The Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Limited (KREDL) has invited bids for solar-powered fans and lights for 900 Anganawadi buildings across the state that come under the Ministry of Women and Child Development.
For the uninitiated, Anganawadis are rural child care centers run by the state governments with the primary objective of combating child hunger and malnutrition.
This tender involves the design, supply, testing, installation, and commissioning of the lights and fans along with a five-year comprehensive maintenance service.
The RfS documents will be available from May 6, 2019.
Off-grid solar solutions are gaining traction in India, especially in rural areas where intermittent electricity is a nagging problem.
To this end, last year, the government had announced that soon, 250,000 villages across India would have solar-powered internet under the Common Service Centers program. This initiative by the government is aimed at providing banking, pension, digital literacy, and telemedicine services to rural and remote villages.
Similarly, the government also announced in 2018 that it was planning to launch the Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan (KUSUM) program to solarize the agricultural sector using solar-powered water pumps and provide solar-powered electricity to rural areas.
To provide easy solar solutions in the hinterland, back in 2017, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) provided a $200 million loan to finance energy efficient lights and water pumps in India. The funds were to be received by the Energy Efficiency Services (EESL), which would then make loans available for installing light-emitting diode (LED) streetlights by municipalities and LED bulbs, tube lights, and electric fans by households and institutions, and for installing energy-efficient water pumps.
In an interesting development in Karnataka, India’s top state in terms of installed solar capacity, the government is looking to stop the tender and auction process for large-scale ground-mounted projects as power generation exceeds demand in the state. To this effect, the Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) has written to the Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Limited (KREDL) regarding the procurement of solar power.
Soumik is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Prior to joining Mercom, Soumik was a correspondent for UNI, New Delhi covering the Northeast region for seven years. He has also worked as an Asia Correspondent for Washington DC-based Hundred Reporters. He has contributed as a freelancer to several national and international digital publications with a focus on data-based investigative stories on environmental corruption, hydro power projects, energy transition and the circular economy. Soumik is an Economics graduate from Scottish Church College, Calcutta University.