Dr Murhari Sopanrao Kele is a leading industry expert and analyst, with 32 years of experience in power distribution, in both public and private utilities in states such as Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Tripura. He is currently Managing Director at TSECL, where he is responsible for steering growth and excellence.
On the state of the power sector, Kele notes, “Post the pandemic, the power sector has been passing through a major financial crisis. To stop revenue leakages and increase techno-commercial efficiencies, the ACS-ARR gap should be zero. For this, utilities should become smart through automation and digitalisation.”
Kele has brought in various reforms and digital initiatives such as the implementation of input-based power distribution franchises, use of smart metering and standard transfer specification-based prepaid metering, online health monitoring for distribution transformers, and implementation of ERP, smart customer care call centres and “go green” initiatives in consumer services.
On the company’s road map, he says, “Considering the dense forests, hilly geography and stormy climatic conditions in Tripura, TSECL has proposed the use of covered conductors to high tension feeders, underground cables, auto reclosures, sectionalisers and fault passage indicators for reliability improvement, as well as the use of smart metering, high voltage distribution systems and aerial bunched cables for revenue protection. In addition, infrastructure development through an Asian Development Bank-funded project and the first ever 400 kV substation erection work is in progress.”
Kele recalls his most memorable assignment as the time when he was working as Director (Technical) with MPPKVVCL, Indore. He was entrusted with an AMI project and won a Rs 1 billion award from the Ministry of Power for MPPKVVCL for becoming the first discom to achieve 100 per cent household electrification under the Saubhagya scheme.
Kele is an electrical engineer from the Government College of Engineering, Aurangabad with an MBA in marketing from Marathwada University, Aurangabad and a Doctorate from Rashtrasant Tukdoji Maharaj University, Nagpur. Kele is a prolific Marathi and English writer and has authored eight books. He has also attended many national and international conferences and published research papers in various universities including Harvard University.