Beginning January 26, 2018, Elephanta island will get electric power supply after waiting for several years.
“All hurdles have been cleared now,” informed energy minister Chandrashekhar Bawankule .Sources said more than 1,000 villagers and shopkeepers will get electricity which in turn will help enhance tourism on the island.
Although Elephanta is very close to Mumbai, it had not been electrified for many years. As it was an uphill task supplying power to the island, both the government and power companies were little interested in doing the needful. After the BJP government came to power in the state, Mr Bawankule declared that Elephanta would soon get electricity.
The work was supposed to be completed by August 15, 2017, but due to issues related to forests etc., it got delayed.
Mr Bawankule said, “The forest department’s permission is required to install cables through the mangroves. So, that issue has been resolved now and the permission will be given in eight days. So, we can meet the January 26 deadline.”
To electrify Elephanta island, four cables of seven km each have been installed. Cabling of 28km under the sea was a difficult task. Electrification of two villages has been completed while that of the remaining single village will be completed after the forest department’s approval. We will supply power from Mahavitaran’s Nhava-Sheva power sub-station, senior officials of Mahavitaran said.
Elephanta island is a sought after tourist destination. Power supply will help enhance tourism on the island. Currently, shopkeepers and others use generator sets and power is expensive. To add to that, supply gets affected due to technical difficulties many a times. Officials said that this Republic Day onward, the island will get uninterrupted power supply.