Flagship BPL electrification program underperforms
Ankita Chakrabarty/ Zee Research Group
UPA’s flagship programme, Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojna (RGGVY) has failed to meet its Below Poverty Line (BPL) household electrification target.
Official statistics furnished by the Power Ministry show that the rural electrification drive under RGGVY to electrify BPL households has fallen below its own stipulated target by about 31.4 per cent. A cumulative achievement report of the Power Ministry said that as of March 31, 2011, as against a target of 2, 32, 96,905 BPL households, only 1, 59, 80,381 households were actually electrified.
Arvind Mahajan, executive director, KPMG identified improper management of resources as the reason behind the deficit. He opined that “issues pertaining to rural electrification should be explained properly; moreover a proper track should be kept on the resource utilization for better execution of results.”
With an overall deficit, a state-wise performance revealed that Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh were among the worst performers with a huge gap in the target set and the achievement recorded. Also, northeastern states performed negatively in this regard.
Bibhu Biswal, head of distribution, The Independent Power Producers Association of India (IPPAI) said, “The correct list of BPL households is not available. Land availability is a big problem.”
However, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand were successful in achieving their respective targets.
As per the Cumulative Achievement under RGGVY, Madhya Pradesh had set a target to electrify 13, 78,256 BPL households but only 36, 44, 18 households were electrified. Also, for the state of Punjab, the target set was 14, 88, 60 but only 48,397 households were electrified.
Among the northeastern states the target set for Mizoram was to electrify 27,417 households but only 8,507 households were electrified. Also, the target set for Manipur was to electrify 10, 73, 69 households but only 9,393 households were actually electrified.
Tamil Nadu and Jammu and Kashmir were among the other states which were not able to achieve their respective targets.
Biswal of IPPAI lamented, “Proper co-ordination is required between the revenue department and state electricity department. Also, Central PSUs are not functioning very efficiently. There is lack of skilled manpower. The state government should have the urge/willingness to fulfill the gap.”