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Himachal Pradesh CM raises pending issues

By Staff
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Shimla, May 2 (UNI) The Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh today reiterated many pending issues including the allocation of 15 per cent power from the 300 MW Chamera-II besides emphasising the need for modification in the the MoU in the first meeting of the National Hydro Power Corporation (NHPC) held here.

Mr Singh raised other issues like 70 per cent employment to Himachalis, 1.5 per cent of the project cost earmarking for local area development activities, 15 per cent water flow downstream the dam site, safety measures, dumping of excavated material at safe sites at the meeting held to review the progress held under his Chairmanship here yesterday.

Deployment of atleast 30 per cent staff at executive level from Himachal Pradesh State Electricity Board (HPSEB), 30 per cent equity participation, in new and old NHPC hydel projects, opening up of police stations and labour offices were some of the other issues addressed at the meeting.

The Chief Minister said the state government had allocated the major share of 3,321 MW of hydel potential for exploitation out of the total identified potential of 21,000 MW and the NHPC had emerged the major player in hydel power generation in the state.

He said that the conditions of the MOUs and others of state, local people and employees interest also needed adherence .

Mr Singh said there was no upper limit for obtaining maximum equity participations in all the big ventures which could be upto 50 per cent as there was no dearth of funding agencies within and outside the country to carry such mega projects, even independently.

The state was not provided its due in terms of equity participation, free power and employment share in the projects executed in the state in the earlier years, he said.

The Chief Minister said the state government was viewing the low employment percentage in a number of hydel projects seriously since there was no dearth of qualified, skilled and unskilled manpower as the state was about to touch cent per cent literacy in coming time.

He said every hydel project above 50 MW capacity would be provided one labour officer who would be authority to issue photo identity cards ascertaining the identity of the worker with a view to identity of the worker and ensure best law and order condition beside requisite employment.

Mr Singh said the HPSEB had excellent power engineers who had been contributing significantly in identification of hydel potential, preparing detailed project reports and execute major hydel projects.

He said that the services of the State power engineers needed to be availed of by the project authorities for effective implementation of the MoUs.

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