Access to electricity definitely has positive impact on quality of life of people in all aspects of daily household chores and human development. Firstly , Access to electricity would substitute use of Kerosene for lighting purposes resulting in reduction in indoor pollution thereby saving people from health hazards. Further, electricity access would help in establishing efficient and modern health services in all parts of the country. Lighting after the sunset also provide a sense of enhanced personal safety especially for women and increase in post sunset social as well as economic activities. Availability of electricity will boost education services across all areas and quality lighting post sunset would facilitate children to spend more time on studies and move ahead further in prospective careers. Household electrification also increases the likelihood that women would study and earn income.
Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana –“Saubhagya” is a scheme to ensure electrification of all willing households in the country in rural as well as urban areas.
The objective of the ‘Saubhagya’ is to provide energy access to all by last mile connectivity and electricity connections to all remaining un-electrified households in rural as well as urban areas to achieve universal household electrification in the country.
Beneficiaries of the project
The beneficiaries for free electricity connections would be identified using Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011 data. However, un-electrified households not covered under the 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.
The solar power packs of 200 to 300 Wp with battery bank for un-electrified households located in remote and inaccessible areas, comprises of Five LED lights, One DC fan, One DC power plug. It also includes the Repair and Maintenance (R&M) for 5 years.
For easy and accelerated implementation of the Scheme, modern technology shall be used for household survey by using Mobile App. Beneficiaries shall be identified and their application for electricity connection along with applicant photograph and identity proof shall be registered on spot. The Gram Panchayat/Public institutions in the rural areas may be authorised to collect application forms along with complete documentation, distribute bills and collect revenue in consultation with the Panchayat Raj Institutions and Urban Local Bodies.
The Rural Electrification Corporation Limited (REC) will remain the nodal agency for the operationalisation of the scheme throughout the country.
Expected outcomes of the scheme
The expected outcome of the Scheme is as follows:
- Environmental upgradation by substitution of Kerosene for lighting purposes
- Improvement education services
- Better health services
- Enhanced connectivity through radio, television, mobiles, etc.
- Increased economic activities and jobs
- Improved quality of life especially for women
Outlay for the project
The total outlay of the project is Rs. 16, 320 crore while the Gross Budgetary Support (GBS) is Rs. 12,320 crore. The outlay for the rural households is Rs. 14,025 crore while the GBS is Rs. 10,587.50 crore. For the urban households the outlay is Rs. 2,295 crore while GBS is Rs. 1,732.50 crore. The Government of India will provide largely funds for the Scheme to all States/UTs.
The States and Union Territories are required to complete the works of household electrification by the 31st of December 2018.