Smart Meter


The government had aimed to install 25 crore smart meters by 2025 under the Smart Meter National Programme (SMNP). But the recent count shows that only 97 lakh installations till February, 2024.

GS-02 (Government policies and interventions)

What is a Smart Meter?

  • A smart meter serves to record electricity consumption and measure voltage levels, unlike traditional meters that solely measure power usage.
  • Smart meters transmit consumption data every 15 minutes or hourly to utility providers.
  • Connected to the internet, they enable communication with consumers regarding usage details and facilitate utility providers in monitoring for accurate billing purposes.

About Smart Meter National Programme (SMNP)

  • The Smart Meter National Programme (SMNP) is a government initiative aimed at promoting the widespread adoption of smart meters throughout India.
  • Its objective is to enhance billing and collection efficiencies for distribution companies (DISCOMs) nationwide.
  • The SMNP aims to replace 25 crore conventional meters with smart meters, managed by Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL).
    • EESL, a joint venture of four National Public Sector Enterprises—NTPC Limited, PFC, REC, and POWERGRID—operates under the Ministry of Power.
  • It is implemented under the Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) model and EESL bears all capital and operational expenses, with no upfront investment required from states and utilities.
  • The cost recovery is facilitated through energy savings monetization, derived from improved billing accuracy, reduced meter reading costs, and other operational efficiencies. Installation of smart meters follows guidelines set forth by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA).

Benefits of Smart Meters:

  • Consumers can track electricity usage. It enables informed decisions to potentially reduce utility bills .
  • For utilities- smart meters contribute to operational efficiency and assist in managing power demand effectively.
  • Connected via a web-based monitoring system, smart meters aid in minimizing commercial losses for utilities, boosting revenues, and serving as a crucial tool in power sector reforms.