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Questions you had about the Saubhagya Scheme in India

 

The objective of the ‘Saubhagya’ scheme is to provide energy access to all by providing last mile connectivity and electricity connections to all the remaining 300 Lakhs un-electrified households in rural as well as urban areas. Under the Saubhagya scheme which is expected to cost about ₹16,320 crore all poor households that have no access to electricity till date will be provided electricity connections free of cost.

1. What is Saubhagya scheme?

a. Saubhagya scheme was launched on 25th September, 2017 to ensure electrification of all willing households in the country in rural as well as urban areas.
 
b. It is the scheme to provide last mile connectivity and electricity connections to all remaining 300 Lakhs un-electrified households in rural(about 250 Lakhs) as well as urban areas (about 50 Lakhs) to achieve universal household electrification in the country.
 
2. What is the scope of the scheme?
 
a. Providing last mile connectivity and electricity connections to all un-electrified households in rural areas
 
b. Providing Solar Photo Voltaic (SPV) based stand-alone systems for un-electrified households located in remote and inaccessible villages/ habitations where grid-extension is not feasible or cost effective
 
c. Providing last mile connectivity and electricity connections to all remaining economically poor un-electrified households in urban areas. Non-poor urban households are excluded of this scheme
 
3. What all is comprised of in the connection?
 
a. The electricity connection to households include:
i. Release of electricity connections by drawing a service cable from the nearest electricity pole to the household premise, 
ii. Installation of energy meter and;
iii. Wiring for a single light point with LED bulb and a mobile charging point. 
 
b. In case the electricity pole is not available nearby from household for drawing service cable, the erection of additional pole along with conductor and associated accessories shall also be covered under the scheme.
 
4. What about the places where grid reachability is an issue?
 
a. For such households, solar power packs of 200 to 300 Watt and battery back with 5 LED light, 1 DC Fan, 1 DC power plug along with repair and maintenance for 5 years would be provided.
 
5. Who are the beneficiaries of this facility and who all can avail electricity connection?
 
a. The beneficiaries for free electricity connections would be identified using Socio Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011 data. However, un-electrified households not covered under the SECC data would also be provided electricity connections under the scheme on payment of Rs. 500 which shall be recovered by DISCOMs in 10 instalments through electricity bill.
 
6. Which are the agencies involved and who will receive the funding?
 
a. Rural Electrification Corporation Limited (REC) is the nodal agency for implementation of the scheme
 
b. All DISCOMs including private sector DISCOMs, State Power Departments and Rural Electric Cooperative Societies shall be eligible for financial assistance under the scheme.
 
7. How is the project formulation done?
 
a. To start the implementation of the scheme, the eligible entities may start releasing connections to eligible households with immediate effect. The expenditure incurred by the eligible entities for electricity connections with effect from 11th Oct’17 would be entitled for funding under the Saubhagya scheme.
 
b. The entities through concerned state departments need to submit a Letter of Intent to REC with a copy to Ministry of Power to participate in Saubhagya scheme
 
c. All entities would formulate DPRs for electrification in two parts separately for rural and urban areas and submitted to REC online 
 
d. The recommendation of the State Level Standing committee (SLSC) of DDUGJY would follow.
 
e. The eligible projects will be approved by the monitoring committee based on techno-commercial appraisal by REC and its recommendations.
 
f. REC would then issue the sanction letter to be approved by Ministry of Power/Monitoring committee. 
 
8. What is the expected timeline of the various stages in the scheme?
 
S. No. Activity Timeline1
1 Submission of DPRs by states By 6th Nov 2017
2 Approval of projects By 15th Nov 2017
3 Award of contracts By 31st Dec 2017
4 Completion of projects for availing additional grants By 31st Dec 2018
 

 

9. What is the funding pattern for the scheme?

 

Agency2 Nature of support Quantum of support (percentage of project cost)
Other than Special Category States Special Category States
Govt. of India Grant 60 85
Utility/ State Contribution Own Fund 10 5
Loan (FIs/Banks) Loan 30 10
Additional Grant from GoI on achievement of prescribed milestones Grant 50% of total loan component (30%) i.e. 15% 50% of total loan component (10%) i.e. 5%
Maximum Grant by GoI (including additional grant on achievement of prescribed milestones) Grant 75 90

 

10. What are the charges for the electricity?

a. There is no provision in the scheme to provide free power to any category of consumers. The cost of electricity consumption shall have to be paid by the respective consumers as per prevailing tariff of the DISCOM/Power Deptt.
 
11. How is it different from previous government schemes?
 
a. Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY) envisage creation of basic electricity infrastructure in villages / habitations, strengthening & augmentation of existing infrastructure, metering of existing feeders / distribution transformers / consumers to improve quality and reliability of power supply in rural areas. Besides this, last mile connectivity and free electricity connections are also provided to BPL households only identified by the States as per their list. 
 
b. However, in villages which are electrified in past for a long period, many households do not have electricity connections for many reasons. Some of the really poor households do not have BPL cards but these households are not capable of paying applicable initial connection charges. There is also lack of awareness as to how to get connection or taking connection is not an easy task for illiterate people. There may not be electricity pole nearby and the cost of erection of additional pole, conductor is also chargeable from the households for obtaining a connection.
 
c. Similarly in urban areas, Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS) provides for creation of necessary infrastructure to provide electricity access but some households are not yet connected mainly on account of their economic condition as they are not capable of paying the initial connection charges.
 
d. Therefore, Saubhagya has been launched to plug such gaps and comprehensively address the issues of entry barrier, last mile connectivity and release of electricity connections to all un-electrified households in rural and urban areas.
 
12. Where does the scope for DDUGJY and Saubhagya differ?
 
a. According to the official memorandum for Saubhagya scheme, below is the calculation for the no. of households estimation:
 

S. No.

Description

Number

1

Total no. of households 

1796 Lakhs

2

Electrified rural households

1336 Lakhs

3

Remaining un-electrified households (1-2)

460 Lakhs

4

BPL households already sanctioned under DDUGJY and yet to be electrified

179 Lakhs

5

Balance households yet to be electrified

281 Lakhs

6

Economically poor households in urban areas yet to be electrified

50 Lakhs

7

Total un-electrified households (5+6)

331 Lakhs

 

Now according to this, the remaining households to be electrified will be covered in Saubhagya scheme and those already under sanctioned households will be electrified under DDUGJY RE component.

 

13. Is the Saubhagya scheme outlay in addition to DDUGJY?
 
a. Yes, the cost of Saubhagya scheme i.e. Rs. 16,320 crore is over and above the investment being made under DDUGJY.
 
14. What is the calculation of this outlay?
 

a. For rural households

S. No. Particulars Cost (Rs. Cr.) GBS (@75% of cost)
1

Cost of service connections to remaining households

250 Lakh HHs @ Rs. 3000/=

7500.00 5625.00
2 Cost towards providing last mile connectivity where required in 250 Lakh HHs @ Rs. 1500/= 3750.00 2812.50
3

SPV based standalone systems for HHs in remote areas

5 Lakh HHs @ Rs. 50000/=

2500.00 1875.00
4 Total 13750.00 10312.50
5 Contingencies @ 2% of Total 275.00 275.00
6 Grand Total 14025.00 10587.50
 

 

b. For Urban households

S. No. Particulars Cost (Rs. Cr.) GBS (@75% of cost)
1

Cost of service connections to remaining households

50 Lakh HHs @ Rs. 3000/=

1500.00 1125.00
2 Cost towards providing last mile connectivity where required in 50 Lakh HHs @ Rs. 1500/= 750.00 562.50
3 Total 2250.00 1687.50
4 Contingencies @ 2% of Total 45.00 45.00
5 Grand Total 2295.00 1732.50
 

c. Year-wise phasing details

Year For Rural HHs For Urban HHs

(Rs. Cr)

GOI Share  (Rs. Cr)

(Rs. Cr)

GOI Share  (Rs. Cr)
2017-18 4200.00 3100.00 700.00 500.00
2018-19* 9825.00 7487.00 1595.00 1232.00
Total 14025.00 10587.00 2295.00 1732.50

 

*All states/UTs are required to complete the works of household electrification by 31st Mar 2019. However, spillover works, if any will continue till 2021-22.

 

15. Which are the major states that will be impacted by this scheme?
 
a. Uttar-Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Jharkhand, Assam and Rajasthan are together home to nearly 90 per cent of India’s non-electrified households, would spell out the success for the scheme from a region standpoint.
 
Top non-electrified(NE) states3
State No. of NE households All India % share
Uttar Pradesh 1,46,59,232 36.2
Bihar 64,83,909 16.0
Madhya Pradesh 44,99,405 11.1
Odisha 32,52,725 8.0
Jharkhand 30,45,691 7.5
Assam 24,12,596 6.0
Rajasthan 20,20,670 5.0
Karnataka 7,37,182 1.8
Haryana 6,82,777 1.7
Chhattisgarh       6,37,678 1.6
Total 3,84,31,865 95.0
All India Total 4,04,55,613 100.0

1http://powermin.nic.in/sites/default/files/webform/notices/Guidelines_of...

2http://powermin.nic.in/sites/default/files/webform/notices/OM_SAUBHAGYA_...

3http://www.tndindia.com/three-states-will-drive-saubhagyas-success

Author: sustainabilityoutlook