India's PM promises electricity in every house within 5 years

New Delhi, August 15, 2012 — Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said every household in India will have access to power within 5 years, according to newspapers.

Singh also promised improved electric reliability in India, which recently experienced one of the worst series of blackouts in history across its northern region.

Singh said that while almost every village was electrified, his administration would supply electricity to every residence in 5 years. Singh, who leads the United Progressive Alliance, already launched an electrification plan that brought power to about 100,000 villages and towns.

India's 12th Five-Year Plan also calls for some $1 trillion of investment in infrastructure from 2012 to 2017. Singh added that public-private partnerships should be used to help strengthen India's power infrastructure. Improving the power grid, he said, was crucial for economic growth, industrial output and job creation.

The country's recent blackouts are blamed on a cascading failure that caused three major transmission grids to fail, leaving more than 600 million people in the dark.

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