Renewable energy is fast emerging as Sun rising sector for Non Resident Indians (NRI's) due to investor friendly unique policies of Punjab with more than Rs 1500 crore worth of investment in solar energy fructifying in last three years with total generation capacity of 225 MW. By 2017, 1000 MW of solar energy would be generated in Punjab, which would be the maximum in the country.Welcoming the new trend of investment in solar energy sector, Mr Bikram Singh Majithia, Minister for New & Renewable Energy, Revenue, Information & Public Relations, said that it took them a lot of time in convincing non resident Punjabis that Punjab is set to emerge number one state in harnessing renewable energy in next decade and said that he was happy that his dream of generating 10 percent power requirement through renewable energy sector is all set to be accomplished in next three years.
It may be mentioned here that UK-based NRIs Mr Avtar Singh Kang and Mr Raovarinder Singh Kang have set up 1 MW solar energy project in their ancestral village, Lallian Kalan (District Jalandhar). This solar energy project has been constructed by their company named, Ik Energy Pvt Ltd, on seven acres of land with an investment of Rs 7.25 crore. While speaking on the occasion, Mr Avtar Singh Kang thanked the Punjab government for easy clearance of this project. He said that they did not face any bureaucratic grapevine and this project was commissioned smoothly within six months. He said PEDA and PSPCL facilitated the execution of the project and assured that his family is interested in investing more in Punjab. He said that his two sons want to come up with two such 2.5 MW each of solar energy projects in Punjab shortly. He urged other NRIs to invest in Punjab due to the pro-business policies formulated by Chief Minister Mr Parkash Singh Badal and Deputy Chief Minister Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal.
While addressing the gathering, Mr Bikram Singh Majithia said that several NRI's are investing in different projects in Punjab. He informed that in last one year alone, NRI's have invested Rs 228 crore in different renewable energy projects alone. This includes Mr Sanjay Rai from Slovakia who invested Rs 29 crore for a 4.2 MW project, Mr Jaspal Deol from USA who invested Rs 16 crore for a 2 MW project, Mr Inderpreet Singh and others from USA (AZUR Power) who invested Rs 176 crore in a 34 MW project, besides several others.Majithia informed that one Mr Ranbir Singh Chhina from USA will be investing Rs 16 crore for a 2 MW project at Chhina Bidhi Chand in Tarn Taran district. He said that this project would be inaugurated within this month and the same NRI has assured further investment in renewable energy sector in Punjab.
Bikram Singh Majithia further informed that for safeguarding the interests of NRI's when it comes to their ancestral property, the Punjab government has come up with a new land lease scheme which is highly suitable for the NRI's. He said that the NRI's can give their land on lease for solar energy projects for a period of 27 years and PEDA would ensure there is no scope of illegal possession or change in revenue record. He said that NRI's can also adopt net metering policy of PEDA in which they can generate their own electricity by installing solar panels on their rooftops when they are away. They can easily bank it with PSPCL and use it when they come back to India.
Majithia said that India’s largest rooftop plant of 7.50 MW at Radha Soami Satsang at Beas (Amritsar) would be expanded to 31.5 MW which would make it the world’s largest rooftop PV plant. Mr Majithia thanked the Radha Soami Satsang, Beas for contributing in a big way for saving our environment. The minister also requested the managements of other religious place to install rooftop solar power plants on their premises.Mr Majithia said that due to these initiatives, the Punjab government had been awarded by the Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy for being one of the best performing States as far as capacity addition was concerned. He said PEDA had also been declared one of the best performing State nodal agencies under the energy conservation programme during 2012 & 2013 by the Union Ministry of Power. He further added that more than 1100 Applications have been received under net metering Solar Roof top and the Government was going to further promote the concept ‘Generate your own Clean and Green Energy and protect the environment for future generations’.
Prominent among those present on the occasion included PEDA CEO Dr Amarpal Singh, former Minister Mr Sarwan Singh Phillaur, CPS Mr Pawan Kumar Tinu, Youth Development Board Director Mr Meetpal Singh Dugri, Youth Akali Dal Doaba president Mr Sarabjot Singh Saabi, Deputy Commissioner Mr K K Yadav, SSP Mr.Jaspreet Singh Sidhu, SDM Jalandhar-2 Mr VPS Bajwa, SP D Mr Harkanwalpreet Singh Khakh, Former Chairman Jalandhar Improvement Trust Mr.Baljit Singh Neelamahal,Mr.Charanjeev Singh Lalli , besides several others.