National Workshop on ROOFTOP SOLAR POWER AND THE LAUNCH OF THE ‘SURYA MITRA’ MOBILE APP
The National Workshop on Rooftop Solar Power was held at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi on June 7, 2016. While addressing on this occasion, Shri Piyush Goyal, Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal and New & Renewable Energy said that efforts and commitment of all stakeholders made renewable energy (RE) targets achievable. On the occasion, Shri Piyush Goyal gave away 41 awards to the best performing Ministries/ Departments, State/UT Governments, State Nodal Agencies, State/UT Electricity Regulatory Commissions, and Channel Partners. Congratulating the awardees, Shri Goyal said that such awards not only encourage awardees to excel but also inspire the rest of us to put in our best efforts in the cause.
Forty-four Ministries and Departments also presented Commitment Certificates for developing Rooftop Solar (RTS) power. Speaking on the occasion, Shri P K Sinha, Cabinet Secretary, said that the biggest challenge comes from within the sector. He stressed that we have to work out business model in consultation with the regulators, which is beneficial for both Discoms and consumers. Shri Sinha said that although involving residential house tops for installing rooftop solar projects will not be that easy but will be worth the effort since it will provide volume to our initiative. Interacting with the stakeholders, Shri Upendra Tripathy, Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) told that the Government has received 3,200 MW commitment certificates from 44 Ministries and Departments. He also informed about the ten point step-by-step agenda to encourage rooftop solar power in the country. Around 1,400 participants including Secretaries from the Central Government, Chief Secretaries from the State Governments, Power and Urban Development Principal Secretaries of State Governments, State Nodal Agencies, Chiefs of DISCOMs, banking and financial institutions, Channel Partners of rooftop schemes, major solar power developers, international agencies, such as GIZ, KFW, US Aid, the World Bank, and other stakeholders across the country attended the Workshop.
The Minister Shri Goyal also launched a mobile app called ‘Surya Mitra’ App at the event.
The GPS-based mobile app has been developed by the National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE), which is an autonomous institution of MNRE. The Surya Mitra Mobile App is currently available in Google Play Store, which can be downloaded and used across India. This App is a high end technology platform which can handle thousands of calls simultaneously and can efficiently monitor all visits of Suryamitras. The trained Suryamitras who opt for entrepreneurship have joined in the Mobile App in several states. This innovative mobile approach shall enhance the employment of trained youth in solar PV technology and also improve the businesses of solar entrepreneurs because quality servicing, maintenance, and repairing professionals are now available to customers at the click of a button on their mobiles. MNRE has an ambitious target of installing 100,000 solar photovoltaic (PV) pumps in several states. Suryamitra Mobile App would come handy with respect to O&M, repair, and maintenance of solar pumps. Similarly, millions of square metres of solar water heater systems are already installed in various states. In order to maintain the existing system and to install new systems properly, Surya Mitra App would be very useful.