A story in NYT brought back memories from 30 years ago.Â Currently I am in Germany — and 30 years ago I lived here for about two years.Â I remember being asked more than once whether electricity is common in India.Â I used to be offended.Â Now this story proves that people who asked me that time were more right than I was in feeling offended.Â This story points out that
But this fashionable address of the new India is also a portrait of ambition bumping up against reality, namely an electricity crisis that represents one of the major hurdles to Indiaâ€™s ability to hoist itself into the front ranks of the global economy.
I find it unbelievable that
For all those who suffer from crippling power cuts in cities like this, there are others who have no connection to electricity at all. According to the Planning Commission of India, 600 million people â€” roughly half the population â€” are off the electric grid. For this reason, it is impossible to estimate accurately the total national shortfall.
Very shocking — but really not.Â I still find the numbers difficult to believe.Â But it is clear that the infra-structure situation in India is really bad and something needs to be done to continue with the progress.
According to http://www.worldenergyoutlook.org/Electricity.pdf, in 2005 the average access rate to electricity in East Asia was 89%. China: mainland: 99.4% (people without electricity: 8.5 million), Taiwan: 99.2%.
The same report put the 2005 figure of India at 55%, with 487 million people without electricity. Pakistan at 54%. The overall average for South Asia was 52%.