Pavagada solar park inaugurated

Siddaramaiah calls ‘Shakti Sthala’ the Eighth among ‘Wonders of the World’

Updated - March 02, 2018 01:45 pm IST

Published - March 02, 2018 12:19 am IST - Tumakuru

Pavagada: A worker conducts routine checks of solar panels at the newly inaugurated "Shakti Sthala, the 2,000 Mega Watt Solar Power Park, in Pavagada Taluk situated about 150 kms from Bengaluru on Thursday. PTI Photo by Shailendra Bhojak  (PTI3_1_2018_000188B)

Pavagada: A worker conducts routine checks of solar panels at the newly inaugurated "Shakti Sthala, the 2,000 Mega Watt Solar Power Park, in Pavagada Taluk situated about 150 kms from Bengaluru on Thursday. PTI Photo by Shailendra Bhojak (PTI3_1_2018_000188B)

Karnataka achieved one more milestone in the solar sector with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Thursday inaugurating the first phase of the Pavagada solar park, which is set to become the world’s largest when it attains its full potential of 2,000 MW.

The first phase of the park has 600 MW while another 1,400 MW will be added by December 2018. It is located in Thirumani of Tumakuru district and has been christened ‘Shakti Sthala’.

Addressing a public meeting at Thirumani to mark the inauguration of the first phase, Mr. Siddaramaiah termed the solar park as the “Eighth among Wonders of the World” built at an estimated cost of ₹16,500 crore.

Describing it as a historical day, Mr. Siddaramaiah said setting up the world's largest solar park is an important milestone in the history of Karnataka.

“We are thankful to all those farmers who have leased out their lands to the government for the project,” he said, adding that 2,300 farmers of five villages of Pavagada taluk have leased out 13,000 acres of land at ₹21,000 per acre per annum with 5% increase once in two years. They have joined the government as partners, shareholders, stakeholders, and are also beneficiaries of the mega project.

Boost to region

Shakti Sthala will help boost economic activity in the most backward and drought-prone Pavagada taluk.

Shakti Sthala is expected to attract industries, which in turn will help in job creation and prevent migration of unemployed youth, he said. Before establishing the project, the land rates in the area were around ₹25,000 per acre, but now it has touched ₹ 5 lakh per acre, he said.

Towards self-reliance

Energy Minister D.K. Shivakumar said Karnataka will become self-reliant in power generation.

He pointed out that the initiative was unique: neither has land been acquired, nor have farmers lost their land for the project. They have leased out their land to the government for 28 years, remaining owners of their land. District-in-charge Minister T.B. Jayachandra was also present.

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