Four Ps to power energy access
While digital divide has become a common topic, discourse on universal energy access is still limited to practitioners and policy-makers, besides those who are at the receiving end. Unfortunately, access to clean energy-or the lack of it-has wide-ranging ramifications-from health to quality of life to education to lost opportunities for livelihood enhancements. India has made strides insofar as rural electrification and clean cooking energy is concerned, through programmes like Ujjwala, Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana and Saubhagya. While infrastructure has been created and connections provided, in reality a sizeable population continues to rely on traditional sources for meeting its lighting and cooking needs. The reasons range from reliability of supply to affordability of electricity/LPG. That in most of the cases these are not easy to reach locations adds another layer of complexity.