Project Suryaprakash helps to light up villages in Maharashtra
Two Maharashtra villages recently experienced electricity for the first time — thanks to Tata Power Community Development Trust’s (TPCDT) new initiative ‘Project Suryaprakash’. Remotely located Limbarvadi and Bhadaskonda villages in the Mulshi region of Pune benefitted from the project.
The project is one of the initiatives to facilitate the implementation of a NABARD scheme of solar energy based home lighting system (HLS). It is being provided technological support by Tata BP Solar.
“Project Suryaprakash was launched with an aim to empower the existing network of self help groups (SHGs) in the process of creating awareness and making HLS accessible to communities. As the existing network of SHG comprises mostly women, the project has been designed to empower womenfolk. Training programmes have been designed for the beneficiaries and the trainees. Mostly women will be assisting the Tata team in the installation process,” a company release stated.
The uniqueness of the project is that the villagers themselves are doing the entire funding, training, operations and maintenance jobs and TPCDT has only been a facilitator by tying up with NABARD for government subsidy and bank loans.
According to the model, the SHG will be running the scheme, employing two persons and will be responsible for repayment of loans. TPCDT also plans to sign a memorandum of understanding with Bank of Maharashtra for financing the project.
S. Padmanabhan, chairman of TPCDT, said that the project aims at lighting up 1,000 households of various communities in Maharashtra. “We look forward to the support of various stakeholders who will be instrumental in fulfilling the lighting requirements of the targeted number of households,” he added.