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To woo voters, Rajasthan government announces free power connections

The government will provide free connections under the Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Scheme.

jaipur Updated: Apr 19, 2018 22:06 IST
Mukesh Mathrani
Mukesh Mathrani
Hindustan Times, Barmer
A woman works in a field in Shekhawati area in Rajasthan. The move will benefit around 15 lakh families in the state. (HT Photo)

After waving off farm loans, the state government has now announced free domestic power connections to 7.60 lakh families, including 2.25 lakh BPL families. The move will benefit around 15 lakh families in Rajasthan.

The government will provide free connections under the Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Scheme. Also, the 8.6 lakh households, which are not covered under the Deendayal Upadhyaya scheme, will be given connections under the Saubhagya Scheme.

Families covered under the Socio-Economic Caste Census 2011 will be given free connections under the Saubhagya Scheme, while the rest of the families will be given connections at Rs 500 in 10 instalments.

“Earlier, we used to charge Rs 3,700 from each beneficiary, now we have got the direction to provide free connections under both schemes,” said Ashwani Kumar Bohra, executive engineer at Deendayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Scheme in Barmer.

He also said that families excluded from Socio-Economic Caste Census 2011 will be given connections at Rs500 in 10 instalments.

Bohra said that they have identified 213456 beneficiaries in Barmer district for electrification under these schemes. According to Bohra, they have issued demand notices to 152727 applicants till date, out of which 60717 have deposited Rs 3,700. Bohra said that the applicants, who have deposited the amount after October 20 last year, will be refunded by adjusting the amount with their electricity bills.

He added that out of 60717 applicants who have deposited the amount, 28059 have applied under ‘Mukhya Mantri Sabke Ki Liye Vidhyut Yojna’ in 2013. He said that those 28059 applicants won’t get the benefit of the recent announcement as they have deposited the amount before October 20 last year.

The opposition Congress has alleged that the BJP is misleading voters with such announcements. Congress district vice president Yagyadutt Joshi said that people are ready to pay for power connections, but due to lack of material and other resources, the department is not releasing their connection. He said that the government has intentionally delayed the process.

Joshi claimed that the previous Congress government had started the electrification process under the Rajeev Gandhi Gram Vidhyutikaran Yojna, but soon after coming to power, the BJP government scrapped that scheme. He alleged that the BJP government is aware that the credit goes to the Congress and now they are misleading people.

First Published: Apr 19, 2018 22:06 IST