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‘Wide scope for tapping solar power in TN’

Special Correspondent
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Bright future:S.Raghu Vatsa Chari, Chief Regional Manager, IOB, speaking at a meeting on solar power in Thanjavur.Photo: B.Velankanni Raj
Bright future:S.Raghu Vatsa Chari, Chief Regional Manager, IOB, speaking at a meeting on solar power in Thanjavur.Photo: B.Velankanni Raj

While Gujarat and Rajasthan lead the country in solar power generation , there is wide scope for tapping solar power in Tamil Nadu, said S.Raghu Vatsa Chari, Chief Regional Manager, Indian Overseas Bank, here on Wednesday.

Speaking at a meeting on renewable energy - solar power - organised by the Thanjavur Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr.Chari said that Gujarat generated 900 MW of solar power while Tamil Nadu generated only 12 MW. There is wide scope for improving solar power generation in Tamil Nadu.

He said that Indian Overseas Bank has been giving loans for putting up solar equipment. The scheme, IOB Surya, offers finance for purchase of off-grid renewable solar energy equipment in India such as solar cookers, solar heaters and home/indoor lighting systems. Under Scheme A of IOB Surya, meant for salaried individuals, minimum loan amount of Rs.30,000 and maximum of Rs.10 lakh is given. Scheme B is applicable for all business enterprises and educational institutions, hospitals and hotels.

While the minimum loan limit is Rs.1 lakh the maximum is Rs.10 lakh. Subsidy up to 30 per cent is available from the government.

S.T.Ravikumar, assistant general manager, National Bank for Agriculture ad Rural Development (NABARD), Thanjavur district, said that though NABARD focuses on agriculture and rural development, as a special case the bank is offering loan facility for purchase of solar equipment in both rural and urban areas. Funding is provided to individuals, self help groups and non-governmental organisations to tap solar resources.

V.Venkatesh, director, Sun Sine Solutions Private Ltd, said that at a time when fossil fuels are depleting and Tamil Nadu is facing acute power shortage, solar power is the only option for people.

Hybrid solar equipment can help people overcome power shortage and reduce power consumption. Solar equipment can function in connection with grid, generators and invertors. They can provide power supply continuously for 10 hours but they are day time solutions and not night time solutions. K.Padmanabhan, president of the chamber and N.T.Balasundaram, secretary of the chamber also spoke.

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