solar-powered village, Modi, Gujarat, Modhera village, Mehsana, solar energy
Solar panels on rooftops of residential houses in Modhera | Pic: ANI/Twitter

All about India’s first solar-powered village that Modi will unveil today

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 9 will declare Modhera in Mehsana as India’s first village with solar power running continuously. The prime minister is on a two-day visit to Gujarat, where assembly elections are to be held later this year.

As per an official release, the project to make Modhera the first solar-powered village in the country is a joint effort by the central and state governments.

₹80.66-crore project

The state government allotted 12 hectares of land to develop the project at Sajjanpura village. An amount of ₹80.66 crore has been spent on a 50:50 basis by both central and state governments in two phases – ₹69 crore in Phase I and ₹11.66 crore in Phase II.

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“This project, which is first of its kind, realises the prime minister’s vision of solarization of the sun-temple town of Modhera. It involved developing a ground mounted solar power plant and more than 1,300 rooftop solar systems on residential and government buildings, all integrated with Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS). The project will demonstrate how India’s renewable energy prowess can empower people at the grassroots,” a government statement said.

During the day time, the village will get solar power and at night, it will be powered by BESS.

More than 1,300 solar panels have been put on village homes, the Gujarat government reported in a series of tweets, providing the people with electricity 24 hours a day. Significantly, they will receive cost-free solar electricity.

‘60-100 per cent saving’

People will save 60 per cent to 100 per cent in electricity bills with this project, the Gujarat government release said. “Use of solar power has increased prosperity amongst citizens. Power bills were above Rs 1,000 and have almost reduced to zero today. Solar panels have been installed at all feasible houses, free of cost. In case of excess power, we earn extra income too,” according to Jatanben Thakor, sarpanch of Modhera.

As per the 2011 census, Modhera village in Becharaji Taluka has a population of 6,373 people.

3-D display at Modhera Sun temple

PM Modi will also dedicate a 3-D projection facility at Modhera’s Sun temple, a protected ancient site. The solar-powered 3-D display will inform tourists about the history of Modhera. Heritage lighting has been put on the temple grounds as part of the renovation. People can visit the temple between the hours of 6 and 10 pm to see the lighting. Every evening, the 3-D projector will be in use.

In accordance with the Prime Minister’s goal of boosting the use of renewable energy in India, it has assured the sustainable implementation of a number of welfare projects in Gujarat, the Gujarat government claims.

Also read: Major push for solar energy & EVs, little for climate change, forests

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to launch development projects worth ₹14,500 crore during a visit to Gujarat from October 9 to 11, the PM’s Office said in a statement on Saturday. Gujarat is set to go to polls later this year.

(With agency inputs)

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