Indian government data from 2005 shows that almost 90% of households in the state of Bihar are not connected to the conventional grid. Bihar is also the state with the greatest number of people below the poverty line; people who spend a large portion of their income on kerosene and diesel generators.
In its last REEEP-funded project, SELCO India began replicating its successful solar lighting model in the Munger district of Bihar in partnership with SEWA Bharat, a local organisation working with rural women.
Under that project, SELCO is installing 400 home systems financed by Bihar Kshetriya Gramin Bank (BKGB) via some 40 women’s self-help groups.
This project will now incubate the resulting partnership into an actual cooperative that takes up the energy services business systematically, with a long-term plan for servicing the local communities.