Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday invited the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) to take up a big challenge. On the occasion of Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay’s birth anniversary, Modi challenged the staff of ONGC to work towards making an efficient electric chulha (stove), which would enable cooking through the use of electricity.
According to Modi, “This innovation would, in one stroke, significantly impact the nation’s dependence on imported fuel.” The PM said, “While the world is working towards electric cars, in India, in addition to electric cars, electric stoves would go a long way in meeting the needs of the people.”
The Prime Minister also asked ONGC to invite startups and youth to innovate in this field.
The PM put up this challenge to ONGC while addressing officers and staff of ONGC at a function to mark the launch of SAUBHAGYA Scheme, a plan to provide free electricity to all poor households across the country.
On the occasion, Modi said that free electricity connections will be provided to the 4 crore out of 25 crore hosueholds which are still without electricity.
Quoting Thomas Edison, the inventor of electricity, Modi said, “We will make electricity so cheap that only the rich will burn candles.” However, in India, poor still have to burn candles, Modi said, adding the new scheme is to help eliminate darkness in the lives of 4 crore households without electricity.
Total outlay of the project is Rs. 16, 320 crore while the Gross Budgetary Support (GBS) is Rs. 12,320 crore.
In 2015, Modi had set a target of 1,000 days for electrifying the 18,452 villages that did not have electricity connection. On Monday, Modi said the government will electrify 2,986 remaining villages by December 2017 to help take power to all households by December 2018.