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Global Solar Technology

Vikram Solar invests Rs. 100 crore in module manufacturing plant in West Bengal
Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, Chief Minister of West Bengal has inaugurated ing the solar PV module manufacturing plant of
Vikram Group of Industries at Falta, Special Economic Zone in the eastern State of West Bengal today.

Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, Hon'ble Chief Minister of West Bengal, is inaugurating the Solar Photovoltaic Module
Manufacturing Plant of Vikram Group of Industries at Falta, Special Economic Zone in the eastern State of West Bengal
today, in the presence of Debesh Das, Minister of Information and Technology and Shri S P Gon Choudhuri, Managing
Director, West Bengal Green Energy Development Corporation Ltd.

Says Mr. H K Chaudhary, Chairman, Vikram Group of Industries, "Vikram Solar Private Limited has invested around Rs.
100 crores (US$22.5 million) in this project, with an initial capacity of 25MW p.a. We are already in the process of
expanding its capacity to 50MW by the middle of this year."

Furthermore, Vikram Solar Private Limited has promoted a subsidiary in the name of Vikram Solar GmbH in Germany for
the latest technological up gradation and to establish a Brand for Vikram Solar in the European Markets. Vikram Solar
has become the first Indian Company to set a 1.05 MW Grid Interactive Solar power plant at Kottenheim, Germany.

Regarding future plans, the company has plans for backward integration in the form of Wafer and Photovoltaic cell
manufacturing, within a short period, with a total capital outlay of Rs. 500 crores. Vikram Solar has already provided
employment to more than 100 persons by now, and once the full expansion is implemented, will be able to provide
employment to more than 800 persons directly and indirectly with a focus on skill development and training in the High
Technology Solar Industry.

McKinsey & Company, in its survey ended May '09, stated that India has one of the world's highest solar intensities with
an annual solar energy yield of 1,700 to 1,900 kilowatt hours per kilowatt peak (kWh/KWp) of the installed capacity. This
is similar to the US and Hawaii, the other two countries which have been ranked first along with India.

Mr. Chaudhary states that thus, India has a number of advantages over other countries when it comes to suitable
conditions for solar power generation - dense population and high solar insulation. "With about 300 clear sunny days in a
year, India's theoretical solar power reception, just on its land area, is about 5000 trillion kilowatt per year. This is far
more than current total energy consumption. Even assuming 14% conversion efficiency for PV modules, it will still be
thousands of times greater than the likely electricity demand in India by the year 2015."

However, the solar power produced in India is merely 0.4% compared to other energy resources. To encourage a thriving
solar market, the technology needs to be competitively cheaper- i.e. attaining cost parity with fossil or nuclear energy.
India is heavily dependent on coal and foreign oil, which pollute the environment and until solar energy, which is most
climate responsible, becomes viable, the phenomenon is likely to continue. Regrettably, India's grid system is
considerably under developed with major sections of its population still surviving off grid. That could allow bypassing long
distance centralized power delivery systems and yet bring cheaper electricity to the masses. Moreover, cost of solar
power has come down significantly in the last few years.

To deliver Solar power to non-grid areas, Vikram Solar has initiated an R & D project in collaboration with Bengal
Engineering and Science University (BESU) for applied research in the field of long life Solar Battery Systems to sustain
a life cycle of 15-20 years. Currently the available Lead-Acid Batteries have a life of 3-5 years. This initiative has been
taken up under the MNRE research proposals for the development and demonstration of electricity storage systems.

The wide use of solar energy in our country could help in providing clean, cheap and efficient source of electricity for
large population of our country. Concludes Mr. Chaudhary, "Solar energy has huge potential to support the future
population of our country."

Moreover, with the launch of Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission the Govt. of India and State Governments have
taken the initiative to promote ecologically sustainable growth, while simultaneously addressing India's energy security

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Global Solar Technology

challenge. The establishment of this solar plant is expected to provide the masses green, clean and efficient energy,
thereby making solar industry the backbone of Indian economy in the near future.

Also present at the inauguration was Arun Bit, Development Commissioner, Falta, Sri Khalil Ahmed, DM, South 24
Parganas and Chandana Ghosh Dastidar, MLA Falta and many other dignitaries and Industrialists.

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