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Madhya Pradesh government to help farmers buy solar water pumps

The government of Madhya Pradesh, India, is set to provide nearly 18,500 solar powered water pumps to farmers at subsidised rates.

According to the Times of India, the solar pumps are intended to increase the cultivatable land area, reduce dependency on diesel pumps and allow multi cropping.

“We are going to make available solar borewell and surface pumps fitted with remote monitoring system to the farmers under the Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Solar Pump Scheme shortly.” New and Renewable Energy Department principal secretary Manu Srivastava told PTI.

“We have already picked up the firms (through bidding) which are going to supply solar power to the state. The rates are much below the benchmark prices of (the) Government of India.” Srivastava continued.

“The rates of the direct pumps are the lowest in the country. These pumps will have a five-year maintenance provided under a contract.”

Although other regional governments in India have carried out similar schemes to provide farmers with pumps at subsidised rates, Srivastava claims the Madhya Pradesh initiative is the biggest so far. It is hoped that as well as supporting farmers in the region which has the highest agricultural growth rate in India, the initiative will also save the Madhya Pradesh government tens of millions of rupees each year.