Daily Hot Topic
Topic : Tapping India’s Rooftop Solar Potential
GS-3 Mains  : Economy
Revision Notes



  • India’s rooftop solar (RTS) capacity witnessed its highest annual growth in 2023-2024, reaching 2.99 GW.


  • In 2015, India set a target of 100 GW solar power by 2022, including a 40 GW RTS component.
  • By December 2022, India’s installed RTS capacity was only 7.5 GW, prompting an extension of the 40 GW target to 2026.
  • As of March 2024, India’s total installed RTS capacity is 11.87 GW, with an overall potential of approximately 796 GW.

History of RTS Programme in India

  • Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM): The first major initiative to promote solar energy, aiming to produce 20 GW (including RTS) in three phases (2010-2022).
  • Recent initiatives like SUPRABHA, SRISTI, financial incentives, and awareness campaigns have improved RTS installations.
  • Pradhan Mantri Surya Ghar Yojana: A flagship program to install rooftop systems in 1 crore households, offering free electricity.

Achievements of Various States

  • Gujarat: Leading state with 3,456 MW installed RTS capacity, high awareness, and Modhera (India’s 1st solar-powered village).
  • Maharashtra: A top performer with 2,072 MW due to robust solar policies and a conducive regulatory environment.
  • Rajasthan: Installed capacity of 1,154 MW despite being the largest state by area.
  • Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka: Reasonable performance with capacities of 675 MW, 599 MW, and 594 MW respectively.
  • Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and Jharkhand: Underperforming states due to bureaucratic hurdles, poor infrastructure, and lack of awareness.

Ensuring Further Growth of RTS

  • Grassroots awareness campaigns by distribution companies and local bodies.
  • Making RTS economically viable:
    • Government subsidies to lower costs.
    • Multiple low-cost financing options.
  • Promoting R&D in solar technology, energy storage, and smart grids for cost reduction and performance improvement.
  • Investing in training programs (like Suryamitra) to create a skilled workforce (over 51,000 technicians trained by Dec 2022).
  • Reviewing and updating RTS policies for successful implementation of ‘Muft Bijli Yojana’:
    • Net-metering regulations.
    • Grid-integration standards.
    • Building codes.
    • Fast-tracking virtual net-metering and group net-metering options for limited roof space.


  • Rooftop solar has the potential to revolutionize India’s energy sector, offering a sustainable, decentralized, and affordable solution to meet growing electricity needs and promote consumer self-reliance.
  • To achieve the ambitious target of 500 GW renewable energy capacity (including 280 GW solar) by 2030 and net-zero by 2070, India’s RTS needs to reach 100 GW by 2030.


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