Srinagar, July 25: Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha today expressed gratitude towards the Government of India and Hon’ble Union Power Minister Sh RK Singh for sanctioning Phase-I package of Rs 5641.91 Cr for complete revamp, strengthening of the power distribution infrastructure under Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme (RDSS) in both Urban & Rural Areas of J&K.
The Lt Governor termed the sanctioning of Phase-I as a significant development in the power sector in the UT which will ensure uninterrupted and reliable power supply to the citizens of J&K.
The Lt Governor was speaking at an event organized to mark the beginning of ‘Ujjwal Bharat-Ujjwal Bhavishya, Power @2047’ celebrations in J&K, at SP College, Srinagar.
Of the amount under Phase-I, JPDCL will get Rs 2807.70 Cr ( Rs 2265.95 Cr under Loss Reduction and Rs 541.75 Cr under Smart Metering) and KPDCL to receive Rs 2834.21 Cr (Rs 2329.25 Cr under Loss Reduction and Rs 504.96 Cr under Smart Metering).
Under Phase-I, projects related to smart pre-paid metering and loss reduction/infrastructure creation will be implemented. Modernization works will be funded separately under Phase II. It is a fitting tribute to celebrate ‘Ujjwal Bharat-Ujjwal Bhavishya, Power @2047’, said the Lt Governor.
Pertinently, J&K has submitted an investment plan of Rs 12,922 Cr under RDSS to remove all supply constraints in the distribution sector to supply 24x7 quality electricity to all households.
The Lt Governor said that the implementation of reforms-based and Result-linked Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme (RDSS) in the UT will go a long way in bringing about a complete turnaround in the power sector of J&K.
The scheme aims at improving the operational efficiency of the Power Department, bringing in the greater financial viability of the DISCOMs, besides implementing smart pre-paid metering system, reducing the AT&C losses and strengthening infrastructure for providing reliable, affordable and quality power supply to end consumers, he added.
It will also open up employment opportunities by meeting the growing demand for opening new industry in the UT, he further added.
Area-wise system studies in every district have been conducted with the support of Government of India to ascertain the system inadequacies and requirements to supply 24x7 affordable electricity.
Focus will also be laid on Policy and Structural Reforms; Developing a Training Policy of employees with targeted annual trainings in advanced area, besides improving the aesthetic view of Jammu and Srinagar cities by way of conversion of the overhead electrical network to underground cabling at major roads of the two capital cities, Jammu and Srinagar of the UT, it was informed.
The works to be executed under Phase-I includes 14,07,045 Pre-Paid Smart Metering; 88,037 DT Metering; Distribution Transformers; Bifurcation of Lengthy Feeders; Segregation of Agricultural Feeders; Replacement of Old/frayed conductors; Installation of Capacitor Bank at 66/11kV and 33/11kV Substations for Voltage regulation etc.
Observing that J&K UT has taken many steps to strengthen four pillars of electricity system- production, transmission, distribution & connection, the Lt Governor stressed that illegal connection and power theft is the cancer of electricity system, and urged the citizens to launch a sustained campaign against it.
People of J&K must discharge their major responsibility by informing the department about the illegal connections & power pilferage and must pay their electricity bills on time, he added.
Enlisting various reforms introduced by the government to overhaul the power sector in the UT, the Lt Governor said that the government is working on a mission mode for developing new power infrastructure and improving the existing one to meet the power demands of the people.
Unprecedented milestones have been achieved to ensure last mile connectivity and 100% saturation of Central Sector Scheme of Universal Household Electrification. More than 6500 new distribution transformers have been installed and reliability of power distribution has been ensured in both rural and urban areas, noted the Lt Governor.
Transmission and distribution capacity has been increased. More power has been supplied even during peak days. Important power projects which were hanging in balance for decades are now being executed. In next three years, we are all set to generate the capacity equivalent to what was achieved in 70 years, added the Lt Governor.
Additional capacity of 1275 MVA was added to the Kashmir Valley by constructing six new grid sub-stations of 220 and 132 KVA. 54 new receiving stations were installed and 48 receiving stations were upgraded. The resources for providing electricity to a large population were strengthened by spending a total of Rs 1451 crore, the Lt Governor said.
The Lt Governor commended the dedication and commitment displayed by the officers, employees and personnel working day and night in the field to improve the power scenario in the UT.
The grievances and complaints of the consumers are being redressed in a shortest possible time through an effective feedback system, grievance redressal mechanism and 24x7 call center of the Power Development Department, added the Lt Governor.
Underscoring that under Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, Ujjawal Bharat –Ujjawal Bhavishya, Power @ 2047 is being organized at Shri Pratap Singh College, the powerhouse of knowledge, the Lt Governor observed that this college was also instrumental in establishing the women's guerrilla army against the Pakistani tribal invasion, and remembered the likes of Dr RK Bhan, Kanta Wazir, Mahmuda Shah and Ghulam Mohammad Sadiq.
Ujjawal Bharat –Ujjawal Bhavishya will be celebrated from 25th to 30th July in all districts of the country.
A number of video clips were displayed showing the transformation brought in the power sector, besides feedback of the citizens. A Nukkad Natak was presented by the students of GGHSS Kothi Bagh giving message of promoting Green energy, saving electricity and reducing dependence on fossil fuels with increased usage of electric vehicles.
Dr Arun Kumar Mehta, Chief Secretary, while addressing the gathering on the occasion said that Digital India is not possible without a robust power sector. “We have to move ahead with new thinking to realise the dream of Ujjwal Bharat Ujjwal Bhavishaya”, he added.
Nitishwar Kumar, Principal Secretary to Lt Governor and Principal Secretary, Power Development Department highlighted the work done in the last one year for strengthening the power sector of J&K.
Junaid Azim Mattu, Mayor SMC, while speaking on the occasion impressed upon the need of sensitising the people for actively playing their role in reducing power losses and strengthening the power sector.
Dr Darakhshan Andrabi, Chairperson J&K Waqf Board, and Sh Aftab Malik DDC Chairperson Srinagar, lauded the role of KPDCL in providing power even during difficult climatic conditions.
Pandurang K Pole, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir; Basharat Qayoom, MD KPDCL, besides PDD officials, students & faculty members of SP College Srinagar were present on the occasion.