PATNA: Union minister of state for power R K Singh on Monday said all villages in the country would be electrified by the end of October this year.
The bureaucrat- turned- politician said the official deadline for the purpose was December-end, but he has asked all the states to complete the work by October- end.
The minister with independent charge further said the states would be asked to furnish details of their requirements so that leftover rural settlements were also electrified by by March next year. “The Centre is committed to providing 24×7 power supply,” he told a press conference at the BJP’s state HQ in Patna on Monday.
According to the minister, the country’s power generation capacity is currently 3.2 lakhMW. “We need to augment it,” he said and added the central government was focusing on thermal and renewable energy for the purpose.
“Against the targeted generation of 1.15 lakhMW renewable energy, we are generating 70,000MW. We are working on proposals for new thermal and renewable energy plants,” Singh said.
The first-time MP from Ara said India ranks third in the world in terms of power generation and fourth in terms of power consumption. “However, the per capita power availability in our country is still comparatively low,” he said.
Singh said the states have been asked to install pre-paid and smart meters to prevent power theft. “Pre-paid meters also prevent incidence of over-billing,” he said.
Singh said the Centre has sanctioned energy schemes worth Rs 20,000 crores for Bihar, and work is underway on many of these schemes. Bihar requires 4500-5000MW power per day against which the Centre has allocated it 4,000MW from its power plants, he said.