According to reports, Tippanna Tamatgar, a farmer of Uppin Betageri village in the district, was preparing to participate in an agitation called by a farmers’ outfit demanding uninterrupted power supply to their village. But Basappa Tubakatti of Hebballi village was relaxed and wasn’t too bothered about the power supply.
Simply because Basappa, like many others in Hebballi, uses solar power to light up his house. Fed up with having to deal with power outages, people of this village have switched to solar energy.
Hebballi was not clued into the importance of solar power until the the University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad, stepped in. UAS officials installed solar lights and solar cookers after a session of demonstrations and training.
Thanks to their tips and guidance, many villagers, with financial support from the Karnataka Vikas Grameena Bank, have opted for solar lights. Some 30% of 2,500 houses in the village have solar lights, and others are installing them. Hebballi has inspired neighbouring Govankoppa, Uppin Betageri and Kavalgeri, Kogilgere villages to take the solar route.
UAS scientist from the department of family resource management, Suma Hasalkar, told TOI: “We trained villagers on installing solar lights, lamps and cookers after convincing them about the need to use it in these power-starved times.”As a first step, many people have opted for solar lights and they’re likely to use solar cookers. “There are requests from other villages to conduct training sessions,” she added.
Suvarna Choudapur of Hebballi village said: “We’d live in darkness after sunset due to the power shortage. The non-availability of kerosene for lanterns also added to our woes. After the UAS training, we installed two solar lights. Our children are not worried about power shutdown now and they can study late into the night,” she added.