The governing body of Pancheshwar Development Authority (PDA), the developer of 4,800 megawatts Nepal-India Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project, is holding its fourth meeting in the western Nepali city of Pokhara in the first week of July.
The meeting will discuss ways to extend more legal authority to the executive body of the PDA so that it could arrange funds, when needed, to build the project. The meeting is also expected to endorse the employee recruitment guideline, so that the PDA could hire management staff.
These issues will be finalised during the PDA governing body meeting scheduled for July 4 and 5, PDA CEO Mahendra Gurung told The Himalayan Times. The governing body meeting will be headed by Nepal’s Energy Secretary Suman Prasad Sharma and Secretary at the Indian Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation (MoWRRDGR), Shashi Shekhar.
The governing body’s meeting will be preceded by joint secretary-level joint committee meeting scheduled for July 1 and 2. The joint committee meeting will be headed by Nepal’s Energy Joint Secretary Madhav Prasad Gadtaula and India’s Additional Secretary at the MoWRRDGR, UP Singh.
“The joint committee meeting discusses most of the issues pertaining to PDA and forwards them to the governing body for approval,” said Gurung.
During the previous governing body and joint committee meetings of PDA held here in March, WAPCOS Ltd, an Indian state-owned company hired to prepare the detailed project report (DPR) of Pancheshwar project, had submitted the final draft of the DPR.
As per the draft DPR, Pancheshwar along with Rupaligad projects, being built jointly by Nepal and India on the Mahakali River in far-western part of the country, have the capacity to generate around 12 billion units of electricity per year.
Copies of the draft DPR have been forwarded to both Nepal and Indian governments for approval. “But since both the governments are still sending their feedbacks, the DPR won’t be approved by the upcoming meeting of the governing body,” Gurung said.
But unless the DPR is approved, a lot of pre-construction works like building feeder and access roads will not begin, which will delay project implementation.
“We are aware of that. But in the meantime, we’ll be hiring management staff. The process of recruiting 63 management staff, including 32 of officer level, will be initiated in August. Also, we will be moving our base from Kathmandu to Mahendranagar. We hope to do that within July,” said Gurung.
Pancheshwar project, including Rupaligad, is being built at a cost of around Rs 480 billion. It is a storage-type project with a reservoir that will stretch 65 km upstream from the Pancheshwar dam site.
Source : The Himalayan Times.