With an aim to promote use of solar power among farmers, the government is all set to launch Rs 1.4 crore KUSUM scheme next month. “The KUSUM (Kisan Urja Suraksha Evam Utthaan Mahaabhiyan) will be implemented in July. Under this scheme farmers would be provided with solar water pumps,” PTI reported citing R K Singh, minister of power and new & renewable energy. While showcasing achievements of the government in the last four years, minister said that crore families targeted under the SAUBHAGYA scheme would get electricity connections by December, ahead of the March 2019 deadline.
Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan (KUSUM)’ provides for:
1)Installation of grid-connected solar power plants each of capacity up to 2 MW in the rural areas;
2)Installation of standalone off-grid solar water pumps to fulfill irrigation needs of farmers not connected to grid;
3)Solarisation of existing grid-connected agriculture pumps to make farmers independent of grid supply and also enable them to sell surplus solar power generated to DISCOM and get extra income; and
4)Solarisation of tube-wells and lift irrigation projects of Government sector.
The government has planned to provide 27.5 lakh solar pumps (17.50 lakh standalone + 10 Lakh Grid-connected) under the scheme. It will help farmers install total 10 GW of Solar Power Plants of intermediate capacity of 0.5 to 2 MW each. It also envisages 50,000 Grid-connected tube-wells/lift irrigation and drinking water projects. Singh also gave assurance about bringing the hydro power policy and expressed hope to roll out the Rs 16,000 crore plan for beleaguered hydro power capacities in the country.
Last four year achievements
On the achievements of his government, PTI reported RK Singh saying: “Last four years have been path breaking. You compare it with what happened in last 48 years. I asked my ministries to compare the 48 years and our 4 years. The comparison was an eye opener.” He also said: “In the 48 years before 2014, the pace of capacity addition in generation was about 4,800 MW per year. In our 48 months, the pace of capacity addition was about 24000 MW per year. That is 4.8 times more. We added One lakh MW of generation capacity in four years.”