Chandigarh, Punjab: The capacity of plant in Awan village, being set up by American company Azure Power, is proposed to be expanded to 5 MW. Abdullah switched on the plant and expressed his optimism of having more such projects in the coming years.

US based Azure Power set up a two MW solar plant. While several states in India have biomass power plants, the solar engagement has been limited essentially to photovoltic cells, and we have not really been able to implement solar power plants given the cost factor.

“This experiment of Awan would be soon replicated in entire border belt of Punjab with three solar power plants of 10 MW each in each border district. Punjab has already achieved 282 MW in renewable power sector and now it is aiming to increase it to 700 MW by the year 2011,” said Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal.

“We have an ambitious programme to produce 300 MW power from 20 million tones of rice husk through 28 biomass plants that would be set up in Punjab in the coming months,” he added.

Abdullah also laid the foundation stone of a 60 MW biomass-based green energy power plant of Lakshmi Energy and Foods Ltd at Khamanon village in Fatehgarh Sahib district.

Badal assured that Punjab would provide all assistance required by Lakshmi Group, one of the largest rice processing companies.

“Other entrepreneurs should also follow the example of Lakshmi Group to set up such biomass-based plants in different districts of Punjab as ample raw material is available throughout the state,” said Badal.

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