KATHMANDU, Feb 29: Locals of Dolakha have obstructed the construction of the Singati-Lamosanghu 132 kV transmission line project, demanding the change of route or appropriate compensation.
The construction of five towers under the project has been halted because of the obstruction at Bojh-8 and Jhingano-9 of Bhimeshwar Municipality. Tilottama Himali Food Production and Research Center has obstructed the construction of a tower at Bojh. The company has stated that the construction of the tower on its land will have negative effect on its business.
Locals have obstructed the construction of four towers at Jhingano, saying that the route of the transmission line should be shifted and if not, then they should be provided with appropriate compensation. The construction has been halted as a local, Santosh Tamang has not allowed the construction of a tower on his land. Other affected locals have said that they will let the construction take place only after Tamang allows the construction of a tower on his land.
According to project officials, foundation for 117 towers out of the total 124 towers, under the 40-km transmission line, has been prepared so far. The targeted completion date for the project is mid-May this year.
The transmission line is being constructed to transmit the electricity produced from hydroelectric projects near Singati River of Dolakha and Tamakoshi River basin to the national grid. The Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) has tried to resolve the issue through numerous efforts but has not been successful so far.
Kulman Ghising, managing director of NEA , during his visit to Dolakha, discussed the issue with the locals to resolve the problem. “The construction of 25 MW Singati River and other projects are in the final stage, if we don't complete the construction immediately, we will have to pay huge amount as penalty,” he told Bhim Kant Sharma, chief district officer of Dolakha in a meeting. “The construction process of such important and sensitive project should be eased.”
CDO Bhim Kant Sharma said that he has been trying his best to resolve the issue. “We will discuss with those who are obstructing the project and if they don't agree, we will move forward according to the administration law to complete the project.”
The 25 MW Singati Khola Hydropower Project, which is in the final phase will be connected to the transmission line. Battu Lamichhane, chairman of the project's promoter Singati Hydro Energy Ltd, said the project has been affected as Chinese technical manpower have not returned to Nepal due to the widespread outbreak of coronavirus and will result in delay of the project.
The construction of the project was started in Fiscal Year 2008/09. According to project chief, Rajan Dhungel, if the construction work takes place with no obstruction then the project can be completed on time.