NEW DELHI: The demand for power in the country is on a rise as new consumers are being connected under the Saubhagya scheme, said RK Singh, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power and Renewable Energy.
“There has been a 6.5-7 per cent growth in power demand during the current fiscal compared to the last financial year. This is on the back of 35.96 lakh new households getting electricity connections under the Saubhagya scheme since October 2017,” said Singh.
Energy generation from conventional sources grew by 4.72 per cent to 1,160.141 billion units in the financial year 2016-17, according to data shared by the Ministry of Power.
The Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana – “Saubhagya” – is the Centre’s household electrification scheme. It aims to connect all households with electricity connections by December 2018. In response to a query on the status of coal supplies to thermal power plants, Singh said, “There is more pressure on coal based power plants as gas based power plants are not operating. As of March 19, 12 power plants had critical stock of coal, while 16 had super critical stock.”
A Power Ministry official said, “We are presently getting 275 rakes of coal. In the April-February period in the last financial year, 448 million tonne of coal was consumed by power plants.
“For the same period during the current fiscal, 486 million tonne has been supplied to thermal power plants. This has led to an 8.5 per cent growth in volumes and 6 per cent rise in energy terms.”