Numerous villages in the Dungarpur area of Rajasthan had never observed light after nightfall. Without any stable connection to the state electrical grid, they mostly depend on the Kerosene lamps. Now the situation has totally changed, because of The Solar Urja Lamp (SoUL) project – a brainchild of IIT Bombay – which was started in 2015 by distributing solar study lamps in rural areas changed it all.
Rukmani Devi Katara, Maya Roat, and Babli Devi have numerous things in like manner; they live in remote villages in Rajasthan’s Dungarpur district, they share a tribal heritage and have lived in poverty for whatever time that they can recall. In any case, today, it’s not their hardships or their way of life that ties them; rather, it’s the pride of getting to be an efficient entrepreneur. All this was possible because of the Solar Urja Lamp (SoUL) the project of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay.
This project is a boon for the women’s in the village. After the collaboration of IIT Bombay and the Rajasthan State Rural Livelihood Mission, also called as Rajeevika, which will manufacture solar lamps ranging from 1 to 300 watts. The plant will have a capacity to harvest up to 2 megawatts of solar energy. The project not only provides solar amp facilities in the remote areas but also provide employment opportunities and economic support to around 200 tribal women. By doing this, the employed women’s are no longer afraid to send their children to the local govt. school for further studies.
“An expenditure of one crore rupees is estimated on the plant, a corpus amount exceeding 24 lakh was collected for set up of the manufacturing plant by local women. We helped them in providing land and ensuring regulatory support,” Dungarpur collector Surendra Singh Solanki told TOI.
Rukmani, (a resident of Mandava village) studied up to Class 8 because of financial conditions in the family was unsound, as she had gone through the tough time in her life, she doesn’t want her four children to gone through the same situation. So she has put no such restrictions on her children, for whom she has planned a very different future, and she realized this after she got involved into the manufacturing of the Solar Urja Lamp.
“I have been able to make good money in these last couple of months, which I want to use to ensure that my children complete their education and get the kind of jobs that we couldn’t even dream of. My elder son is doing his diploma in engineering, one daughter is in Class 10 while the younger two are in Class 8 and 7, respectively,” she declares proudly.
In more than 281 villages, The IIT Bombay has launched the Solar Saheli project, in support of the main project SOUL, The Rajasthan State Rural Livelihood Mission, (Rajeevika), organized the women into four clusters of 40 Self Help Groups (SHGs) each. Every cluster has five office bearers. This project was just to provide training to the women about the processing of the Solar Urja Lamp. In the first stage, they educate women everything about the working of the lamp, assembling of the lamp etc.
IIT Bombay has propelled the Sun based Saheli wander, as a major aspect of its Spirit venture, in 281 towns spread over Dungarpur, Dovara and Jhonthri obstructs in the district. Initially, the Rajasthan State Rustic Employment Mission, or Rajeevika, ventured in to compose the ladies into four bunches of 40 Self-improvement Gatherings (SHGs) each. Each bunch has five office bearers, all ladies. Prior to the venture really started, mentors from IIT led a complete preparing program, isolated into two phases, at the Krishi Vigyan Kendra in Dungarpur.
In 10 days, ladies were acquainted with instruments, like, the millimeter and solar panels, and afterward educated to assemble the solar-powered lights.
After making women’s familiar with the concept of SOUL project, the next training is of preparing comprised of marketing strategies. Once the ladies effectively finished this module, leaders of the four clusters signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Chetan Singh Solanki, professor of solar energy at IIT-Bombay and principal investigator of the SOUL project within the sight of Rajasthan’s Rajasthan’s Minister of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Surendra Goyal. According to Prof. Solanki, SOUL venture was started two or three years ensure energy efficient lighting to class youngsters where oil lamps are the main source of light at night.
Till now, this innovation had brought light to more than one million children in different states of India including Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, and Rajasthan.
“With this model, the entire country can be electrified in two to three years. We want to make sure that no child in India has to give up studies because his/her home is without electricity. During my stay in Dungarpur, I learned that most rural families spend an average of Rs 200-250 on electricity for a single-phase domestic connection. I am working on a model where I can completely take them off the grid by providing them with three LED lights, one flashlight and a mobile phone charger for Rs 250 a month”-Prof. Solanki.