Addressing the inaugural function of Automatic Solar Energy Module Production Plant at Central Electronics Limited (CEL) in Sahibabad, Union Minister of Science and Technology and Earth Sciences, Harsh Vardhan, said that the Centre was working on solar train project in association with Integral Coach Factory (ICF) andIIT Madras and it would roll out soon. He also said that the solar powered carriages will curb dependence on fossil fuels and power grid. The Minsiter further said, solar energy will mitigate global warming by reducing the emission of greenhouse gases. As part of its plan to harness green energy Railways has rolled out a non-AC coach of Rewari-Sitapur passenger train lit by solar panels installed on its roof. It cost about Rs 3.90 lakh for equipping the non-AC coach of Rewari-Sitapur passenger train while the Railways will save Rs 1.24 lakh per year in power cost. The solar panels generate about 17 units of power in a day which enables the lighting system in the coach.
According to a senior Railway official, coaches of Shan-e-Punjab Express and Taj Express are also going to be equipped with solar power shortly. Railways is planning to come out with a solar policy for procuring 1000 MW solar power in the next five years. Railway Board Member (Electrical) Navin Tandon that steps are being taken to install solar plants at railway building rooftops and level crossings across the country. Railway Minister, Suresh Prabhu, has also emphasized on promotion of sustainable development and reducing dependence on fossil fuels. The solar unit will also help the citizens to overcome the electricity crisis.