37 years on, Tehri stirs to life
OVERCOMING DECADES of hiccups, one of the largest dams ever built, the 2400 MW Tehri Dam project was dedicated to the nation on Sunday —37 years after it was first conceptualized.
Although production of 250 MW from the project's first stage began earlier this month, a formal inauguration by Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde has paved way for generation to take place on a regular basis from now on.
However, the event also had its share of controversy with Uttaranchal Chief Minister Narayan Dutt Tiwari remaining absent. Discontented with the way such a significant event was organised, the CM decided to stay away, said Congress sources.
While Shinde stated that Tiwari abstained from the event due to some unforeseen problems, many present felt the unwillingness to face displaced families, some of whom are still agitating for better compensation, could be the main reason. Officials were skeptical about displaced residents or Tehri hydro development corporation officials demanding pay hike, disrupting the ceremony, however, nothing of that sort happened.
"Today's event is a landmark in our dream to provide electricity to all by 2012. Synchronisation of the other three units of the first stage would take place in two months, adding another 750 MW power to the northern grid," said Shinde.
He expressed gratitude towards the displaced families for their sacrifice and assured financial help from the Centre to address all issues related to rehabilitation. Besides benefiting nine states in north India, power from the project would substantially add to the energy pool of northern region and during peak output, shall also stabilize the northern grid, stated THDC officials.