Himachal CFL Scheme Has Saved Electricity, Reduced Consumer Bills – Dhumal

No scheme bulbs sold outside the state – CM

Shimla: Chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal let the Vidhan Sabha know today hat implementation of the a Rs 70 crore compact florescent lamb (CFL) scheme was paying dividends in saving electricity as well as reducing consumer bills and at the same time refuted allegations that CFL bulbs distributed under the scheme had been sold outside the state.

Replying to a discussion initiated by congressman Thakur Kaul Singh about CFL bulbs under the scheme reported to being sold in other states, the chief minister said that the supply order for CFL bulbs was placed with two companies, Sonepat based Socomec Ltd and Noida based Phoenix Lamps after a bidding process.

The two companies completed the supply order by 17 Februray, 2009 but reports surfaced on 28th July, 2009 that bulbs meant for HP state electricity board (HPSEB) were recovered from a shop in Moga. The matter was discussed with the general manager of M/s Phoenix Ltd, the supplier firm.

The management has clarified that unutilized packing boxes meant for HPSEB supply for replacement of fused CFL bulbs were used by them after covering a board message with opaque paper.

The company has also stated in writing that the all such packing boxes since then have been withdrawn.

“It goes to show that CFL bulbs distributed under the scheme by HPSEB in the state, have not been sold outside the state, said Dhumal.

However, he said, the government has issued a show cause notice to the firm on 3rd August, 2009 as to why it should not be blacklisted for acts of omission, commission and wanton negligence.

Earlier, the chief minister said that the Atal Bachat Bijli scheme under which four CFL bulbs of 15 and 20 Watt were distributed free to 16 lakh domestic consumers in exchange for incandescent bulbs had been well received in the state and had even got appreciation from World Bank as well as the Sushil Kumar Shinde, the union minister for power.

The distribution started from Kullu on 23.11.2008 and upto July 2009 about 89% consumers had availed the free bulbs. About 1.45 lakh bulbs were found fused and have been replaced as they carry a 18 month trouble free warranty.

The changeover is estimated to have saved about 68.65 MU of energy between January and May 2009, which is expected to accrue additional revenue of Rs 6.59 crore to HPSEB, he said.

The government has provided Rs 70 crore interest free loan to HPSEB for the scheme, which is estimated to cost Rs 65.12 crore. The power utility board is trying to claim CDM benefits for the scheme, the chief minister.

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