Farmers have been cultivating food for millions of years. Sometimes he earns decent and sometimes fate plays ill with his/her bank balance. Paddy, Wheat, Other Cereal Crops, Flowers, Fruits, Vegetables etc has been something which every farmer grows and now the government of Gujarat has come forward for the welfare of farmers with something different.
Farmers will now, harvest solar energy and will get paid for it. Gujarat government launched a scheme in which the farmers will be given solar installation units at subsidy. Through the scheme, the government is expected to get 175 MW of power per year. The farmers will utilize the electricity generated by this scheme for their farms and the surplus power can be sold to the companies, whose profits will be kept by the farmers.
Key highlights of the Scheme:
- Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani has launched Surya Shakti Kisan Scheme at a cost of Rs. 870 crores.
- Farmers will be given loans from NABARD.
- The state government would provide financial assistance to 12,400 farmers out of the state’s total 15 lakh farmers to generate an estimated 175 MW of power, in the first phase of the scheme.
- Farmers will have to spend only 5 percent of the total expenditure on the establishment of a solar project.
- Central and state governments will bear 60 percent of the total cost of the project whereas 35 percent of the share will be paid by farmers in a seven year period.
- Under this scheme, farmers will get 12 hours electricity without any problem of low voltage.
- The government would also enter in a 25 year power purchase agreement with the farmers, according to which the farmers the companies wil bu electricity from farmers at the rate of Rs7 per unit till the time loans are paid off.
- After the loans are paid off, the electricity will be bought at the rate of Rs. 3.5 per unit, after which the farmer will have full ownership.
- This scheme is for those farmers who are the current consumers of power companies.
Under this scheme, water and electricity will be saved. Besides Prime Minister Narendra Modi's goal of doubling the income of the farmer is also targeted. Farmers will get benefitted by the use of solar energy which will also push India to move towards adopting green energy and sustainable development. Apart from that it would also help the farmers to get an additional source of income, with them selling the surplus energy to the companies.