Energising Rural India Using Distributed Generation: The Case of Solar Mini-Grids in Chhattisgarh State, India

  • Debajit PalitEmail author
  • Gopal K. Sarangi
  • P. R. Krithika
Part of the Green Energy and Technology book series (GREEN)


Conventional grid extension has been the predominant mode of electrification in India. However, solar photovoltaic technology has also been used for providing electricity access in remote, forested habitations and islands. Under the Remote Village Electrification Programme by the Government of India, around 12,000 villages and hamlets have been electrified using renewable energy. The state of Chhattisgarh in Central India has alone been able to electrify around 1,400 remote and forested villages through solar mini-grids. This chapter attempts to examine the development and operation of the solar mini-grid model for enhancing electricity access in India, with special focus on the state of Chhattisgarh. The work, based on extensive literature review, interview with key stakeholders and field visits to selected remote forested villages in the state of Chhattisgarh, shares the experiences and lessons of the solar mini-grid programme for rural electrification in the state by comprehensively analysing multiple dimensions of the programme such as coverage and trend, technical designs, institutional arrangements, financial mechanism and operation and maintenance aspects, which were key to the success of the solar mini-grids. We observe that robust institutional arrangement, strong policy support and an effective maintenance and an oversight mechanism have been the key contributing factors for the success of this initiative.


Solar Power Plant Capital Subsidy Operational Subsidy Rural Electrification Battery Bank 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We are grateful to Mr Shailendra Kumar Shukla, Director, CREDA, Mr Rajiv Gyani, Executive Engineer, CREDA and the CREDA district level officials from Raipur and Korba districts for providing secondary information on the various projects and sharing their insights with the TERI team.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Debajit Palit
    • 1
    Email author
  • Gopal K. Sarangi
    • 2
  • P. R. Krithika
    • 1
  1. 1.Social Transformation DivisionThe Energy and Resources InstituteNew DelhiIndia
  2. 2.Department of Policy StudiesTERI University, Institutional AreaNew DelhiIndia

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