Rahughat Hydro Project Milestone: Longest Tunnel Link Achieves Breakthrough

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Feb. 23: The tunnel connecting the second and third adit, which is considered to be the longest in the 40 MW Rahughat hydropower project, has seen a breakthrough.

With the breakthrough of the adit connecting the tunnel on Wednesday evening, construction of 5,917 metres of tunnel has been completed in the project so far.

A total of 6,270 meters of tunnel should be constructed in the Rahughat hydropower project which is under construction in Raghuganga Rural Municiplaity of Myagdi district.

The tunnel was connected in the presence of chairman of Raghuganga Rural Municipality Bhaba Bahadur Bhandari, people representatives and representatives from projects, construction companies and consultants.

Managing Director of Raghuganga Hydropower Company Ganesh KC said that with the completion of the 3,836-metre-long tunnel connecting the second and third adits, 353 metres tunnels are yet to be dug in the project.

According to him, about 1,939 metres long tunnel has been dug from the second adit in Adherikhola of Raghuganga Rural Municipality and 1,897 metres long tunnel from the third adit of Piple.

Project manager Raj Bista said that this section was the longest among the tunnels to be built in the project.

“The adit of number 2 and 3 of the tunnel is connected. It was a challenge for us to connect this part. We have planned to connect all the tunnels by mid-May 2024,” he said.

The project has also started the work of concrete lining in the completed tunnel, placing penstock and turbine in the powerhouse.

According to the project, the construction of a 61-metre-deep search shaft has been completed in Piple.

The 329-metre bottom pressure shaft tunnel connecting with the vertical pressure shaft from the power plant construction site was already connected.

Project Manager Bista said that 28 metres of the 128-metre-long tailrace that will mix the water coming out of the power plant into Kaligandaki has been completed.

According to KC, construction work has been accelerated with an action plan to start power generation from March 2025.

According to him, civil contractor Jaiprakash Associates has proceeded with the construction of dam, tunnel and power plant simultaneously.

The Rahughat hydropower project, which is a subsidised loan investment of the Export-Import Bank of India, is estimated to cost Rs. 8.6 billion, excluding interest during the construction period.

Nepal Electricity Authority started the civil engineering work of Rahughat from 2008.

According to the terms of the loan, a contract was signed with the Indian company IVRCL Infrastructure Projects India Limited in October 2010 to complete the construction in two years. But after the contractor failed to work, the Authority broke the contract in 2013.

After repealing the contract with IVRCL, Raghuganga Hydropower Limited changed the design and model of Rahughat Hydro and increased the capacity from 32 to 40 MW.

According to the project, the physical progress of the project is 71 per cent and the financial progress 55 per cent.

 

Source: Rising Nepal