Bihar government has decided to take the help of satellites to identify villages, including small hamlets, for rural electrification, state Energy Minister Bijendra Prasad Yadav said on Thursday.
“We have decided to take help of satellite imagery to identify villages for rural electrification. It will speed up the work,” Yadav said.
“After identifying such villages and hamlets with the help of satellite imagery, the government will prepare detailed project report soon,” he noted.
Yadav said that Bihar government will send a revised report to the central government by October, adding, “The Union energy ministry has assured to approve the report if submitted by next month”.
Yadav said that the villages will be electrified under the Rajiv Gandhi Gramin Vidyutikaran Yojana.
The move is expected to provide some respite for millions of people reeling under darkness in power-starved Bihar.
“At last our fight for electrification of all villages in Bihar has been approved by the Centre,” Yadav said.
Yadav said that electrification of villages with 100 or more houses will be completed in the next two years. “Rural electrification is the main focus of the state government after it bettered road connectivity,” he said.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar promised to provide power for all before 2015 assembly polls. Last year, Kumar announced that he will not ask for votes in the next assembly elections if his government failed to provide electricity to all the villages.
While Bihar's daily power requirement is between 3,000 to 3,200 MW, the state produces merely 200 to 300 MW. The central government supplies 1,985 MW to Bihar which faces a deficit of over 1,200 MW, officials of the state energy department point out.