Saubhagya Yojna was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi with the aim to electrify all rural and urban households by December 2018. The new program aims to deliver light for many Indian homes.
The Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana, called Saubhagya Yojna, is a Rs.163 billion (US$2.5 billion) program that aims to electrify every household by December 2018. Run by the Rural Electrification Corporation, the program will cover about 30 million households and will provide free power connections to poor families.
Reducing harmful kerosene use; improving educational, health, safety and communication services; increasing job opportunities and; improving quality of life, especially for women are the key benefits of the program highlighted by the government.
Focused on providing grid access, the new program is a big boost to millions in India without access to modern electricity. Clean energy market in India is growing rapidly with more than 13 Gigawatt (GW) of installed grid-connected solar capacity as of June 2017, and record-low solar prices below Rs. 3.0 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) (~$0.04) for utility-scale solar.
India has set ambitious targets of 40% electricity-generation from non-fossil sources and a 33-35% reduction in emissions intensity by 2030 from 2005 levels, under the Paris Climate Agreement. 100 GW of solar power and 60 GW of wind power by 2022 from the current 13 GW solar power and 32.5 GW of wind power are some of the other targets set by India.
The new Saubhagya Yojna program could usher in a wave of clean energy expansion to fight climate change and build healthier communities with less pollution – all while delivering the promise of light.