Himachal hydropower projects shut, north India hit

August 2nd, 2012 - 9:15 pm ICT by IANS  

Shimla, Aug 2 (IANS) Hydropower plants in Himachal Pradesh remained shut Thursday due to high silt level in the Sutlej river, triggering a power crisis in northern states.

The country’s biggest hydropower plant, the 1,500 MW Nathpa Jhakri power project, and Jaypee Karcham Hydro Corp Ltd’s 1,000 MW Karcham Wangtoo Hydroelectric Project - both located in Kinnaur district - were closed, project officials said here.

The silt level in the river, on which the Nathpa Jhakri power project is located, was more than the permissible limit, a Sutlej Jal Vidyut Nigam Ltd (SJVNL) official told IANS.

He said the silt level, which rose more than 6,000 ppm (parts per million) Wednesday due to incessant rainfall, came down to 5,000 ppm Thursday. “Still generation is not possible as high silt can damage the plant,” he added.

S.K. Uppal, project general manager of Jaypee Group, said only one turbine of 250 MW has been working. Other three turbines have been shut.

But the company’s 300 MW Baspa Hydropower project, located upstream of the Karcham Wangtoo Hydroelectric Project, is working normally.

The SJVNL, a joint venture between the centre and state government, daily generates about 38 million units, and supplies power to Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand.

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