With a motive to ensure electricity in all rural as well as urban household areas of the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched a new scheme- Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana –“Saubhagya”.
The total outlay of the project is Rs. 16, 320 crores while the Gross Budgetary Support (GBS) is Rs. 12,320 crore. The outlay for the rural households is Rs. 14,025 crore while the GBS is Rs. 10,587.50 crore. For the urban households, the outlay is Rs. 2,295 crore while GBS is Rs. 1,732.50 crore. The Government of India will be providing funds for the scheme to all States/UTs.
The deadline to complete the work of household electrification is set latest by 31st December 2018.
The beneficiaries for free electricity connections would be identified using Socio-Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011 data. However, un-electrified households not covered under the SECC data would also be provided electricity connections under the scheme on payment of Rs. 500 which shall be recovered by DISCOMs in 10 instalments through electricity bill.
The solar power packs of 200 to 300 Wp with a battery bank for un-electrified households located in remote and inaccessible areas, comprises of Five LED lights, One DC fan, One DC power plug. It also includes the Repair and Maintenance (R&M) for 5 years.
For an accelerated implementation of the Scheme, modern technology shall be used for the household survey by using Mobile App. Beneficiaries shall be identified and their application for electricity connection along with applicant photograph and identity proof shall be registered on spot.
The Gram Panchayat/Public institutions in the rural areas may be authorized to collect application forms along with complete documentation, distribute bills and collect revenue in consultation with the Panchayat Raj Institutions and Urban Local Bodies. The Rural Electrification Corporation Limited (REC) will remain the nodal agency for the operationalisation of the scheme throughout the country.
It is expected that the scheme will benefit the environment by upgrading it and substituting it from kerosene which is used for lighting.
Also, it is expected to yield fruitful results in terms of social-economic agendas. It will benefit the educational aspirations of young minds in rural areas, enhance public safety and connectivity through radio, television, mobiles, increased economic growth and employment opportunities, which is desired to raise the standard of living- especially for women.