First photovoltaic solar energy plant in Uttar Pradesh

Situated at Naini, about 25 kms from Allahabad, the 5 MW solar power plant developed by Kolkata-based company, EMC Limited, as part of the Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy’s Jawharlal Nehru National Solar Mission became operational on March 4.

"It took us nearly seven years to complete the solar energy project which involved a budget of Rs 80 crore. The cost-effectiveness of this project can also be gauged from the fact that its maintenance would involve an yearly expenditure of not more than 70 lakh", Pankaj Kumar Chhonkar, project manager of the EMC, told PTI.

He said electricity is being generated with the help of "21,300 solar modules which keep functioning efficiently even when the weather is overcast and involve virtually no environmental hazards which have been a major cause of concern with regard to power plants".

"The EMC had been entrusted with this project by the NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam, with which the company has signed a power purchase agreement ensuring a sale for the next 25 years", Chhonkar said, adding that a total of 25 acres of land has been utilized for the purpose.

He said as per the agreement, "the Nigam will help EMC recover its costs while the private company will have to work in coordination with Poorvanchal Vidyut Vitran Nigam Ltd, a subsidiary of UP Power Corporation Ltd, and supply electricity to wherever requirement is felt".

"The EMC has been in the business of power generation and transmission for over four decades. Keeping up with the demands of our times, we seek to make use of our expertise in providing green and clean energy. Solar power has been a huge success in Rajasthan and Gujarat where a large number of such plants are functioning," he said.