J&K gets seven power projects

NEW DELHI, JULY 20. The Union Power Ministry and the Jammu and Kashmir Government today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for implementation of seven hydroelectric power projects in that State. The total generating capacity of these seven projects would be 2,798 MW.

The MoU, signed by the Minister for Power, Mr. Rangarajan Kumaramangalam, and the State Chief Minister, Dr. Farooq Abdullah, here today, pertains to the 330-MW Kishanganga projects, the 280-MW Uri stage two, the 1,020-MW Bursar project, the 120-MW Sewa second stage, the 1,000-MW Pakal Dul project, the 30-MW Nimmo Bazgo and 18-MW Chutak projects. These projects would be executed in a phased manner and completed in about 10 years.

With the implementation of these seven projects, the winter peak demand of Jammu and Kashmir will be fully met and the power shortage in the northern region would also ease considerably. The J&K Government will get 12 per cent free power from these projects as per the existing guidelines and would also get an additional 15 per cent Central share of unallocated power at bus bar rates to meet its needs for winter peak requirement. Employment opportunities for local people, particularly in group C and D posts, would be an additional benefit for the State. The local population would be absorbed after adjusting the surplus staff of the executing agency, the public sector National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC).

In addition to these seven power projects, the Kishenpur Wagoora 400-KV line would be executed by another public sector organisation, Powergrid Corporation Limited.

The J&K Government has also promised to consider expeditiously the request of Powergrid for taking over the existing 220-KV line with adequate safeguards for meeting the requirement of J&K from time to time.

In return for these projects, the State Government has undertaken to implement power sector reforms and the first step towards this would be to privatise distribution of power in Srinagar and Jammu. The NHPC has already completed three projects in J&K, namely, the Salal stage one and two and the Uri hydroelectric project, totaling 1,170 MW generating capacity and another project, Dul Hasti, is under execution.