GORKHA, MAR 14 –
A high-level technical committee has arrived at the Budhi Gandaki Hydropower Project site to carry out a study on its environmental and social impact. The 16-member team led by project chief Lila Nath Bhattarai will complete all preparatory works to begin the project construction.
The team will also conduct a technical study of the project site and hold discussions with the stakeholders in two districts Dhading and Gorkha, where the project will be developed.
Having held discussions with the stakeholders in Gorkha on Monday, the team completed the site visit on Tuesday and held discussions with the stakeholders in Dhading on Wednesday.
Bhattarai said that his team along with representatives from France’s Tractwell Engineering had begun the study on social and environmental impact from February 1. “The team has been deployed so as to access the project’s challenges, preparation of resettlement and to learn the view of the locals in the project-affected area,” he said. The project is expected to displace around 10,000 people.
According to him, the team will also conduct a feasibility study, detailed engineering design, model of resettlement and tender document, among others over the period of 30 months. The works at the site has been accelerated lately as the project has been recognised as a national pride project.
Although a feasibility study was completed in 1984, the project has failed to attract interests of potential foreign donors and private power developers.
The project is one of the most desirable hydropower projects with high potential and proximity to the Capital. The reservoir of the Budhi Gandaki will have an area of 50 sq km. The government aims to complete the project by 2020.
Source : The Kathmandu Post