Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated eight newly constructed power plants on Sunday, adding some 1742 megawatts (MW) of electricity to the national grid, reports UNB.
She opened the power generation stations through a videoconference at her official residence Ganobhaban in the city.
The Prime Minister also inaugurated two power grid substations and 100 per cent electrification of 21 upazilas.
The eight power plants are Ghorashal 350MW Combined Cycle Power Plant, Kodda 300MW Power Plant in Gazipur, Daudkandi 200MW Power Plant, Kushiara 163MW combined cycle Power Plant at Fenchuganj, Noapara 100MW Power Plant, Kamolaghat 54MW Power Plant, Simple Cycle (Gas Turbine) of Siddhirganj 335MW Combined Cycle Power Plant and Siddhirganj 225MW combined cycle power plant.
The 21 upazilas where 100 per cent areas have come under the electricity connectivity are Maulvibazar Sadar upazila, Saghata in Gaibandha, Austogram in Kishoreganj, Manohardi in Narsingdi, Cumilla Sadar Dakkhin, Khetlal in Joypurhat, Kalai in Joypurhat, Porsha in Nagaon, Mohanpur and Durgapur in Rajshahi, Atowari in Panchagarh, Kishoreganj in Nilphamari, Fulgazi, Parshuram, Chagalnaiya and Sonagazi in Feni, Patiya and Hathazari in Chattogram, Dakhhin Surma in Sylhet and Habiganj sadar upazila.
The two grid substations include Vulta 400/230KV Grid Substation in Narayanganj and Khagrachhari 132/33KV Grid Substation.
In her inaugural speech, Sheikh Hasina said Bangladesh will import 1500MW of electricity from India to meet the growing demand for power. "We'll import 500 MW first and then go for 1000 MW."
She also mentioned that Bangladesh is in talks with Nepal and Bhutan to import hydropower through constructing hydropower plants there. "This means we're ensuring adequate power so that the people of the country never suffer."
Sheikh Hasina said the government has been working tirelessly in a planned way to ensure a balanced development where each house will get electricity connection by 2021.
She mentioned that socioeconomic development is inevitable after the development of communication and power connection. "Keeping that in mind, we're working to ensure 100 per cent electricity for each person."
She said Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman liberated the country aiming to establish a Bangladesh where each person will live a beautiful life.
The Prime Minister urged all to exercise austerity in using electricity as the government provides this at subsidised price. "We're giving subsidy... you've to exercise austerity," she said.
She asked all to switch off lights, fans, ACs and other electrical appliances while going out of a room in their offices or homes. "If you do so, the electricity bills will be much lower."
During the videoconference, the Prime Minister also exchanged views with the beneficiaries of Kishoreganj, Cumilla, Maulvibazar and Khagrachhari.
PM's Energy Adviser Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury and State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid also spoke on the occasion.
Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Huq and Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry Tajul Islam were, among others, present at the function.
Principal Secretary at the Prime Minister's Office Md Nojibur Rahman conducted the function, while Power Division Secretary Dr Ahmed Kaikaus made a presentation on the country's development in the power sector in the last 10 years.
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