Srinagar , Dec 13 (UNI) Expressing concern over the worsening power situation, especially in the Valley during harsh winters, Jammu and Kashmir Minister for Finance Tariq Hameed Karra demanded transfer of Salal Power Project (SPP) from National Hydro Electric Power Corporation (NHPC) to the state.
Jammu and Kashmir is facing huge resource loss due the Indus Water Treaty (IWR) with Pakistan, he said adding while the country's northern states and most of the Pakistan is flourishing at the cost of State's water resources, its own people are living in darkness.
He said the government would press for the transfer of Salal Power Project to the State, as has been also recommended by the Prime Minister's Task Force on Jammu and Kashmir, to tide over the acute power shortage plaguing its growth.
Interacting with the representatives of industry, trade, tourism, transport and hoteliers, as part of his pre-budget consultations, Mr Karra said the major hurdle impeding the State's economic growth is the power shortage, and some hurried and concrete measures are needed to tackle this problem.
He said the Government could not wait endlessly for the huge power projects to come up in the State to meet its power requirements and some immediate steps need to be taken to improve the power position.
''While on one hand, our power purchase bill is mounting every day putting tremendous stress on the State's financial resources, at the same time we are not able to meet our power requirements fully, resulting in public unrest,'' Mr Karra said adding that the Government must seriously ponder over this critical issue at the earliest.
He said the State Government would forcefully push for the transfer of the Salal Power Project from the National Hydro Electric Power Corporation (NHPC) to augment the acutely scarce power supply in the State.
He said the worsening power situation, especially in the Valley during harsh winters, is a matter of grave concern for the Government as it is causing immense hardships to the people.
The State and the Central Government shall have to respond to the situation with a sense of urgency, he said.