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HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Chandigarh, July 16, 2013
Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal has urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to direct the union ministry of new and renewable energy to review its policy for subsidy on solar pumps for farmers, restoring the subsidy component to 80% with 10% contribution by the state and the rest from the beneficiary.

The union ministry had in 2004-05 reduced the subsidy from 80% to 30%, with the rest of the money to be borne by farmers, Badal told the PM in a communiqué, a spokesman said here on Tuesday.

The chief minister pointed out that Punjab had more than a million agriculture pump sets, adding that the power requirement for this sector was almost 25% of the total consumption in the state."The decentralised generation and utilisation of solar energy in the agricultural sector for water pumping is the best option to promote renewable energy," Badal added.