Electricity Connected us with the World
Electricity is one of the most important blessings that science has given to mankind around the world. It has also become part of daily needs as it is quite difficult to imagine life without it. Electricity has many uses in our daily life. We can use it for lighting our rooms, working fans, running televisions and radios, charging mobile phones, etc. All these technologies provide great comfort and ease to people. Taking certain advantages into account, the Citizens’ Charter National Priority Program of the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (MRRD/CCNPP) has considered the provision of energy to rural communities across Afghanistan into its overarching plans. Haji Haq Nazar Village, Dasht-e-Qala district of Takhar province is one of the communities that has recently been provided with solar energy. Around 198 families in this community enjoy use of electricity in their daily life.
Said Hamdullah, a member of Community Development Council (CDC): “The villagers used to live in dark during the night in the past. We were using batteries, candles, roaring fires, gas lamps and kerosene lamps to light our houses. The batteries could provide power for only two hours, particularly in summer season. Considering lack of electricity, we could not use smart mobile phones to get connected with rest of the world through social media. Our streets were dark and there was the fear of robbery during the night. Our children would usually go to bed after 8:00 PM because they could not study due to lack of light.”
“The completion of the solar power project through the Citizens’ Charter has helped our village shops remain open until 7:30 PM. Now, the people can easily walk back and forth until late in the night. There is a light bulb in every room of our houses. We watch televisions and make use of galaxy mobiles phones so as to get connected with the world. For the sake of comfort, there is a fan in each room in the summer season. We have hired two people; an electrician and a guard whose jobs are to look after the solar panels and repair the electric boards, electrical cables, utility poles, sockets, etc. We collect AFN 500 from each family per month as the electricity bill. After we have collected the electricity bills, we pay the salaries of two employees from these funds, whereas the remaining money is being saved for the operations and maintenance purposes of the project. Now, our children can eagerly study even until 12:00 AM in the night and their capacity is being enhanced day after day,” added Hamdullah.
The solar power project worth AFN 8.7 million funded by the Citizens’ Charter including 10% community contribution (cash, labor or in-kind) is capable of generating 23KW energy.