The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the setting up of 5,000 MW of grid-connected solar power projects entailing an investment of Rs 5,050 crore. Just a fortnight back, the Central government had increased the allocation from Rs 600 crore to Rs 5,000 crore to support installation of rooftop solar power systems to generate 4,200 MW over five years.

The grid-connected solar power projects will generate 1,250 MW each year over four financial years ending 2018-19 and will be implemented on build, own and operate basis, according to an official statement issued on Wednesday. The bidders will be selected through open bidding process and will have to provide solar power at a pre-determined tariff of Rs 4.93 per kWh in the first year.

The projects will be implemented by solar power developers with viability gap funding under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM).

The JNNSM envisages generation of up to 100,000 MW of grid connected solar power by 2022 at a total investment of about Rs 30,000 crore.

The rooftop project is aimed at installation of 4,200 MW solar rooftops systems on school buildings, hospitals, government institutions, commercial enterprises and homes over the next five years up to 2019-20.

At the Union Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, amendments to the power tariff policy were also approved. "The amendments are also aimed at achieving the objectives of Ujwal DISCOM Assurance Yojana (UDAY)," an official statement said.