To achieve the aim of installing one lakh solar agricultural pumps, an impetus has been given to the Chief Minister’s Solar Agricultural Pump Scheme to provide a day-time power supply to farmers for irrigation.
According to a press release by MSEDCL, a total of 85,963 farmers in the state have been given 3, 5 and 7.5 horse power solar agricultural pumps. “All these farmers have been provided uninterrupted power supply during the day and have also been freed from electricity bills,” the release stated.
Stating that state energy minister Nitin Raut has given a big impetus to the new connection of agricultural pumps through the policy of independent agricultural pump connection, the release added that chairman and managing director of MSEDCL Vijay Singhal conducted a review meeting, during which he instructed the authorities to “take special efforts”.
Officials informed that priority is being given to farmers in remote and tribal areas. “Only 10% of the basic price of the solar agricultural pump is paid by the farmers in the general category, and 5% of the basic price by the farmers belonging to the Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe,” they added.
So far, around 2.4 lakh applications have been received from the state.” This includes 46,700 from Aurangabad regional office, 20,199 from Nagpur, 13,091 from Konkan and 5,973 from Pune. Over a lakh applications were rejected due to various reasons such as incomplete documents, solar pump connections found during the inspection of the place, non-availability of water supply, lack of water resource etc,” the release stated, adding that as the warranty period of installed solar pumps and panels is five and ten years respectively, the cost of maintenance for farmers is zero.