Taking a step further to fight climate change, India has launched the new Ujala Scheme under which the world’s cheapest LED bulbs will be provided in rural areas. The bulb will cost as low as Rs ₹10. Union power and new and renewable energy minister Raj Kumar Singh
In the first phase of the launch, as many as 15 million LED bulbs will be distributed across villages of Arrah (Bihar), Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh), Vijaywada (Andhra Pradesh), Nagpur (Maharashtra), and western Gujarat.
The new bulbs are being offered by state-run Energy Efficiency Services Ltd’s subsidiary Convergence Energy Services Ltd (CESL) by leveraging scale. The scheme has plans to distribute as many as 600 million bulbs in the rural sector.
The initiative is a part of the government’s step to not only motivate people to shift to LED bulbs but also curb the greenhouse gases that the old yellow bulbs spew. The effort will also help in saving electricity. The scheme will save as much as 9,428 megawatts of electricity. This will slightly ease the burden on the discoms that usually run on losses.
“Gram Ujala programme will be financed entirely through carbon credits and will be the first such programme in India,” said CESL in a statement. Under the new scheme, the rural consumer’s incandescent and CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) bulbs will be taken back.
“Under the programme, 7 watt and 12 watt LED bulbs with three years’ warranty will be given to rural consumers only if they submit their working incandescent bulbs.
The government’s previous Ujala (Unnat Jyoti by Affordable Lighting for All) scheme had cut LED bulb prices to ₹70 apiece from around ₹310 in 2014.