Electricity bills reaching homes will be a history soon as the government is currently planning to revolutionise the entire billing system by making all meters smart prepaid in the next three years.
“In next three years metering will go smartly prepaid, and gone will be the days of bills reaching your house. So need of the hour is to scale up manufacturing of smart prepaid meters and to bring down their prices.” an official release reported citing R K Singh, Minister of State(IC) for Power and New & Renewable Energy.
During an interaction with smart meter manufacturers, the minister also said that there is a need to scale up the manufacturing of these meters as the coming few years will pose huge demand for them. The smart prepaid meters should be made mandatory after a particular date, the minister also advised the officials of the power ministry.
The plan of the government to fast introduce smart meters in the country will not only revolutionise the power sector but also reduce AT&C losses, ensure better health of DISCOMs, incentivise energy conservation and ease bill payments and also generate skilled employment for the youth, the minister said.
It was also decided in the meeting that the technical aspects will be further deliberated into in consultation with meter manufacturers, DISCOMs and system integrators.
Meanwhile, the government announced Rs 1.4 lakh crore KUSUM scheme to promote the use of solar power among farmers. The scheme will be implemented from next month. According to the government, 4 crore families targeted under the SAUBHAGYA scheme would get electricity connections by December, ahead of the March 2019 deadline.
“The KUSUM (Kisan Urja Suraksha Evam Utthaan Mahaabhiyan) will be implemented in July. Under this scheme farmers would be provided with solar water pumps,” the minister of power and new & renewable energy said at a press conference. Under the scheme, the government has planned to provide 27.5 lakh solar pumps (17.50 lakh standalone + 10 Lakh Grid-connected).