Rahughat Hydropower Project: NEA asks consultant to study damage claims

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    KATHMANDU, JUN 22 –

    RahughatNepal Electricity Authority ( NEA ) has asked Water and Power Consultancy Services—consultant for the 30-MW Rahughat Hydropower Project—to study whether the project’s contractor IVRCL Infrastructure deserves compensation as per its claims.

    India’s IVRCL Infrastructure has been demanding compensation worth Rs 410 million with the NEA stating it could not begin construction of the project due to the delay in providing the project site. It has stopped its work since December last year.

    The NEA had awarded IVRCL the Rs 2.5-billion contract for building a 12-km access route, a 7-km tunnel, powerhouse, dam, and search tank, among others.

    “We cannot fulfill all the demands of the contractor. We will decide on the matter after the consultant endorses the compensation claim,” said Ram Chandra Pandey, general manager of NEA ’s Generation and Construction Division. He said the compensation amount will be determined as per the consultant’s report. As per NEA ’s request, the consultant has asked the Indian firm to furnish details regarding its compensation claim, Pandey said.

    The NEA said although the project was awarded two years ago, the contractor has so far completed only around nine percent of the work.

    According to Pandey, the construction of the project delayed due to the delay in appointing a consultant. The consultant was appointed in 2012.

    NEA has been constructing the project under soft loans from Indian EXIM Bank.

    In the first week of June, the bank had approved three projects—Rahughat Hydropower Project, Koshi Corridor Transmission Line Project and Solu Corridor Transmission Line Project—for its soft loan support worth $155 million. The bank had provided $36 million for the Rahughat project.

    Although the Rahughat Project is a highly-anticipated project, the dispute between the NEA and the contractor has delayed the project.

    Source : The Kathmandu Post