Metering farm pump sets to be compulsory

Metering farm pump sets to  be compulsory

Installation of meter to all power consumers including households and agriculture pump sets will now be made compulsory if the states want to get central funds for power sector reforms.

The Union Cabinet on Thursday cleared two major projects worth Rs 75,645 crore in the power sector – Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS) with the objective of strengthening of transmission and distribution network and Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY), aimed at round-the-clock electricity to rural households.

Under both the schemes, the ministry of power will fund states to strengthen sub-transmission and distribution works, cut technical and commercial losses and improve collection efficiency.

Release of funds, however, will come with the rider that state administrations have to ensure compulsory metering of distribution transformers, feeders, consumers, implementing steps to stop theft and reducing transmission losses.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who vowed to provide quality power by bringing drastic changes in power sector during his election campaign, wants to implement the Gujarat electricity model across country. Modi, when he was the chief minister, was credited with tackling power shortages in the state by clamping down on thefts and strengthening the distribution network.

As per the Cabinet decision, the ongoing Restructured Accelerated Power Development and Reforms Programme (RAPDRP) will be merged with the IPDS while the existing Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyuthikaran Yojana will be merged with the DDUGJY).

Under DDUGJY, separate electricity feeders will be set up, aimed at ensuring that while farmers receive optimal electricity, the quality of power and its availability for rural households also improves.

Through this scheme the government is planning to give around eight hours of quality power to agriculture consumers and 24 hours electricity to households.

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