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Power crunched J&K loosing 60-lakh units free electricity per day

india Updated: Jun 26, 2012 20:15 IST
Tarun Upadhyay

Power crunched J&K is loosing about 60-lakh units of free electricity per day from 240 MW Uri-II Hydel project at Uri, district Baramula, because of the ongoing two-month long strike, which was to be commissioned in April this year.

Some locals residents are on strike since March 19, demanding implementation of cabinet order, dated October 2000, reserving jobs for locals in the project in class C and D categories. The protestors are not allowing any further construction activity.

"NHPC is bound to fill all class C and D categories with locals as per the cabinet order which is rectification of MoU signed between the then chief minister and then union power minister," said PHE minister Taj Mohi-ud-din, who is also local MLA.

National Hydroelectric Power Corporation(NHPC), which has executed the project has, however, discounted implementation of cabinet order.

"The cabinet order-though we have respect for it- was brought to our notice only this year. And secondly the Corporation has to go by the MoU in which no such condition was put," said a senior official of NHPC, not authorisied to speak to media.

The Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) signed between then CM Dr Farooq Abdullah and then union power minister Kumaramanglam reads that locals will be provided jobs only after adjusting surplus staff in these categories on the Corporation.

This position was reverted in the Cabinet Order, just a month after signing of the MoU.

The Cabinet order is not singed by the chief minister. It was not brought before NHPC which started work on 2005 and was to commissioned in 2012.

The State government itself has suffered losses of Rs 200-crores of income and NHPC had lost another Rs 500-crores.

The initial estimation cost of Rs 1700 crores has also escalated because of the strike.

As per the estimate about 2,000 locals engaged by different contractors, earning Rs 10,000 per month have been rendered job less.