Itanagar, Feb 21 (IANS) Union Minister of State for Power and New and Renewable Energy Raj Kumar Singh on Wednesday directed officials to expedite the work to electrify every village in Arunachal Pradesh by May 1.
Singh’s directive came during a review meeting of the power sector with senior officers of the Arunachal Pradesh government in the presence of Chief Minister Pema Khandu, state Power Minister Tamiyo Taga and Chairman of the Arunachal Pradesh Energy Development Agency Jarkar Gamlin.
The Union Minister said at least 10 per cent of the houses in each village must be electrified within the deadline.
Singh also announced a special package of Rs 925 crore for strengthening of the power transmission and distribution system in the state.
This fund will be used for re-conductoring of old 11 KV lines and conversion of select long LT distribution lines with 11 KV High Voltage Distribution System (HVDS).
He appealed to the department to focus on cutting down losses and advised that the fund sanctioned be used primarily for the said purpose.
Informing that the Centre has assured 24×7 power for all by April 1, 2019, the Union Minister stressed on the need to move away from the regime of “load shedding” to the regime of “No Load Shedding”. He said it is necessary for the country to achieve outage-free supply of electricity, which is a sign of a developed nation.
Voicing concern over the slow progress in rural electrification by the contracting agencies, the Chief Minister spoke about the decision of the state government to depute the Arunachal Pradesh Energy Development Agency (APEDA) under the supervision of Deputy Commissioners to execute all the remaining electrification work.
Khandu said Arunachal Pradesh is a big “stumbling block” in achieving the Prime Minister’s goal to electrify every village by May 2018. Of the 900 unelectrified villages across the country, about 600 villages are in Arunachal, he added.
Earlier, Power Commissioner Kaling Tayeng made a detailed PowerPoint presentation on the power sector in the state.