Gujarat’s solar cooperative sets example as Jaitley talks of mechanism for purchasing solar power from farmers

On a day when Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley asked state governments to put in place necessary mechanisms to purchase excess solar power from farmers operating solar-water irrigation pumps, nine small farmers in Gujarat who are part of the country’s first solar cooperative have set an example by selling 98,000 units of solar power worth Rs 6.98 lakh to the state government in just 20 months.

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In the process, these farmers from Dhundi village of Kheda district, who used to be dependent on local lenders for funds, have not only doubled their incomes, but improved their lifestyles. “It is a matter of pride that our cooperative model stands to be emulated in other parts of the country,” said Pravin Parmar, secretary of the solar cooperative Dhundi Saur Urja Utpadak Sahakari Mandali while reacting to the budget speech of Jaitley.

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