India is introducing technology aimed at identifying how more than 20 per cent of power distributed by state retailers is going missing.

Rural Electrification Corp. plans to install equipment that will transmit usage data from meters at each of the country’s 100,000 rural feeder stations, one of the final power distribution points between power plants and customers, said Ritu Maheshwari, the federal company’s executive director.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Data from the meters, which will be installed by state retail companies, will be streamed live to the public, Maheshwari said.

“Our aim is to make sure we know exactly how much electricity is flowing through the rural feeders,” Maheshwari said. “It helps spotting and solving problems faster. It also helps in understanding the trend in rural power consumption.”

Tracking rural usage is part of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of reforming the country’s power sector and lighting every home in the country by 2019. 

Regional distributors lose almost 23 per cent of the electricity they buy through theft, unmetered usage and dissipation through old wires, hurting their finances and preventing them from repaying debt.

A federal-government plan to make them profitable has set a target of bringing that down to 15 per cent by 2019.

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