India is set to introduce strict timelines for the construction of rooftop solar projects, in a move aimed at accelerating the country's transition to solar energy. The announcement was made by Union Minister for Power, New and Renewable Energy RK Singh following a review meeting with state power ministers and secretaries. Despite several government initiatives, India has fallen short of its rooftop solar installation targets in recent years. According to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy’s (MNRE) Annual Report 2022-23, in 2022-23, the residential sector fell short of its 4 GW target for rooftop solar installations, with only 1.66 GW completed. The extension of Phase II of the Rooftop Solar Programme until March 2026 provides an opportunity to address this challenge, and the introduction of strict timelines is a step in the right direction.
The Indian government's announcement of a new integrated rating system and fixed timelines for rooftop solar projects is a significant step forward. The adoption of measures to optimize technical assessment and commissioning procedures demonstrates a commitment to overcoming challenges and boosting rooftop solar system integration. The implementation of star ratings for solar modules and an integrated vendor rating system reflects a comprehensive approach to empowering consumers to make informed choices. Setting benchmark prices ensures transparency and fairness in the solar sector by ensuring that the number of planned installations is close to the number of installations that are completed. The government's plan to expand the pool of integrators and improve accessibility will make rooftop solar more accessible and give consumers more choices.