ISLAMABAD: Crying foul at floating the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) rules which do not allow any public procurement without any competitive bidding, a PPP MPA from Okara moved the Supreme Court, challenging the award of contract for the development of 900mw solar park in Cholistan to a Chinese firm.
PPP MPA Khurram Jehangir Wattoo requested the court to order cancellation of a letter of interest issued to Chinese Zoenergy company for funding Quaid-i-Azam solar park project in Cholistan, about 30km from Bahawalpur.
The solar energy park said to be the biggest in the world, will be spread over an area of 5,000 acres of land.
The petitioner requested the court to hold people concerned including Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif accountable for allegedly floating rules.
In the petition, Mr Wattoo submitted that the project was being developed in violation of PPRA rules which did not allow any public procurement without competitive bidding. He claimed that after completion of the project, roads, canal water, security paraphernalia, land and allied infrastructure would be run entirely on taxpayers’ money.
The petitioner cited the March 2012 Supreme Court judgment which scrapped the rental power project, although unsolicited licences had been issued to only two firms to install power plants.
He said that in the Gaddani power park project the Balochistan government and a federal ministry were involved in inviting investment proposals, as far as Quaid-i-Azam solar park was concerned, the Punjab government did not follow the rules.
He cited that the how the Punjab government could decide to induct 900MW in one go when the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority had announced a solar tariff for up to 50MW plants.
Referring to technical issues, the petitioner said nowhere in the world a solar power plant of 900MW had been set up. Even the United States has only 250MW plant and it is facing huge technical problems because of fluctuating frequency of solar generation and its integration with the national grid.
The petitioner said Pakistan was yet to integrate even one solar megawatt with the national grid whereas Punjab had gone for 900MW in one go.