Government aims to save as much as Rs 10,000 crore annually by leveraging information technology to ramp up its power distribution network in urban towns by January 2019. Moving in this direction, the Power Ministry is likely to award the works to have IT-driven power distribution in as many as 2,636 towns across the country by December this year.
The entire work will take at least two years after the award of works. “The detailed project report for making IT enabled power distribution system in 2,636 urban towns will be ready in two months. Power Ministry will be able to award the work by December this year. It will take two years to complete the task thereafter,” a senior official said.
The official further said: “This requires an investment of about Rs 1 crore in each town because the Centre with state governments have already created other required infrastructure like data and customer centres under the Restructured Accelerated Power Development and Reforms Programme (R-APDRP).”
“As per our latest study, the estimated savings across 76 such towns with IT enabled power distribution system across 14 states was Rs 185 crore. If we extrapolate that to 1,226 towns which have gone live online, then it comes to around Rs 5,000 crore every year. Once all 4,041 urban towns will be linked online, the savings would be to the tune of Rs 10,000 crore annually,” the official added. R-APDRP had covered 1,405 urban towns in the country but out of these 1,226 were made to have IT enabled power distribution system. IT enabled power distribution systems helps discoms reducing aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) losses.
This aids them to monitor the feeders online. Besides IT driven power distribution system provides consumers a host of services like online bill payment, applying for new connection and knowing status of power supply situation in these towns in real time basis.
As part of the project, as many as 48 engineers designated as Urban Vidyut Abhiyantas (UVAs) were roped in July this year to assist the discoms, facilitating better consumer connect and monitoring of Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS).