Agriculture World

Solar Pump Yojana Latest Update: Government Expands Scope of PM-KUSUM Scheme; Check New Rules & Eligibility Criteria

Pronami Chetia
Pronami Chetia
solar pump

Solar pump yojana: Amid the corona crisis and festive season, the renewable energy ministry has decided to expand the scope of PM KUSUM yojana to enable greater solar energy generation in farm sector. Moreover, government has been working rigorously for the upliftment of farm sector through solar energy.

In order to fulfill Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of doubling farmer’s income by 2022, the central government has been initiating many schemes to provide sustainable profitability to the farmers of the country. Maintaining the profitability of farmers is one of the major challenges in the current scenario of Indian agriculture. Keeping these things in mind, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had approved PM-KUSUM scheme on February 19, 2019.

According to an official statement, the ministry has amended the guidelines of the scheme based on the learning from its implementation during the first year.

Now, solar power plants can also be installed on pasture land and marshy land of farmers along with barren, fallow and agricultural lands.

Solar project smaller than 500 KW is Allowed

To support small farmers, solar projects smaller than 500 kW may be allowed by states based on techno-commercial feasibility, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) statement said. According to sources, the selected renewable power generator (RPG) shall commission the solar power plant within twelve months from date of issuance of Letter of Award (LoA).

Moreover, there shall be no penalty on RPG for shortfall in solar power generation from minimum prescribed Capacity Utilization Factor. 

MNRE will Retain 33% of Eligible Service Charges

According to reports, MNRE will retain 33 per cent of eligible service charges for nationwide Information, Education and Communication (IEC) activities. On the other hand, the ministry is likely release 50 per cent of eligible service charges for the sanctioned quantity after placement of LoA for preparatory activities. 

The central financial assistance (CFA) will be allowed for solar pump capacity of higher than 7.5 HP considering up to 5 HP capacity for each individual in the group for solar pumps to be set up and used by water user associations/farmer producer organisations/primary agriculture credit societies or for cluster based irrigation system.

Kusum Yojana: Know the Eligibility

To ensure quality and post installation services, it is now decided to allow joint venture of manufacturer of solar pump/solar panel/solar pump controller with integrators.

Earlier, the participation in the centralised tender has only decided to give to solar pump and solar panel manufacturers in the bid considering quality and post installation services for next five years. 

However, it came to notice that these manufacturers lack workforce in the field and are dependent on local integrators for this purpose, which has caused delay in installation of solar pumps.

According to report, solar pump specifications were updated by MNRE in July 2019 and same are being used for Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyaan (PM-KUSUM) scheme. 

In order to make effective use of solar energy it was proposed to introduce USPC (Universal Solar Pump Controller) which will not only run the water pump but can also run other electric equipment like cold storage, battery charging, flour mill, etc.

The Ministry also said that the installation of USPC will increase the income of farmers, which is the aim of the PM-KUSUM scheme.

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