To continue supplying power free of cost to the farm sector for nine hours during the day, the Andhra Pradesh government has upgraded the agriculture feeders at a cost of ₹1,700 crore .
Of the 6,663 feeders, only 3,854 were conducive for supplying power for nine hours in two spells, hence there was a need to augment their capacity, an official release said. The aim is to make the feeder network robust in order to implement the scheme for the next 30 years without any hitch.
The agricultural feeders consume around 15,700 million units of energy per annum, which is almost 24% of the total energy demand (66,000 MU per annum) of the State. The government has sanctioned over 1.3 lakh new agricultural connections in the last two years.
The power utilities in the State have created a record of sorts by supplying free power to more than 18 lakh agricultural services during the day under the government’s flagship ‘Navaratnalu’ scheme.
Prior to June 2019, power used to be supplied for seven hours in two spells, including the nights.
The power utilities completed the upgradation of the feeders and other infrastructure works in a year from 2019 and were able to supply free power to all the dedicated agriculture feeders during the rabi season. The utilities already supplied free power to around 90% feeders in the kharif season in 2020.
According to the press release, the subsidy given by the government to the agricultural sector in 2020-21 financial year was ₹8,559 crore as against ₹6,030 crore in 2018-19 fiscal.
In order to continue the free power scheme to the farm sector for the next three decades, the government has undertaken the establishment of an exclusive 10,000-MW solar power plant.
Crime Today News | Andhra Pradesh