- Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
- Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
What to study?
- For Prelims: Key features, objectives and targets of the scheme.
- For Mains: Significance of the scheme.
Context: Maharashtra has completed the 100% electrification under the central scheme of ‘Saubhagya’ and has illuminated 10,93,614 homes before the stipulated deadline of December 31.
- Under the Saubhagya scheme, the target of 100% electrification of the state was to be achieved by December 31, 2018. However, the State Power Utility (SPU) achieved the target on December 27, 2018 itself.
About SAUBHAGYA Scheme:
Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana – ‘Saubhagya’ was launched in September, 2017.
Under Saubhagya free electricity connections to all households (both APL and poor families) in rural areas and poor families in urban areas will be provided.
Rural Electrification Corporation (REC) has been designated as nodal agency for the Saubhagya scheme.
The scheme aims to achieve universal household electrification in all parts of the country.
All DISCOMs including Private Sector DISCOMs, State Power Departments and RE Cooperative Societies shall be eligible for financial assistance under the scheme in line with Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY).
Eligibility: The prospective beneficiary households for free electricity connections under the scheme would be identified using SECC 2011 data. However, un-electrified households not covered under 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.
Scope of the Scheme:
- Providing last mile connectivity and electricity connections to all un-electrified households in rural areas.
- Providing Solar Photovoltaic (SPV) based standalone system for un-electrified households located in remote and inaccessible villages / habitations, where grid extension is not feasible or cost effective.
- Providing last mile connectivity and electricity connections to all remaining economically poor un-electrified households in urban areas. Non-poor urban households are excluded from this scheme.
Mains Question: Electrification, in contemporary times, is a basic human necessity. With reference to the scheme Saubhagya, examine the feasibility of a national universal electrification program.