Come March, Jaitu biomass plant in Punjab to generate power from paddy stubble
A private plant is all set to generate power from paddy stubble from March next year in Faridkot’s Jaitu.
The 18 megawatt plant, being set up under the Union government’s “Make in India” scheme, will generate electricity by using straw as fuel. The power thus generated will be sold to Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) for which an agreement has been signed.
The plant authorities have already purchased 15,000 tonnes of paddy stubble from farmers at ₹3,000 to ₹3,500 per acre. A Ferozepur-based firm, Sukhbir Agro Energy Limited, has started construction of the plant on the Bajakhana-Jaitu road in Faridkot district.
Project manager Karamjit Singh said they have tied-up with baling machine owners who sell paddy stubble after converting it into bales. They will be paid on weekly basis, he said, adding: “We have set a target to purchase 1 lakh tonnes of straw this season and will double the purchase next year once the plant is functional. He said farmers from Faridkot, Muktsar and Bathinda are coming forward to sell stubble.
Baling machine owner Gurdit Singh of Muktsar said he has sold 700 tonnes of straw to the firm. A farmer, Baldev Singh, said the cost to convert 100 kg of paddy straw into bales is between ₹50 and ₹60. “And we get ₹120 per quintal for straw bales. This is a win-win situation for us,” he said.
Faridkot additional deputy commissioner (general) Gurjit Singh said in September, the administration organised awareness programmes against stubble burning. Farmers were more than eager to sell stubble for a good price, he added.