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