How Datta Infra became a key player in land acquisition for India’s emerging companies | Daily News Byte

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CXOtoday was involved in an exclusive interview with Mr. Varchasvi Gagal, Chief Executive Officer & Managing Director, Datta Infra

  1. Can you share a little about Datta’s journey so far?

Founded by Varchasvi Gagal, Datta Infra is one of the leading land developers and land developers in India to cater to the country’s top regeneration companies. It was founded in 1987 as an accounting and legal consulting company and operated in the area until 2019. From 2020 onwards, Varchasvi Gagal took over the company and aims to provide an organized and sustainable solution for the consolidation of land for renewable energy. market players. In addition to land acquisition and development, the company is a one-stop solution for land infrastructure development, transmission connectivity solutions, land acquisition, and solar energy, in India. It provides environmental and legal clearance as per state and central government policies, along with necessary permits as per local laws affecting the site. In addition, Datta Infra can also procure for customers’ land records of thirty years along with agriculture, revenue and title search, for land in sale. It also has a deep understanding of the land allocation laws of many states.

To date, the company has acquired more than 10,000 hectares, which has 2.4 GW of solar energy projects. Datta Infra also has an extensive land bank that is properly audited and available in the market. The company has led prestigious mega projects in India including federal and state governments. The company also provides direct and indirect services to PSUs including NHPC, National Thermal Power Corporation Limited and Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam.

  1. What are the challenges faced by Datta Infra in the land acquisition process?

Land acquisition is a complex process in India that often comes with many challenges at every level. Land is managed not only by ownership, but also by the nature of ownership in records and land. There are cases of gair khatedari and khatedari rights spread throughout the state of Rajasthan, which means that in the case of gair khatedari, the land is allotted but the khatedari (use) rights of the land do not belong to the owner. Therefore, in this case, the sale agreement/lease agreement cannot be taken for the said land until or unless you apply to the concerned government department and get a khatedari order for the same. The problem of encroachment and encroachment on villages, as well as effectively demarcating land, continues to be a difficult battle for developers. Local political population and multi-level group participation impose significant costs on developers.

Acquiring the right of way (ROW) for transmission lines is one of the biggest challenges that every developer faces. A 20-kilometer 440 kva power line requires at least 67-70 poles, which when combined with approval from the government and related agencies, as well as local authorities, creates more challenges. Another important issue that arises during the purchase of land is the determination of the nature of land ownership and the revenue law governing the ownership of land such as a village is generally considered under revenue when the record is managed by jamabandis usually posted on the land revenue website while. There are other villages under colonialism and records are only kept by the colonial department, which is currently not available online. The Colonial Office has its own set of permits and regulations that require advanced legal title search reports and licensing requirements.

When the place is shared by several villages, the land tenure is also managed by different local patwari and overlapping of land may become a serious problem to deal with in such cases. The overlap is caused by the constant redrawing of village boundaries combined with non-numerical property records. In order to reach an amicable solution between the villages, there must be a delegation from all over the country together. under the direction of the district information collection officer to ensure that the registered land is correct and comfortable. Settlement officers along with surveyors and drone operators assist in the process.

  1. What initiatives should the government take to ease the process of buying land in India?

The government should emphasize the digitization of land records to streamline the process. Determining the land easier and faster. Land acquisition for solar projects will be facilitated by identifying suitable project locations based on land type, use, resource potential, latitude, and availability of transmission infrastructure. Compilation of land records from the past 30 years can also help improve and streamline the land acquisition process.

The land registration has been changed between several contracts in the last 60 years, which attracted many conflicts between the previous sale and clearance. The government can encourage the creation of unique software with interactive AI that can support substations in clearing such problems. Issues such as GIB, Colonization, IGNP, Forestry, Environment, PACL and others must be clubbed effectively in the software for transparency and investor confidence. We are currently working on a similar software and plan for land banking in India by derisking complex property purchases. These initiatives can make the land acquisition process easier at the grassroots level.

  1. Briefly describe the land acquisition process in India and Datta Infra’s role in it?

Datta Infra provides organized and sustainable solutions for land consolidation to renewable energy players in the market. We determine the location near the substation of the state or the substation of the power grid in accordance with the specifications of the project. Once the land is selected, the company receives the necessary environmental and legal permits. The land acquisition process begins with a thorough examination of how much solar energy can be transferred in addition to cost estimates for a specific project. We take care of the total land, which is completed and given to the developer/investor. Mainly and fully implemented with ROW right of transmission. The transmission line is also used by Datta Infra after all clearances have been assessed

  1. What are the major clients that Datta Infra has worked with so far? Also, please mention the major projects in the pipeline for 2023.

The company has led prestigious mega projects in India including federal and state governments. Among its important customers are Tathagata energy And Mount Litera Zee School. The company also provides indirect services to PSUs including National Thermal Power Corporation Limited, National Hydro Power Corporation and Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam. We are executing 2 GW of EPC portion for MultiNational companies and reputed Indian businesses along with Maharatna PSU’s.

  1. How many projects has Datta Infra done so far? Also, please state the location of the project and the acres of land acquired as well.

Some of the major projects completed by Datta Infra so far:

  • CPSU 1 – 300 MW – Developer NTPC
  • CPSU 2 – 250 MW – Developer NTPC
  • 225 MW TATA POWER GREEN (Developer) Mixed
  • 110 MW KSEB Developer
  • Orissa – 50 MW private farm
  • Chattisgarh – 100 MW PPA with transmission line
  • Tamil Nadu – 110 MW park with connection and transmission system
  • Gujarat – 100 MW
  • Maharashtra – 300 MW
  • Ongoing project of 1 GW for SJVN with transmission line.
  • 300 MW – NHPC at Bikaner, Rajasthan
  • Lease 1500 hectares of land to TATA Power
  1. With more emphasis on green energy, the renewable energy sector has developed. How many years ago?

India’s renewable sector has been developing rapidly over the years. The energy sector is expected to increase significantly due to the increasing population size and Huge energy growth potential in India. The country aims to achieve zero carbon emissions by 2070 and meet 50% of its electricity needs from renewable resources within 2030. According to the IBEF report, India ranked 4th in wind energy, 5th in solar energy, and 4th in renewable electricity installation capacity in 2020. 15.92% between 2016-22. With the government’s major policy initiatives, the renewable energy sector has become a sector which has good results for investors. India will see huge investment and huge growth in the coming years. Strong demand, competitive advantage, and increased investment along with a flexible policy framework indicate a bright future for the renewable energy sector in the coming years.

  1. Please share the future expansion plans of Datta Infra for the year 2023

Datta Infra will expand its base to South India with expertise in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra. We will increase our infrastructure machinery to technological changes such as ramming and monopole implementation. We also have investments in grid and substation design and implementation. . We are developing a dedicated website network for the Hybrid RTC model which will be supported by a private PPA for our customers.

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