Tribune News Service
Shimla, August 20
Dark streets in the capital city will be a thing of the past. Now these will be illuminated by LED lights through a smart streetlighting project launched here today by Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh.
Virbhadra named the project as the Rajiv Gandhi Illuminating Scheme for Hill Town Advancement on his 71st birth anniversary today. “Dharamsala, Sundernagar, Paonta Sahib, Hamirpur, Ghumarwin and Manali will be illuminated with smart streetlights soon, while other towns will get these before March 2016,” he added.
He said the smart lights would replace over 63,484 old streetlight fixtures and save 45 per cent to 55 per cent energy worth Rs 3.20 crore and Rs 6.5 crore in terms of maintenance cost every year. This new computerised streetlight system would deliver Wi-Fi and the mechanised sweeping services to keep towns waste-free.
Deputy Mayor, Shimla, Tikendar Panwar, said the corporation sought to replace over 8,500 old light fixtures in the city. “We will install 10,000 streetlights covering all 25 municipal wards and provide free wi-fi service”, he added.
Panwar said Shimla already had 342 LED streetlights on The Mall from Boileuganj to Chhota Shimla. As 50 additional lights are added in the lower bazaar area today, it will save the city’s 50 per cent electricity bill. The corporation is providing two subsidised solar lights to slum dwellers under the Solar Homes scheme in the city.
Urban Development and Housing Minister Sudhir Sharma said the state had signed an agreement with EESL to install lights in all towns in the state.
Experts said the new lighting system was controlled through a GPRS-based computerised system and a Centrally-sponsored scheme. All urban bodies would pay back funds invested in the streetlight system in seven years, they added.
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