Govt seeks help to shift power cables underground in Chandni Chowk
The shifting of all electric wires to underground utility ducts is a critical component of the Shahjahanabad redevelopment plan.The Shahjahanabad Redevelopment Corporation (SRDC) may rope in technical experts to resolve this long-pending issue.delhi Updated: Aug 16, 2017 21:25 IST
As the Public Works Department (PWD) of Delhi government has failed to expedite the shifting of utility cables and power transformers in Chandni Chowk, the Shahjahanabad Redevelopment Corporation (SRDC) may rope in technical experts to resolve this long-pending issue.
The shifting of all electric wires to underground utility ducts is a critical component of the redevelopment plan of Chandni Chowk. The construction of the first trench along the northern carriageway was completed in December 2014. However, the work could not be started on the southern side due to various issues; relocation of transformer was one of the main reasons.
There are 10 transformers which are yet to be shifted out, of which four are on the northern side and six are placed along the southern carriageway.
Sources said the joint secretary of union power ministry also held a meeting with Delhi government, SRDC, and discom officials last month regarding the ‘stalled’ power related development work in Chandni Chowk in which the ministry had given its approval to bear the cost of shifting of power cables.
“In the meeting it was decided that the Centre can extended financial assistance to Delhi government if a concrete proposal is received. Now, the ball is in Delhi government’s court,” said an official privy to the development.
As per the integrated development plan for Shahjahanabad prepared by the SRDC, the cost of shifting of power cables is estimated at Rs 667 crore, which is under consideration.
Observing that the PWD is ‘unwilling’ to come forth with technical solutions, the Delhi High Court has now asked the corporation to engage private experts to prepare a detailed feasibility report on relocation of transformers underground if the department does not provide a way out.
“The court had directed the nodal officer of Shahjahanabad redevelopment project to convene a meeting on August 11 with power and PWD’s principal secretaries and other officials to find out a solution. As the meeting remained inconclusive, the SRDC has decided to take services of private specialists as per the court directions,” said a senior official of the Delhi government.
The cost of the study will be borne by the PWD as the court has directed, the official added.
Earlier, Chandni Chowk MP Dr Harsh Vradhan had also met Union Minister Piyush Goyal in June 2015 seeking allocation of funds for the project.
First Published: Aug 16, 2017 21:25 IST