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All You Wanted to Know About India’s DigiGaons

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Role of Solar in DigiGaon or Digital Village Initiative in India

The DigiGaon or Digital Village initiative was started to provide better and internet-based health and education services in rural areas. Services such as tele-education, Wifi and LED-based lighting was launched across three Indian states from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh. An initial investment of more than INR 420 crore was projected over three years. The initiative which was started last year, aims at connecting village with Wi-Fi, thus providing ample opportunities for growth and employment to its residents. In other words, these digital villages will allow its residents to avail different e-services of the Central as well as state Governments in a rural setting. Villagers can avail internet through coupons with rates starting from INR 5 to INR 100, with different validity and data limits. The project now aims at reaching 700 more villages across the country by the end of 2018, following the success of its pilot run.

solar panels india

For the first phase, villages in Haryana, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh have been chosen for the project.

The government has also announced the setting up of common service centers (CSC) to provide basic electronic services across 2.5 lakh Indian villages. All these activities will align the Indian villages towards becoming self-sustainable units. Solar lighting will also be used at these Digigaons or digital villages and most of these common service centers are expected to run on solar power going forward.

India has big solar plans for itself. The country is fast moving towards achieving its 100 GW solar target and is leaving no stone unturned. While it is definitely a positive to promote solar usage in cities and urban areas, using solar in rural areas/ villages is imperative for sustainability and power requirements. The country is also achieving many firsts in this regard:

i) India’s Guwahati becomes the first railway station in the world to completely run on solar power

ii) Punjab hosts the world’s largest Solar Rooftop Plant

Mini and microgrids are fast mushrooming the Indian villages. Solar is not only cheaper but also greener and a more sustainable way of lighting rural India, especially places having no grid connectivity. The Indian government is promoting solar in a big way to power the villages in India. Many companies and social enterprises are promoting solar for a social cause – the upliftment of rural population in India. Though everything looks bright and hopeful for the “Solar in India” propaganda, we hope for better implementation and clarity of policies in this regard, for better implications in the country as a whole.


Sneha Shah

I am Sneha, the Editor-in-chief for the Blog. We would be glad to receive suggestions, inputs & comments on GWI from you guys to keep it going! You can contact me for consultancy/trade inquires by writing an email to

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