West Bengal issues tender to solarise 700 agricultural pumps under Kusum scheme

The West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (WBSEDCL) has floated a tender to set up grid-connected solar systems for agricultural consumers under Component C of the Pradhan Mantri KisanUrja Suraksha evamUtthanMahabhiyan (PM-KUSUM) programme. As per the tender document, 700 pumps are to be solarised across the districts of Hooghly, Purba-Burdwan, and Birbhum districts. These pumps are spread across 7 packages of 100 pumps each across locations within the three districts. The work will be carried out on a turnkey basis and developers will be required to design, survey, supply, installation, testing, and commission the distributed solar systems. Additionally, the developers must provide comprehensive maintenance services for five years. The project is estimated to cost Rs 378 million. The winning bidder must submit 1 per cent of the estimated package cost as the bid security deposit and 5 per cent of the contract price as the performance bank guarantee within 15 days of the letter of award (LoA). The project must be completed in under nine months of issue of the LoA. The last date for submission of bids is February 15, 2021

The tender document also specifies that the solar modules that are used must be sourced indigenously and meet the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy’s (MNRE) domestic content criteria for capital subsidies. Further, the solar modules must be made up of 60 or 72 solar cells, each with a dimension of 156 mm x 156 mm. The modules with 60 cells are required to have a minimum capacity of 300 W and those with 72 cells must have a minimum capacity of 325 W.

In November 2020, the MNRE revised the targets of Component C of the PM-KUSUM scheme from the solarisation of 1 million pumps to 1.5 million pumps by 2022. In December 2020, the Ajmer Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited invited bids to solarize 29 agricultural feedersunder component C of the KUSUM program in Rajasthan.

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