Prime Minister Narendra Modi may be gung ho about solar energy and starting a solar energy revolution in India, but Goa Chief Minister and technocrat Manohar Parrikar still has doubts about harnessing solar energy.
Parrikar, an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay, while speaking during a conference on 'Exploring Energy Frontiers' here, said: "Solar is there, but (with) solar (energy) the biggest problem is that whether solar (energy) can be really harnessed over a period of 24 hours."
Parrikar also said in the current circumstances with the easy availability of spurious solar equipment in the market, "the reliability factor has come down to such a level that today you are not willing to pay the price for a solar panel which is reliable".
The Modi-led National Democratic Alliance government has identified renewable energy, including solar energy as a thrust area, especially with Modi often using the Gujarat government's success in generating electricity from solar energy as an recurring illustration to make a point.
The chief minister instead, in his speech, pushed for starting small hydroelectricity generating mechanisms downriver all across India, with a capacity to generate small quantities of power like one or two megawatts (MW).
With such a low cost system, Parrikar said: "India can have 30,000 MW of power".
Parrikar also said the such units can also save costs of setting up a thermal grid to transport power, because the electricity generated at such stations could be consumed in areas closest to them.