Govt Goes Big On Programme To Install 2.5 Crore Smart Prepaid Electricity Meters, Earmarks Rs 22,500 CroreElectricity meters providing power supply in houses on March 10, 2014 in New Delhi, India. (Photo by Priyanka Parashar/Mint via Getty Images)

Going big on the installation of smart prepaid electricity meters, the government has earmarked a sum of Rs 22,500 crore for the installation of as many as 25 million such devices across the country under the Rs 3 lakh crore scheme which was approved recently by the Union Cabinet for the power distribution entities, reports Financial Express.

As per an office memorandum released by the Union Power Ministry on Thursday (22 July), the new smart meters are to be first installed in the 500 cities covered under the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) programme where aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) losses are higher than 15 per cent.

Other than this, installation of smart meters in the Union Territories (UTs), among industrial and commercial consumers, at government offices and in areas with high losses will also be prioritised.

It should be noted that Union Power Minister R K Singh has informed the Parliament that as many as 25.2 lakh smart meters have already been installed in the country, and another 81 lakh smart meters are in different stages of installation.

The total outlay for the smart-metering push will be Rs 1.5 lakh crore, of which the Centre will be providing Rs 900 per meter to the distribution companies, which comes to around 15 per cent of the cost of these devices. Further, states which are able to install smart prepaid meters before December 2023 will also be eligible for an additional incentive of Rs 450 per meter.

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