HYDERABAD: Telangana will become the first state in the country to supply free power 24-hours to the farm sector. The supply will start from the next Rabi season by which time the Discoms and Transco will be ready with the required infrastructure to be provided at an estimated cost of Rs 1,293 crore.
On Monday, chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao directed the power officials to get ready with 7,100 MW additional power to meet the increased demand from the farm sector.
He told Genco, Transco and Discoms officials to make Telangana the first state to provide 24-hour free power in the country. The game changing initiative is set to cost the state exchequer more than Rs 3,000 crore, which is to be borne by the state government as part of its promise to make agriculture a profitable venture.
The chief minister has instructed the Southern and Northern Discoms to conduct a pilot operation in their circles before the Rabi season. Discom officials informed the CM that to ensure 24-hour supply to the farm sector, they would require six 400 KV, 12 220 KV, 21 132 KV and 30 3311KV sub-stations.
They also informed the CM that the existing infrastructure needed to be upgraded besides laying of 689 km long transmission lines across 31 districts. This is expected to cost Rs 1,293 crore. Congratulating Transco, Gen co and Discom officials for supplying power even during the peak demand of 9,200 MW without any interruptions, the CM said uninterrupted power supply helped Telangana attract new investments and urged them to ensure that the farm sector too gets the same priority .
“We have already lined up three major thermal projects in the state and succeeded in getting the required permission. They include Bhadradri, Yadadri and Singareni expansion projects. The agriculture sector alone requires 5,000 MW once we launch the 24-hour farm sector supply . Before the launch, we will augment the transmission and distribution network to handle the increased load,” D Prabhakar Rao, CMD of Telangana Genco and Transco told TOI after the meeting.
The chief minister also directed the power utilities to regularize all contract employees working in the Discoms, Genco and Transco. The move is expected to regularize the services of about 20,000 employees who have been working as temporary staff for more than seven years.