust on solar power. It assumed special significance in the context of the persistent and widespread shortage of power. It was most pronounced in Tamil Nadu in 2012 when Tamil Nadu, save Chennai, was  subjected to 16 hours plus of power cuts.  With the abundant availability of sunlight it makes economic sense to harness solar power. The state promptly came out with an attractive policy on solar power by providing liberal incentives.

IE walked the talk without waiting for the firming up of the policy or the incentives.  It set up a 25 KW rooftop solar power facility over Economist House without availing itself of the promised subsidies. Happily, there has been widespread interest in this facility:  like the promotion of wind energy and co-generation facility for sugar mills, the liberal tax concessions such as full depreciation of the investment have attracted handsome investments.

S Seetharaman, Chairman and Managing Director, Super Auto Forge Pvt Ltd (SAF), cited the initiative taken by his company: along with a few other members of the cold forge fraternity, SAF has set up a solar power facility in the dry Ramanathapuram district through Mahindras for 1 MW to start with and plans to increase it to around 7 MW Seetharaman explained the efficient and the fast work done by Mahindras in setting up the facility in less than three months. He put the cost around Rs 7 crore per MW. What a drop from the Rs 20 crore per MW a couple of years ago!

However, a lot remains to be done: with multiple agencies involved, there is need for clarity on the rules and jurisdiction.  A single window setup to clear the applications will help. There is also a mushrooming of service providers with varying degrees of expertise.

Wind energy development was also launched with great expectations by offering depreciation and other incentives. However, over time, the investors have come to grief. Today, there is no assured off-take of wind energy generation at fair price. And large capacities remain idle owing to problems of maintenance, evacuation and prompt payments. The Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission (TNERC) can help. But unfortunately, right from inception, it has been bedeviled with problems of suitable experts to man top posts like chairman and members. Even now, the TNERC has no chairman. The state was reluctant to set up the commission for long and senior retired bureaucrats like K Venkatesan declined the offer to join the TNERC.

In the interest of long-term sustainability of non-conventional renewable energy, the state would do well to strengthen TNERC and also frame healthy and fair rules. More importantly, implement these in a transparent manner.

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