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Cover Story | April 2016

39 un-electrified remote villages to be powered by solar

Rajkumar S Biradar, | Executive Engineer-2, EMC, Energy Department, Karnataka

Did you try to adopt any renewable technologies to address electrification of rural or remote areas? What were the outcomes and how do you want to adapt them in the current scenario?
Yes. Presently all 39 un-electrified villages in the State which are located in remote forest area are proposed to be electrified through stand alone solar system. At present, the tender is under process.

What are the problems in reaching power to remote areas through traditional means and that of rooftop/field-based solar or other renewable sources?
The Main problems are:
1. Obtaining Forest Clearance.
2. High cost of the project.
3. Maintenance.

How many villages or hamlets are yet to be electrified in the state and by when you are planning to achieve electrification of all these villages?
At present, there are 39 un-electrified villages in the State. 30 villages under HESCOM are proposed for electrification through stand alone system under DDUGJY Scheme and remaining 09 villages (6 in CESC and 3 in MESCOM) are proposed for electrification under DDG scheme.

What are the strategies that have paid off and what are the ones that have failed to give expected outcomes in rural electrification in the past? What are the latest trends or technologies you would like to adopt in the years to come?
Karnataka is one of the leading states in the country, which has successfully implemented the RGGVY scheme.

What is the pace of implementation of rural electrification initiatives over the last five years and what are your future plans?
Rural Electrification intiatives over last five years:
1. Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana 11th Plan:
The Scheme was implemented from 2006-07 and under this scheme 16 un-electrified villages, 3714 habitations and 2,66,075 BPL households have been provided with electricity at free of cost.
2. Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana 12th Plan:
The Scheme was implemented from 2013-14 and under this scheme it is targeted to electrify 1,30,785 BPL households. Presently, 14,216 BPL households have been provided with electricity at free of cost. Balance works are in progress.
3. Decentralised Distributed Generation:
For the areas where electrification is not possible from conventional grid, the Government of India under Decentralized Distributed Generation (DDG) of RGGVY Scheme has sanctioned 93 projects for electrification of habitations through off-grid solutions.
Electrification of 9 un-electrified villages, 144 hamlets and 3993 BPL households under this scheme is in progress.
Future Plans:
Deendayal Updadhyaya Gram Jyothi Yojana (DDUGJY):
Under this plan, it is proposed to electrify 30 un-electrified villages in Uttara Kannada and Belagavi Districts of HESCOM and electrify 8,02,856 rural households (including 4,96,636 BPL households) with necessary infrastructure.

What is the kind of financial support available to the states in implementing DDUGJY/RGGVY? Would you like to suggest any other means for financing in the light of new technologies?
Under erstwhile RGGVY, 90 per cent of the project cost was funded by Central Government as grant and 10 per cent as loan.
Under DDUGJY the funding mechanism is as below:
Grant from GOI : 60%
Discom Contribution: 10%
Loan (FIs/Banks): 30%
Additional Grant from GOI onachievement of prescribed
milestones: 50% of total loan
component i.e., 15%
Maximum Grant by GOI : 75%

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