Himachal dam project to provide water to Delhi next year

September 4th, 2008 - 3:28 pm ICT by IANS  

Shimla, Sep 4 (IANS) There is promise of water for Delhi from a thermal power project being commissioned in Himachal Pradesh next year.The Rs.22.13 billion (Rs. 2,213 crore) 40 MW Renuka Dam Power Project is to be constructed on the Yamuna river in Sirmaur district of Himachal Pradesh.

Himachal Pradesh Power Corp Ltd Managing Director Tarun Kapoor said the state government has started pre-construction activities at the dam site. “Various surveys, including topographical, geological and geophysical, that are mandatory before starting the construction are in progress. These are likely to be completed by end of this year”.

He said the government plans to acquire 627 hectares of land. “The case for the diversion of 642 hectares of forest land for the construction of dam is under progress. For acquisition of private land, the government has set up committees that will negotiate with villagers whose land is going to be acquired,” Kapoor told IANS.

Local legislator Prem Singh said the affected families should be taken into confidence before acquiring the land.”The affected villagers are not against the construction of the dam, they are just demanding a proper rehabilitation plan. If they are not suitably compensated, they can move the court”.

Under the relief and rehabilitation plan, every affected family would get 100 units of electricity free-of-cost for 10 years, starting from the date of commission of the project, and a job in the project.

Sirmaur’s Deputy Commissioner Pushpinder Rajput said a survey had been started to ascertain the area that would be submerged in the dam waters. “The process to identify the land where the affected villagers will be rehabilitated is also going on”.

The Delhi Jal Board has already agreed to initially provide Rs.3 billion (Rs. 300 crore) to the hill state. “The Delhi government is willing to pay Rs.3 billion so that we can start the construction work,” said Kapoor.

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