1,117 families get electricity as Jhakadigadh project completes

BAJURA, April 15: There is light in Wards 8, 9 and 10 of Budhiganga Municipality now, as electricity production has commenced from the Jhakadigadh River in far-western Bajura district. Locals have been overjoyed as their houses and neighborhoods have been brightened on Nepali New Year 2075.

The 100 KW Jhakadigadh micro-hydro power plant has lit houses of more than 1,117 families, according to Dharma Raj Jaishi, mayor of Budhiganga Municipality.

Most of the houses of the municipality have been connected to the power grid and the remaining ones will be connected by mid-May, according to Jhakadigadh’s project chief, Ram Bahadur Baniya.

Locals, who were previously using solar and other sources of energy, are happy with the installation of hydro power at their houses, according to Budhiganga Municipality Ward 9 Chairperson, Bharat Thapa.  The Alternative Energy Development Board had provided Rs 20.55 million in grant to construct this project. Likewise, the special infrastructural development fund of then parliamentarian Karna Bahadur Thapa had provided Rs 5.7 million, and an additional Rs 3.2 million came from then District Development Committee, Bajura. The total investment for the project so far has been Rs 34.7 million.

According to Baniya, the total cost of the project is Rs 50 million. “More than Rs 10 million remains to be paid for project construction. These funds have not yet been managed till now. A bulk of the work here has been done on loan that needs to be paid. Moreover, locals had donated 25 days of labor so that the project could come into operation.”

Baniya added: “I have been seeking funds to repay the debt which seems to be a great issue at this point. However, I am glad that I could bestow upon the dreams of Budhiganga Municipality locals of seeing their town lit.”

According to Baniya, the project will be providing electricity at rates less than that set by Nepal Electricity Authority. He further aims to generate 400 KW of electricity from different sections of the river to give access to electricity to the residents of all 10 municipalities of the district.

Source : Republica