Although West Bengal has electrified 80% of villages out of 37910 inhabited villages in the states, however, nearly 7500 inhabitate villages/hamlets are still to be electrified. The rural people in these villages are yet to get basic minimum facility of clean power, resulting in stagnation of agricultural and non form activities in rural areas. The lack of basic infrastructure also inciting mass migration of the rural youth to urban areas.
West Bengal Govt. through West Bengal Rural Electricity Development Corporation (WBREDC) is making concerted projects for electrification of rural areas. West Bengal Government has proposed to provide infrastructure for delivery of power, from 33 KV main distribution substations total 214 of the project area, to the rural houses and agricultural water pump sets, by creating infrastructure in phased manner. The project will benefit nearly 32 lakh people in about 3000 villages and hem lets.
2. Project Components :
The power supply infrastructure project, for rural electrification, comprises of the following components :
11 KV sub distribution lines - 3000 ckt. km.
11 KV spur lines/ connection - 3400 nos.
Installation of distribution transformers of capacities 100 KVA, 63 KVA, 25 KVA etc. adding to 150 MVA capacity to the distribution system. And
MV/LV distribution lines - nearly 6000 ckm in length.
The work involves erection of ACSR/AAC conductors, RCC/PCC/Wood poles, protection devices, distribution transformers, capacitors and metering etc.
3. Total Cost
The total outlay involved in the implementation of the project is Rs.181 crores and this will be completed by 2005.
4. Special Features:
These projects will be executed by WBREDC and will provide techno- commercial support for the implementation. However, there is a direct involvement of village community, in the form of gram panchayats / parishads, during execution of these projects.
5. Suggestions :
Rural youth including women may need to be given training / capacity building for operation and maintenance of the distribution system, conservation of power, accountability and effective use of electricity for overall development of the community.
State Govt. Could plan enhancement of upstream power system to provide quality power to these down stream distribution system.
National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development