Gujarat allocates funds for solar programmes

Gujarat’s state budget for the financial year 2020-21 included a Rs 9.12 billion provision as subsidy for solar rooftop projects and Rs 1.25 billion towards the Kisan Urja Suraksha Evan Utthan Mahabhiyan (KUSUM) programme. Of the Rs 1.25 billion allocated to the KUSUM programme, Rs 250 million has been allotted to help the Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (GUVNL) implement component-C of the KUSUM programme. The remaining Rs 1 billion was set aside to help the GUVNL in the solarisation of grid-connected agricultural pumps under component-B of the KUSUM programme. Overall, the state allotted Rs 2.276 billion for the renewable energy sector.

In the union budget for the year 2020-21, which was announced on February 1, 2020 the power and renewable energy sectors have been allocated a sum of Rs 220 billion. The budget focussed on three key aspects – aspiration India, economic development for all, and building a caring society.

Under aspirational India, the allocation of Rs 10 billion was announced for expanding the Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan (KUSUM). As part of this, there is a proposal to provide help to 2 million farmers for setting up stand-alone solar pumps and for another 1.5 million farmers to solarise their grid-connected pump sets. In addition, a scheme to enable farmers to set up solar power generation capacity on their fallow or barren lands and to sell it to the grid would be operationalised. This will help in removing farmers’ dependence on diesel and kerosene, increase solar power deployment, decrease subsidy burden on government and supplement farmers’ revenues.

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