RR Kabel Requests Industry to Adhere Quality Standards, Says Will Increase Esteem of the Industry - Wire & Cable India
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RR Kabel Requests Industry to Adhere Quality Standards, Says Will Increase Esteem of the Industry

RR Kabel, an electrical conglomerate with fire safety as its priority, suggests Indian companies cease producing non-standard products and offer only ISI-marked products to increase their shelf life and garner high regard for the industry from society. Mr. Shreegopal Kabra, Managing Director of RR Kabel, revealed this during his interaction with Wire & Cable India magazine.

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Mr. Shreegopal Kabra, Managing Director, RR Kabel Limited

Wire & Cable India: You have a penchant for making quality products and encouraging others to follow suit. Please elaborate.

Shreegopal Kabra: The Government of India has introduced a new rule, which makes it mandatory for cable manufacturers to produce solar cables in accordance with the Bureau of Indian Standards and marked with IS 17293. This ensures the longevity and safety of PV solar projects in India. Both the government and the private sector are heavily investing in solar projects, and it would be meaningless to have price-oriented quality benchmarks for solar cables, which form a vital link for such projects. I want to appeal to all manufacturers, consultants, and contractors not to produce products below BIS standards. I have personally seen and tested samples from a few companies where the cable armor percentage is much below the BIS standard requirements. There are wires and cables on the market shelves with 5 to 20 percent less copper than the BIS standard requirements, compromising product standards heavily. As cable manufacturers, it is our duty to educate people and ensure that we do not sell anything like flexible wires for use in solar panels. Due to such practices, the country suffers losses. It is our prime responsibility to ensure that we do not compromise on the product standards.

Watch: RR Kabel | Solar Cables | Solar Plant | Renewable Energy

WCI: RR Kabel has been known for always putting fire safety on its priority list. Please elaborate.

SK: RR Kabel is the first wire manufacturing company to introduce low-smoke, zero-halogen (LSZH) wires for the domestic market in India. Fire safety is an issue dear to our company, as various post-event analyses have shown that far more casualties are caused by asphyxiation due to inhalation of hazardous carbon monoxide than due to fire burns. The gaseous phenomenon finds a catalyst in PVC wire coatings, which emit dense and dark smoke when burning, effectively making timely escape impossible and aiding panic. We all should appeal to the industry stakeholders to manufacture and sell the maximum quantity of low-smoke zero-halogen wires, which are smoke-free and address safety concerns as well. At RR Kabel, LSZH was an innovation borne out of necessity. They not only emit less smoke and odor compared to other wires but also ensure maximum visibility compared to wires with any other insulation material. Hence, aiding the rescue and evacuation process in case of fire. The latest Central Electricity Authority (CEA) 2023 regulations made it mandatory to use such low-smoke, zero-halogen wires in all public buildings, irrespective of height, further bolstering our efforts towards electrical fire safety.

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In the past, most of the companies in the market were selling cables, labeling them as fire alarm or fire survival cables, when actually they were armored cables. Such cables, when offered with aluminum conductors and various PVC insulation, become a major component adding fuel to the fire menace. In India, where fire-related accidents claim the highest number of lives after road accidents, the usage of such non-standard fire alarm or fire survival cables can have adverse consequences for all stakeholders, including consumers, contractors, and dealers. I think the recent Quality Control Order (QCO) by the Ministry of Commerce, making IS 17505-1 marked Fire Survival Cable mandatory in India, is a great step in times when India is experiencing unprecedented infrastructural development.
It shall definitely eliminate the sale and usage of such non-standard cables with misleading labels for all critical applications. Since our first product innovation towards fire safety, RR Kabel has not only dedicated efforts to making the product better, but we have also aimed for public awareness. We often collaborate with reputed and recognized R&D agencies, NGOs, and professionals to serve our purpose. We conduct seminars, conferences, social drives, and campaigns, among others, to ensure awareness among the public about the wires and cables products they must be buying. In fact, our marketing strategy also addresses the issues across the nation.

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WCI: Please share your views on the industry. How can Indian companies compete with their global counterparts?

SK: We all know that India is a developing country. People are investing heavily in the residential and commercial sectors. The prices of properties have significantly risen, while the cost of electrical products, including wire and cable, remains relatively low. Being part of the wire and cable industry, I request everyone to treat this business as one built on trust and safety. We should adhere to global standards. Let’s work together and pledge that nobody will compromise on quality. Sometimes, people attempt to find a middle ground due to high prices by compromising on the quality of copper used. Some even resort to making cables from scrap materials, compromising on insulation, armoring, and other vital aspects.

This results in tough competition. In my opinion, given the presence of multiple businesses, there will always be competition and price wars, especially when there is a compromise on quality. However, I believe we can establish a reputable brand and earn respect from society by consistently delivering quality products.

Also Read: KEC International Capitalizing on Opportunities, New Aluminium Conductor Plant in Gujarat

WCI: Please tell us about your R&D division.

SK: Innovation and technology form an integral part of our business operations. RR Kabel implements an inclusive research and innovation ecosystem with separate and dedicated R&D facilities at each of our units located in Silvassa and Waghodia. These facilities are approved by DSIR (Dept. of Scientific and Industrial Research, Ministry of Science & Technology). Our R&D centers are well-equipped with the latest technologies to assess mechanical, electrical, thermal, chemical, and signal characteristics of cables. We have a team of highly skilled professionals helping us constantly emerge with new products focusing on quality, safety, and affordability. We have a strong focus on quality, and our central quality and test laboratory for wires and cables in our facility at Vadodara, Gujarat, is accredited by NABL (National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories) as per ISO/IEC 17025. It is capable of performing over 700 tests on our products.

WCI: Please share RR Kabel’s efforts toward sustainability in the production process. What are your plans for the future?

SK: RR Kabel’s entire business model embraces sustainability. We have a model based on environmental security, wherein we strive to ensure that our power is sourced from renewable sources. Since October 1, 2023, 80 percent of the power at our Vadodara facility has become green. RR Kabel embarked on an ESG journey with a phased and structured approach, progressing in areas that matter to all our stakeholders. Technological advancements in our production process have enhanced our operational efficiency, reduced waste, and helped us gain visibility across the supply chain. The cables designed and manufactured by RR Kabel undergo in-depth, rigorous testing, ensuring reliability throughout their lifecycle.

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RR Kabel is a global player, and all our products in active markets conform to applicable regulations. The trust in our products is bolstered by our certifications; RR Kabel is an ISO 9001, ISO 14001, and ISO 45001 certified company. In addition to reputable ISO certifications, our wires and cables products are also certified by BASEC (UK), UL (USA), CSA (Canada), VDE (Germany), TUV Rhineland (Germany), and more. We ensure compliance with the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) and the Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) for our entire basket of wires and cables, adhering to global standards of quality and safety. These compliances provide a high degree of human and environmental safety, reflecting RR Kabel’s commitment to striving for quality for our customers.

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