Published On: Sun, Jun 12th, 2016

Shiyal Bet: Island in Gujarat gets electricity for the first time since Independence

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Shiyal Bet, an island located off Pipavav port in Amreli district, has got electricity for the first time since Independence. Chief Minister Anandiben Patel Saturday inaugurated the Rs 18.35-crore project to supply grid power to the island through marine cables. The CM unveiled a plaque dedicating the electrification project to the public at a ceremony organised in the compound of the newly-built Government Secondary School in Shiyal Bet on Saturday morning.

Residents to get electricity connection and 2 LED bulbs free of cost

The chief minister also announced that all families in Shiyal Bet will get electricity connections free of cost, in addition to two LED bulbs to ensure minimum electricity bill. Gujarat provides families that live below poverty line power connections for free, but others have to spend an average of Rs 4,500 for it. The Shiyal Bet project is an important part of the prime minister’s target to electrify 18,000 villages in India by mid-2018.

The village functioned on a solar power system earlier, which could light only one bulb and recharge mobile phones, said the principal of Government Secondary School in Shiyal Bet, Janmejaysinh Chuauhan, adding that they will now be able to offer computer education to students. A local fisherman said, “So far, we had to make do with kerosene lamps, as solar lights do not last due to sea moisture. But the grid power will be a big thing.”

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