Focus on decentralised energy solutions for rural welfare: Dr Hande

A.J. Vinayak Mangalore | Updated on July 28, 2011 Published on July 28, 2011

drhande   -  Business Line

There is a need to adopt de-centralised energy solutions for the welfare of rural poor, according to Dr Harish Hande, Managing Director of Selco Solar Light Pvt Ltd and winner of this year's Magsaysay award.

In a telephonic conversation with Business Line on Thursday, he said that there are so many households in the country that are scattered, poor and who have limited need of power.

Because of the limited need, de-centralised power solutions such as very small hydro power projects, wind projects and solar lighting systems can be considered in places like Dakshina Kannada.

These can be done in most of the villages in the country.

“My question is whether we can do it today. Big power projects have own issues about coal, uranium and transmission and distribution lines, where we have to wait for 10-15 years,” he said.

Terming it as a big capital loss to the country, Dr Hande said 10-15 years mean a whole generation of young people will become old in that era. However, the de-centralised energy can be done quickly, he said.

Big power plants

On the cries about the need for establishing big power plants in the name of poor, he said, “Ultimately, if you see, these are going to the industrialists to make them money. These industries are getting the power. Actually power is not going to the poor people. In the name of poor, we want… But we actually don't provide them.”

The decentralised power gives empowerment for poor, and lot of people don't want the poor to be empowered, he said.

Asked how he felt on being the winner of the award, he said, “Following the footsteps of Elaben Bhatt and Acharya Vinobha Bhave is very challenging.”

He stressed the need to have capital that helps in creating processes rather than just sales.

Seeking the need for policy for social enterprises, he said, “In our country now you have policy for NGOs or policy for profit companies. There is no policy for social enterprises. That is exactly what we want to focus on.”

Published on July 28, 2011
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