Only 28k house­holds left to be elec­tri­fied

Tar­get Of 2.5Cr House­holds To Be Met By Feb-End

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - TIMES NATION - TIMES NEWS NET­WORK

New Delhi: Just about 28,500 or 0.1% of house­holds in a clutch of five dis­tricts across the coun­try re­main un­elec­tri­fied amid ex­pec­ta­tion that full elec­tri­fi­ca­tion will be com­pleted by the month-end, bring­ing to con­clu­sion an am­bi­tious project to take elec­tric­ity to all vil­lages.

Data on the gov­ern­ment web­site showed that around 8,500 house­holds were yet to be elec­tri­fied in Ra­jasthan’s Udaipur dis­trict. Sim­i­larly, in Ch­hat­tis­garh, around 20,000 house­holds need to be pro­vided con­nec­tions in Bi­japur, Narayan­pur, Dan­te­wada and Sukma, which are se­verely hit by Left-wing ex­trem­ism. The re­main­ing house­holds are spread over 553 vil­lages.

The overall pace of the scheme’s tar­get to de­liver elec­tric­ity con­nec­tions to 2.5 crore house­holds in­di­cates that the task may be com­plete well be­fore the March dead­line. This will mark a major step af­ter the elec­tri­fi­ca­tion of 19,614 vil­lages.

The de­ci­sion to aim for elec­tri­fi­ca­tion of all will­ing house­holds was taken af­ter some de­lib­er­a­tion, ac­cord­ing to an of­fi­cial who said that ini­tially the plan was to set all mo­hal­las or lo­cal­i­ties in a town or vil­lage as the tar­get. But this would have missed out on house­holds and af­ter more de­lib­er­a­tions, PM Naren­dra Modi gave the nod for a much more chal­leng­ing goal.

“We have done over 2.48 crore house­holds so far and we hope to meet the tar­get in the next 10-12 days,” said an of­fi­cial. Sources said power min­is­ter R K Singh has been in con­tact with state gov­ern­ments to en­sure all house­holds are pro­vided con­nec­tions at the ear­li­est. He has spo­ken to CMs, ask­ing them to help meet the house­hold elec­tri­fi­ca­tion tar­gets and pre­vent their states from be­ing out­liers.

Elec­tri­fi­ca­tion of all house­holds un­der PM Saub­hagya scheme is a flag­ship pro­gramme of the Modi gov­ern­ment, which had ad­vanced the dead­line to De­cem­ber but of­fi­cials said they are well on their way to meet the tar­get be­fore the orig­i­nal dead­line of March. When the scheme started, there were around 4 crore un­elec­tri­fied house­holds in the coun­try.

The high­est num­ber was in UP, which now claims to have pro­vided con­nec­tions to all house­holds that came for­ward. “We have changed the en­tire elec­tri­fi­ca­tion lex­i­con. If it was still reaching out to vil­lages or mo­hal­las, then many house­holds would have been left be­hind de­spite the gov­ern­ment sink­ing in large amount of funds,” said an of­fi­cial.

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