Despite Indian Consumers Warming up to LED Lights, Some States are Delaying Streetlight Installation

Indian consumers are embracing the LED replacement wave, and have swapped more than 10 million traditional and CFL bulbs with LEDs within the last month, but some states have been delaying LED streetlight upgrades ahead of the upcoming elections, reported Indian media.

More states are jumping in to distribute LEDs through lighting centers established nationwide, reported The Economic Times.

The total number of lighting replacements in the country has topped more than 40 million as Indian states including Uttarakhand, Jharkhand and Karnataka join the Domestic Efficient Lighting Program (DELP).

The country’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the DELP scheme on January 5 this year. Other states and union territory including Rajasthan, Delhi, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh are rolling out the lighting replacement scheme.

Under the DELP scheme, LED bulbs are sold at a subsidized rate to replace traditional or CFL lamps in households. The program launched in July reached the 10 million milestone on Aug. 9, 2015. However, replacement rates have soared as manufacturers identify the merits from the scheme. Energy Efficiency Services Limited, a joint venture and part of a state-owned power company helped conserve more than 14 million kilowatt per hour of energy consumption per day. The bulbs have also effectively helped manufacturers avoid peak demand of 1,326 mw and INR 55.6 million in savings per day.

The Indian Power Minister Piyush Goyal has even stated recently of aiming to distribute 60 million LED bulbs via the DELP lighting scheme.

Despite many positive developments in the Indian market, not all states have been kept up with the lighting upgrades.

According to a separate article by The Hindu, Thiruvananthapuram, the capital of southern Indian state of Kerala, has recently delayed streetlight upgrades following objections submitted by the central government.

The Indian government objected a contract commissioning SIDCO to retrofit the city’s streetlights.

The financial credentials of SIDCO was also questioned by the government officials, while a final objection was raised about the party responsible for bearing the costs of extra tariff.

One of the local city officials pointed out the objections were without basis, and the contract had clearly indicated a total of 82,000 LED streetlights would be replaced across the city. The tariff rate would also be uniform for the entire duration of the decade long contract, and the local body would shoulder any extra tariff. From the official’s perspective, the recent objections was mostly a delaying tactic.

The city Corporation will be replying to the objections after Christmas, and it was made clear that the LED streetlight project would be delayed.