After Jayapur, another village adopted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his parliamentary constituency Varanasi is set to be illuminated by solar power. Uttar Pradesh New and Renewable Energy Development Authority (UP NEDA) is in the process of setting up a 50 KV solar plant in Nagepur, the second village adopted by the PM, Earlier, NEDA had set up two solar plants of 25 KV each in Jayapur in association with a private company. NEDA, which is the implementing agency, has already acquired land for the plant which will come up at an estimated cost of over Rs 1 crore. The solar power plants were installed in Jayapur around one-and-a-half year ago during the Samajwadi Party government in the state. Following the PM’s initiative, a company under its corporate social responsibility, installed the plant under the monitoring of NEDA.
Jayapur is the only village in the district to have solar power connection in each house. Being the PM’s adopted village, the plants were set up here on priority. More than 50 streetlights have already been set up in Nagepur. On an average, 30 solar streetlights have been set up in around 150 villages across the district. Project officer, UP NEDA, Varanasi, RB Singh said: “The Centre will provide 30 per cent subsidy for the plant while the company will bear the remaining cost. A piece of land has been acquired for the solar power plant on lease for next 30 years. The plant will be ready in next five months.”
Each household will get a free solar power connection that operates a mobile charging point and two LED bulbs. Plan is also afoot to provide connection to over 450 houses in the village. NEDA officials are regularly in touch with the company. “Local residents look after the solar streetlights in villages and ensure security during the night. On an average, there is a solar light on every 30 houses,” Singh added. Each solar power plant at Jayapur is of 25 KV. One plant is in the north while another is in southern part of the village. These plants were set up at an estimated cost of about Rs 70 lakh. A line was laid with the help of poles and connections were given to 675 houses. “Charging mobiles was a big problem due to poor power supply. After we got solar power plants, the problem has come to an end,” said Satish Singh, a local resident.
“We can charge our mobile phones anytime and our houses illuminate in solar light during the night even if power supply is interrupted,” he said. Another resident Manoj Kumar said the people were getting solar power free of cost. “They don’t have to pay monthly bill for it. Each house has solar power connection in the village. It is of great support to the students who may study as long as they want during night,” he said. Nagepur village head Parasnath Rajbhar has welcomed the decision and thanked the Prime Minister for efforts for the development of the village. Head of Jayapur village Srinarayan Patel hailed NEDA for installation of plants and said the solar power plant in villages would help families from economically weaker background as they would get free power.