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Shavasana, Shampoo, Shehad, Solar: Baba Ramdev’s Desi Drive Enters Renewable Industry

Patanjali plans to invest around Rs 100 crore in solar equipment manufacturing and its factory in Greater Noida is expected to be fully operational within the next couple of months

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Yoga guru Baba Ramdev-backed Patanjali Ayurved, the manufacturer of herbal products and consumer goods, is exploring to enter renewable sector with solar equipment manufacturing.

“Getting into solar is in line with the swadeshi movement. With solar, each household in India can have power supply, and we are here to make that happen,” Acharya Balkrishna, managing director of Patanjali Ayurved, said in an interview to one of the leading media houses.

The company acquired Advance Navigation and Solar Technologies, a manufacturer of navigation aid equipment, earlier this year. Currently, the facility has a manufacturing capacity of 120 megawatts. Balkrishna elaborated how the company started use of solar energy for captive use to soon realize the over-dependence of the country on cheap Chinese modules with lack of quality consistency in the market.

Patanjali plans to invest around Rs 100 crore in solar equipment manufacturing and its factory in Greater Noida is expected to be fully operational within the next couple of months, according to the media house.

“The government has been working on the solar industry, and even offering sops. We will manufacture solar panels in India without compromising the quality. But we are not going to get into the price war with the Chinese solar panels,” Balkrishna added.

Patanjali’s entry into solar manufacturing comes at a time when 80 per cent of the solar modules, the primary part of solar panels, come from China. Solar modules or panels account for nearly 60 per cent of a solar power project’s cost. The domestic manufacturers find it hard to compete with the cheap modules flooded in the market, backed up by limited government support.

Recently, China-based Trina Solar, the world’s biggest solar panel maker, has put on hold its make-in-India plan to set up a 1,000 megawatt manufacturing unit in the country because of low prices and absence of supportive policies but it will invest up to $500 million if it gets the right incentives.

Related Article: Is It Time We Have Larger Debate On Solar ‘Make in India’?

However, the proposal to award 100 GW of solar and wind contracts by March 2020, which includes plan to invite bids for setting up 20GW solar power capacity, would spur the domestic manufacturing of solar power equipment.

As per media reports, Baba Ramdev and his associate Balkrishna were working on a unique form of renewable energy: bull power. A detailed research, conducted over a period of one and a half years, on the idea of generating electricity utilising a bull’s pulling power yielded initial success. The aim is to prevent the animals from being sent to slaughter-houses.