New Delhi, July 24 : The Delhi Cabinet on Tuesday approved a scheme under which farmers in the national capital can lease out part of their agricultural land for setting up solar panels for additional income.
Under the 'Mukhyanmantri Kissan Aaye Badhotri Solar Yojna,' approved at a Cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, any farmer can rent out not more than one third of his land to a private firm to set up solar panels at a rate of Rs one lakh per annum per acre.
The scheme will start in nine months and at least five solar companies have evinced interest.
"The panels will be set up at a height of 3.5 metres, so that the land can also be used for agriculture," Kejriwal told the media here.
Kejriwal said that the annual income of beneficiary farmers estimated at present between Rs 30,000 and Rs 50,000 per acre per year will increase to between Rs 1.30 lakh and Rs 1.5 lakh following implementation of this scheme.
These farmers will also get 1,000 units of free solar power without any investment, Kejriwal said.
The Chief Minister said that the Delhi goverment departments will buy solar power from companies participating in the scheme.
"Our departments now buy electricity at Rs 9 per unit, but this will come down to Rs 5 per unit due to this scheme, saving us Rs 400 crore to Rs 500 crore annually," Kejriwal said.
The Delhi government plans to generate 2,000 MW in solar energy by 2025.