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Maoists threaten to stop dam work

world Updated: Jun 11, 2010 02:19 IST
Utpal Parashar

Opposition Maoists in Nepal and their sister organisations have threatened to stop work on the Saptakoshi High Dam Multipurpose Project, a joint Indo-Nepal venture in eastern Nepal.

The Maoists have demanded that work related to detailed project report of the 3000 MW venture should be stopped as the project is against interests of the local community and Nepal.

“If our voice is not heard, we will stop the project at any cost,” said Muksahang Menyangbo of Samyukta Jatiya Morcha, a Maoist-affiliated organisation.

On Wednesday, 15 organisations associated to UCPN (Maoist) had issued a fresh threat to launch a protest if their warning is not heeded.

The Ministry of Energy has requested the organizations not to disrupt DPR work and assured that all concerns would be addressed before any final decision on the project is taken.

“Benefits and negative aspects of the project would be known after the DPR is finalized. Any decision on whether to continue work or not would be taken after that,” said Anup Kumar Upadhyay, spokesperson for the ministry in a statement.

Besides generating power, the 269-metre dam is expected to irrigate 1.5 million hectares of land in eastern Nepal and India, control floods in Bihar and allow navigation.