Planning for Karnataka State
The "power crisis" in Karnataka is likely to be a fairly long-term
problem of the State. This situation demands an in-depth analysis of the
entire energy problem of Karnataka. Initially, this analysis may be restricted
to electrical energy, the planning of which involves two aspects, namely,
generation and utilisation. KSCST, therefore, initiated a project on the
distribution and consumption of LT (less than 11 KV) electrical energy.
The studies have shown that electrification of backward taluks leads only to a marginal development. Only 9 - 10% of the population of electrified villages can afford domestic connections. The irrigation potential is not fully exploited, probably due to lack of access to credit for small farmers. Over 30% of Karnataka's landholdings are below 0.73 hectares whereas Land Banks require 0.6 to 1.0 hectares as security (collateral) for advancing credit for pumpsets. Industries, large, medium and also small, have proliferated only in cities and prosperous taluks. The average increase in motive power has been 50 HP/year in backward taluks, providing new employment to only 6 people/year.
Time lag for utilisation of the available power is indefinitely large for backward taluks. Only a few advancing taluks, power is used up as soon as it becomes available.
Electrification leads to development of backward areas only when the increase of utilisation of electrical energy in irrigation and industry are planned for simultaneously.