SOULS -Students in power deficit areas to get solar power lamps in UP

School children in remote parts of Pallia and Nighasan blocks on Indo-Nepal border will no longer have to burn the midnight kerosene oil for studying.


SoULS or ‘Solar Urja through Localisation for Sustainability’— a joint initiative of the Union ministry for new and renewable energy (MNRE) and IIT Bombay — is likely to change the face of villages, which have no electricity supply. They will provide 90,000 subsidised solar lights to students of Pallia, Nighasan and Lakhimpur blocks. Notably enough, SoULS project covering UP, MP, Odisha, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh has earned the PM Award in Dungarpur (Rajasthan) this year for its successful implementation.


UP project head of IIT-Bombay Shailendra Dwivedi says,“Under MNRE guidelines, the IIT-Bombay in association with UP National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM) and Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) will be distributing 34 lakh solar lights to schoolchildren till class 12 in 29 districts of UP.’ The SHG members assembling and distributing the solar light would earn Rs 12 and Rs 17 per unit respectively.


The project has also become a source of livelihood for women of self-help groups of these blocks as they have started assembling solar lights from December 15 following their training by IIT-Bombay experts. EESL is providing material to assemble the lights.

Deputy commissioner NRLM Ajay Pandey says, “80 women self-help group members have been engaged to assemble the solar lights, which will be sold to school children at subsidized rates of Rs 100 per unit against their actual cost of Rs. 700.”

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