Prime minister Narendra Modi may have claimed that all villages in the country have got electrified but state discom MSEDCL says this target will be achieved in the state only by the year end.
According to a source in MSEDCL, there were 1.07 lakh hamlets in the state. “We have electrified 98,356 hamlets so far and remaining 2,283 will have power by the year end. Of these 1,704 hamlets will be electrified under Saubhagya Yojana, 232 under Deen Dayal Gramin Jyoti Yojana (DDGJY) and 347 using local area development (LAD) fund,” he said.
“We will electrify most villages but the extremely remote ones will be supplied power from renewable energy sources by Maharashtra Energy Development Agency (MEDA). We have, however, electrified all the 41,928 big villages in the state,” he further said.
According to the official, the number of houses in rural areas of the state was 1,40,26,353. “Of these 1,37,92,125 houses have power supply, which translates into 98.33%. The remaining 2.34 lakh houses will get it by December 2018,” he added.
Some districts in the state are lagging behind in household electrification. “The figure for Nandurbar district is 87% followed by Gadchiroli at 92%,” said the source.
Meanwhile, a MSEDCL spokesperson said under the Gram Swaraj Abhiyan, around 8,820 beneficiaries from the 192 villages were given electricity even before the set deadline. “Maharashtra is the first state to achieve the target. The Central government implemented the Abhiyan beginning from Ambedkar Jayanti April 14, 2018, to May 5, 2018. Under Saubhagya Yojna and Gram Swaraj Abhiyaan, 192 villages across the State where more than 80% households are Dalits, poor and below the poverty line (BPL) were to be electrified by May 5. However, we achieved this target on May 1. This includes eight remote and sensitive villages of Gadchiroli district and three of Gondia district. Also 100% electrification of backward districts like Bhandara, Chandrapur, Washim, Yavatmal, Nanded has been completed,” he said.
“Our commitment can be gauged from the case of Chandar hamlet in Pune district. Chandar and the two adjoining hamlets Digewasti and Takewasti were electrified in mere seven days. We literally dragged equipment to these villages through the hills installing 65 line poles and distribution transformers,” the spokesperson added.