Odisha Government Gives Directions to Expedite Rural Household Electrification

State Minister Dibya Shankar Mishra, who heads the Odisha Government’s Department of Energy, has issued directions to top officials to achieve rural household electrification targets pending in the state. The development came during a recent meeting on the department’s key projects, wherein he reviewed the status of several ongoing works and programmes relating to infrastructure, village electrification, implementation of 5T and Mo Sarkar initiatives.

Although the state has achieved 100% electrification on paper, several rural districts do not have household electrification. In such cases, the power connections are only extended up to a substation, but not diverted further into domestic houses. The minister has asked for the completion of household electrification within the next few months, sources have said.

Mishra also reviewed the progress of the Odisha Distribution System Strengthening Project (ODSSP). Under the ODSSP, the state government has planned to set up 473 sub-stations of 33/11-KV capacity, to address the low-voltage problem in rural areas. First sanctioned in 2013-14 with an initial budget outlay of ₹2600 crores, about 95% of work on substations have been already completed and commissioning of all such stations is being targeted by June this year. The contract was won by Odisha Power Transmission Limited (OPTL).

Due to delays and other inflationary constraints, the project has now been reinvigorated with a ₹4000 crore outlay. The ODSSP is one of the most important projects to have been undertaken by the BJD administration, as it also aims to reduce technical loss.

The minister also emphasised the need for quality power supply to all customers and said that the officers should remain responsive and alert to the needs of the general people. He also talked of accountability for quality power supply and proactive service delivery, especially in remote areas.

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