Continuing with our series on the Hits & Misses amongst the Policy initiatives undertaken by the Modi Government, our topic of discussion today is the Rural Electrification Drive known as the ‘Deen Dayal Upadhyay Gram Jyoti Yojana’. An extension of the erstwhile, Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana, under this scheme the Government plans to provide electricity to 1,21,225 un-electrified villages and intensive electric supply to over 5 lakh villages.
To start of with this policy has been a sure winner just by assessment of the sheer magnitude of work that is being undertaken. In Mr Modi’s recent speech at Wembley he mentioned that as many as 5,80,934 villages of the original 5,97,464 villages have been electrified as on September 30. As of now reports indicate a mere 16,530 Indian villages do not have electricity. I am sure that many of you would scoff at the figure saying that Govts tend to make tall claims but for a change this time on, citizens get an opportunity ti cross check facts before they decide to believe in it.
The current Minister of State with Independent Charge for Power, Coal, New, and Renewable Energy, Shri Piyush Goyal has now launched the Grameen Vidyutikaran Android app. This facilitates a real time platform to track the Govt’s progress in its rural electrification drive across the country.
The application launched by REC has been hosted by New Delhi-based Kyrosoft and available on all Android platforms. Those without an Android device can also track it via the real-time dashboard on the website. This dashboard gives key statistics like total number of un-electrified villages, villages where work is in progress and ones where survey has been conducted or is yet to begin.
The biggest positive of this initiative is the acknowledgement of the electorate and making effort to let them know about the actual progress that the Govt has achieved. For the first time perhaps, the average citizen of India has been made a stake holder and an active participant in assessing the Govt’s achievements. In other words this is perhaps a first firm footing towards undertaking transparent policy initiatives.
As the Deendayal Upadhyaya Grameen Jyoti Yojana continues to march ahead to meet its March 31, 2017 deadline for complete electrification of the country, a special kudos to Piyush Goyal for not just striving to take meaningful policy action but also not shying away for a real time assessment of the same.