Haryana government has announced to launch a voluntary scheme ‘Mhara Gaon – Jagmag Gaon’, aimed at providing 24-hour uninterrupted power supply to rural domestic consumers and improving electricity bill collections in order to reduce ‘huge’ accumulated losses of power utilities. Announcing the scheme, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar said the state has become first in the country to launch such an ‘innovative’ scheme.
Special emphasis is being laid to generate renewable energy by installing solar power plants on roof tops. The government has set a target to generate 400 MW renewable energy by the year 2020, he said.
The scheme is also aimed at further strengthening the distribution network system for the convenience of the people, he said. Explaining the scheme, the Chief Minister said at present rural consumers were being supplied electricity for only 12 hours daily. In the first phase of the scheme, 83 feeders have been identified covering 310 villages having minimum line losses between 25 to 70 per cent and which have made payment of their electricity bills, he said.
“Power supply would be ensured for 15 hours in these villages from today onwards instead of 12 hour power supply they were getting at present. The consumers in these 310 villages falling under these 83 feeders would now be urged to install their meters outside their houses and get their old electricity wires replaced with insulated wires”, the chief minister said.
“If this happens, power supply in these villages would then be increased by three more hours and these would be supplied power for 18 hours. In the next step, the power supply would be further increased to 21 hours on those feeders where the payment of bills would cross the mark of 90 per cent,” he said.
Finally, the feeders where the outstanding amount of electricity bills has been paid in five equal instalments, their penalty and interest would be waived off and power supply for 24 hours would be ensured on those feeders, he said. The Chief Minister said this scheme will also be implemented in other villages.
Notably, state-owned power utilities have accumulated losses to the tune of Rs 24,000 crore. The Chief Minister said that ‘Bijli Panchayat’ would also be organized in all villages falling under such feeders. The officers of Electricity department would also be present in these panchayats who would resolve the complaints of consumers on the spot.
Complaints like replacement of meters, electricity wire, instalment of new poles and enhancement of load would be resolved within a week, the chief minister said. Apart from this, a nodal officer of the level of a Junior Engineer would also be appointed on every feeder, who would coordinate various activities at village level to ensure the effective implementation of the scheme, he added.
According to PTI, he said under the scheme the electricity bills would depict the information like line losses on the particular feeder and pending amount of electricity bill so as to ensure transparency. In case, if any consumer cites any difference in the data, the department as well as officials concerned would be held accountable for the same.
He disclosed that state would bear an additional expenditure of Rs 15 to 20 lakh per village for implementation of this scheme. Khattar said that the state government will continue to supply eight hours electricity to agriculture tubewells. The Chief Minister claimed that adequate electricity was available in the state to meet the present requirement. But with the implementation of this scheme, the requirement of electricity would go further up and the government has already made elaborate arrangements for meeting the future power demands.
Besides, strengthening the power infrastructure, 800 MW super critical thermal plant is being set up at Panipat to replace the existing obsolete units each of 110 MW. Similarly, 800 MW super critical thermal power plant would also be established at Yamunanagar, he said. In addition, under the Central Government Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana, a programme costing Rs 2,000 crore has been launched for further strengthening distribution system in the state.
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