Power Minister Piyush Goyal Saturday said that the government was planning a massive overhaul of the power sector by bringing in a series of amendments to the Electricity Act 2003 in the current session of Parliament.“I am looking at a billion tonne coal production, 100 GW of solar power capacity and investments of about $50 billion in the transmission and distribution segment in the next five years,” Goyal said while addressing the Confederation of Indian Industry's(CII) national council meet here Saturday.Goyal said that in a bid to boost renewable energy which is targeted to be 15 percent of the energy mix by 2020, the government is set to impose stringent penalties on errant discoms who fail to meet renewable purchase obligations. This, according to Goyal, will be clubbed with a renewable obligation on generators by which all conventional power producers like NTPC will have to account for some proportion of renewable power.The minister pointed out the need to revive gas-based power projects and also spoke in detail about the reforms taken to address coal supply.
Goyal further said that reforms are also being planned in the distribution companies. He said that the government is coming up with provisions whereby the entire discom set up will be unbundled. "While there will be a government distributor of power to ensure that power is provided to the weaker sections of society, competition will be introduced and a private sector role in the sector," Goyal said.Talking about the RE-INVEST initiative of the ministry of new and renewable energy Goyal said the government is hoping to come forward with a clear cut road map on how to achieve the 100 GW solar power target at RE-INVEST which is scheduled in February 2015. CII president Ajay S. Shriram said that the first big reform has been in the coal sector where a change in the 40 year story has been undertaken with one stroke of legislation.