While power availability in the country has significantly improved over the last few years, per capita availability of power in some states is just about 1/4th of the national average.
The Prime Minister recently launched the ‘Saubhagya’ scheme to ensure electrification for all willing households across the country.While we await the implementation of the scheme, data shows that availability of power has substantially improved in the last decade and at the same time some states have fallen behind. Per capita availability of power in 15 states is less than the national average and in some states is only about 1/4th of the national average.
Power requirement crossed 1000 billion units
The assessment of power requirement is made using the past data and trend analysis. This is done for each region/state and then aggregated at the national level. The power requirement at an All-India level almost doubled in 12 years between 2004-05 and 2015-16. The requirement in 2004-05 was 591 billion units. The requirement crossed 1000 billion units for the first time in 2013-14.
Only three states (Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh & Gujarat) reported a requirement of more than 100 billion units each in 2015-16. A total of nine (9) states reported a requirement of more than 50 billion units each. Except Uttar Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir, all the other states have reported to have met more than 90% of the requirement. Five (5) states reported to have met 100% of the requirement.
Power requirement does not reveal the true picture
But the requirement figures do not reveal the true picture of power availability in various states since it is calculated based primarily on past trends. There are multiple states where more than 40% of the rural households are yet to electrified. As of August 2017, 56% of the rural households are yet to be electrified in Jharkhand followed by 55% in Nagaland and 53.5% in Bihar. In Uttar Pradesh, 49% rural households are yet to be electrified. In fourteen (14) states, more than 20% rural households are yet to be electrified.
Some states way behind on per capita availability
As with the overall availability of power in the country, the per capita availability has also increased over the years. From 533 units per capita in 2004-05, the availability of power increased to 901 per capita in 2015-16. Except for the reduction in 2011-12, the per capita availability has increased continuously.
Per Capita Availability in Bihar & Jharkhand is just 1/4th the National average
Goa reported the highest per capita availability in the country with 3512 units. Fourteen (14) states have reported a per capita availability of more than 1000 units. Fifteen (15) other states reported a per capita availability of power in 2015-16 which is less than the national average of 901 units. Bihar with 229 units reported the least per capita availability of all the states. This is almost 1/4th of the national average. Jharkhand also reported only 230 per capita units. Nine (9) states reported less than 500 units of per capita availability in 2015-16.