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Locals’ stir may delay NHPC work

Posted by Ramesh Khati on September 5, 2009

GANGTOK, 4 SEPT(PTI): Two of state-owned NHPC’s proposed hydel projects in Sikkim may be delayed by three to five years due to resistance by a section of locals, according to a senior NHPC official.
Of the two projects, the finalisation of the Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the 520 MW Teesta Stage IV project in North Sikkim has been delayed by at least two years apparently because of “resistance” by local people at the instance of an apolitical outfit – Affected Citizens of Teesta (ACT), the official said on the condition of anonymity.
A section of Lepcha tribals were instigated by the ACT not to cooperate with the NHPC officials in investigations work for nearly two years after the NHPC and the state government signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the Teesta Stage IV project in September 2007, he said.
With all required formalities getting delayed beyond the stipulated time frame, the commissioning of the Teesta Stage IV hydel project will be delayed beyond its scheduled time of 2011 to 2012, he said.
The Centre of Inter-Disciplinary Studies of Mountain Environment (CISME) report claimed that the ecology and environment of Chungthang valley and adjoining regions will be damaged irreparably due to large scale construction work for hydel projects in the region and had asked the state government three months ago to stop work on them. PTI


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