The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, on Tuesday reviewed progress of key infrastructure sectors of power, renewable energy, petroleum and natural gas, coal, and mining. The review meeting, which lasted for over two hours, was attended by top officials from infrastructure-related Ministries, NITI Aayog, and PMO.
In course of the presentation made by CEO NITI Aayog, Amitabh Kant, it was noted that the installed power generation capacity in India has risen to 344 GigaWatts. India’s energy deficit, which stood at over 4 per cent in 2014, has shrunk to less than 1 per cent in 2018. Significant capacity additions have been made in transmission lines, transformer capacity, and inter-regional transmission.
India now ranks 26th in the World Bank’s “Ease of Getting Electricity” Index, up from 99th in 2014. Progress in household electrification under the SAUBHAGYA initiative, was reviewed. Discussions also focused on last mile connectivity and distribution, in both urban and rural areas.
In the new and renewable energy sector, cumulative installed capacity has nearly doubled, from 35.5 GigaWatts in 2013-14, to about 70 GigaWatts in 2017-18. In solar energy, installed capacity has increased from 2.6 GigaWatts to 22 GigaWatts in the same period. Officials expressed confidence that India is on track to comfortably achieve the Prime Minister’s target of 175 GigaWatts renewable energy capacity by 2022.
The Prime Minister urged the officials to work towards ensuring that the benefits from increase in solar energy capacity, reach the farmers, through appropriate interventions such as solar pumps, and user-friendly solar cooking solutions.
In the petroleum and natural gas sector, it was noted that targets set under the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana will be comfortably achieved in the current financial year. In the coal sector, discussions focused on further augmentation of production capacity.