Meghalaya: Thermal project scrapped after solar project launch
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Agartala: The Government of Tripura in an attempt to promote renewable energy sources started electrifying Tripura State Rifle camps located in remote areas with solar energy.

This initiative has been undertaken to address the longstanding problems of TSR troopers posted in law and order duty in the remote areas of the state.

So far, eleven TSR posts have been transformed into solar energy-run camps, Power Minister Ratan Lal Nath told EastMojo: “The Central government has directed the state governments to give more importance to renewable energy sources and solar is a viable alternative we have. We have already upgraded the electricity transmission in eleven TSR camps from traditional grid power to solar power.

In collaboration with the police department, we are eager to do more.

In several areas, we have installed solar energy propelled water pumps as well for uninterrupted supply of drinking water for the TSR personnel assigned in duties at the hilly terrains”.

According to the Minister, maximum micro solar grids are installed in hilly areas of the Dhalai and Khowai districts of Tripura.

Stating that the Central government wants to convert 50 per cent of the state’s total power generation from solar energy, Nath said, “Solar energy has also helped extensively in reducing the cost of power. Several noted institutions in the state have installed solar panels on their roofs as a cost-cutting measure. The National Institute of Technology, which has recently installed solar panels, recorded a sharp drop in their monthly electricity Bill. In place of Rs 9 to 10 lakhs these institutions are now paying Rs 4 to 5 lakhs as a monthly bill for electricity use”.

The Power Minister has also informed EastMojo that a pilot project has been taken into hands for providing free of cost electricity to some villages using solar microgrids. “As many as 7,000 villagers will be benefited from this pilot project.

Village Committees and Panchayats have been shortlisted in West Tripura, Sepahijala, South Tripura, Khowai, North Tripura and Dhalai districts for implementation of the scheme. If the project gives the expected results we shall incorporate more villages under the free electricity initiative using solar microgrids,” Nath told EastMojo.

On being contacted, Joint Director Tripura Renewable Energy Development Agency (TREDA) Debabrata Sukla Das said, “This is nothing but an experiment to give relief to the poor villagers. Through this project, we shall install solar power plants in a village and connect them to the main power grid.

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The households connected with solar power plants may only have to pay the minimum charge for the main electricity connection as 90 per cent of the power requirement could be fulfilled from the solar power”.       

According to Das, for each installation, the state government will spend about Rs 1.25 crore.  

Also Read | Tripura CM seeks details on forest land encroachment amid protests

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