Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) South Asia, REC Limited (a public infrastructure finance company under the Ministry of Power, Government of India), and Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) partnered to organize a workshop on “Future of Smart Metering in India”. This workshop brought together distinguished academics, representatives from industry, state governments, and power distribution companies to discuss the advancement of smart metering in India along with learnings and the challenges faced in its effective implementation. The workshop served as a platform for different stakeholders to facilitate informed discussion and knowledge sharing among participants. Discussions in the workshop were met with the enthusiastic participation of the stakeholders which contributed to the event’s success.
Mr. Kunal Sharma, Director of Policy, Training, and Communication at J-PAL SA inaugurated the event through his welcome address followed by the address of Mr. Lakshmanan, Executive Director, REC Limited, to set the context and purpose of the workshop. Mr. Sanjeev Hans, Principal Secretary, Department of Energy, Government of Bihar, along with Mr. M Devaraj, Chairman-cum-Managing Director, UPPCL, Government of Uttar Pradesh, presented the experiences of implementation of smart meters in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh– detailing the benefits of smart metering, acceptability among consumers, setting up of IT infrastructure, system integration, cyber security, supply chain issues in procurement of smart meters, management and training of staff. Following discom presentations, Dr. Anant Sudarshan presented the role of experimental research to help measure and improve the effectiveness of smart meter implementation and share experiences from the Haryana smart metering evaluation. A panel discussion with Mr. Lakshmanan, Mr. Anil Rawal (CEO, IntelliSmart Infrastructure Private Limited), Mr. Shiv Tayal (Managing Director, Jammu Power Distribution Company Limited), and Mr. Sitaram Bamanke (Chief Engineer, MPPKVVCL), moderated by Dr. Anant Sudarshan involved discussions on challenges faced in smart meter installation, cyber security, pre-paid vs post-paid smart meters, supply chain issues in procurement of smart meters, and regulatory changes to facilitate smart metering.
The event was concluded with a special address from Mr. Vivek Kumar Dewangan (Chairman and Managing Director, REC Limited), reiterating the vision of the RDSS scheme and providing words of encouragement to the discom participants and a vote of thanks by Ms. Shruti Bhimsaria from EPIC India.