PATNA: All 39,073 villages and 1,06,249 ‘tolas’ (sub-unit in villages) of Bihar are now electrified.
Making this declaration at an energy department’s event here, Bihar CM Nitish Kumar on Friday said all 26 lakh households in Bihar would be provided free electricity connection by end of coming December.
Lauding the energy department for achieving the target of electrifying all ‘tolas’ ahead of the stipulated deadline, CM also said that the centre adopted ‘Saubhagya’ scheme from Bihar model of “Har Ghar Bijali Lagataar’, a major component of the state government’s ‘Saat Nischay’ (seven resolves) programme which promises free electricity connection to each households across the state.
Nitish Kumar had launched the Bihar model of free electricity connection programme at an event on November 15, 2016.
“After we launched our “Har Ghar Bijali Lagataar’ programme and started providing free electricity connection in Bihar, the state’s energy minister Bijendra Prasad Yadav discussed about it at a conference of the state energy ministers in Delhi. After learning about the Bihar model, the former union power minister Piyush Goyal not only appreciated our model but also sent a team of energy officials from many states to study the Bihar model,” Nitish said while addressing energy department’s event at the Vidyut Bhawan premises here.
CM said while patting Bihar for its model, Goyal had then said the same should be implemented by all states. Later the Centre came out with Saubhagya scheme on the similar line of Bihar model.
The Saubhagya scheme was launched by PM Narendra Modi on September 25, 2017, more than 10 months after Nitish launched ‘Har Ghar Bijali Lagataar’ scheme.
While the centre’s Saubhagya scheme promises to provide free electricity connection to over 4 crore households by December 2018, Bihar government’s ‘Har Ghar Bijali Lagataar’ has resolved to provide free electricity connection to all 26 lakh households of the state by the same period.
“We have already provided free electricity connections to more than 8 lakh households in the state, another 6 lakh households would be provided by coming June and all 26 lakh by end of coming December,” CM said.
“But we are happy that the Centre has adopted out scheme. Under the Saubhagya scheme, 60% of cost would be borne by the Centre. Now, when the centre will share 60% cost, we would utilise the saved money on other power schemes.
The CM also laid foundation stones and inaugurated different power schemes worth over Rs 3650.83 crore on this occasion. Deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi and energy minister Bijendra Prasad Yadav also addressed the event.