NGT orders halt to tunnelling work at hydel project
In a move that is viewed as a setback for the already delayed Sawra Kuddu hydroelectric project, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has ordered a halt to work on construction of a fifth tunnel at the site following a petition filed by a local 'panchayat' on Tuesday. The Asian Development Bank funded project, that is facing a huge cost overrun of `606 crore, was earlier described as commercially unviable in a report submitted by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.
The Thana 'gram panchayat' had sought a stay on construction work saying the project authorities has not applied for a "no objection certificate" from the local 'gram sabha'. It also submitted the area in which the tunnel was being built was in a seismic zone and prone to natural disasters.
The tribunal's order may further delay completion of the project, located on the Pabbar river in Shimla district, work on which commenced in 2007. The CAG report said any further time overrun would lead to an increase in the cost of electricity generated from `5.03 crore to `10.50 crore per megawatt and that of per unit generation cost from `2.34 to `6.95.
Work on the fifth tunnel at the project site began in 2007 and, due to the delay in completing it, the project cost has almost doubled. Four tunnels were earlier built but villagers in the area have been opposing construction of another one, saying it would posing a threat to the region's apple orchards that are their main source of livelihood.
The state government had set up a holding company, Pabbar Valley Corp Ltd, in 2004 for execution of the project, which was later merged with Himachal Pradesh Power Corp Ltd in August 2007.
Police in Karnataka have succeeded in catching three more bike thieves who were involved in two separate cases. Bike theft: Chickpete traffic police, Bengaluru. August 10 A two-wheeler thief was caught by traffic police after he was stopped for not wearing a helmet. Bike theft: Belagavi. August 10 Meanwhile, in Belagavi, Kudachi police have arrested two persons for stealing bikes in various police stations limits. As many as 26 bikes have been recovered and seized.
Meghalaya will be hosting the upcoming North East Olympics Games beginning October 30 till November 6, 2022 in Shillong. Soon after chairing a high-level meeting between the North East Organising Committee, Directorate of Sports & Youth Affairs and the North East Olympic Association, sports & youth affairs minister Banteidor Lyngdoh stated that the sports selected were decided based on the availability of infrastructure and on the advice of the Meghalaya State Olympic Association.
The Bharatiya Janata Party's Karnataka unit on Tuesday took out a rally in Bengaluru in support of the central leadership's 'Har Ghar Tiranga' campaign in the run up to of India's 75th Independence Day. BJP National General Secretary C T Ravi along with several party workers participated in the 'Tiranga Yatra' by walking the streets with the tricolour. Not all were happy with the quality of flags.
A petition has been filed in the Gujarat High Court by Ahmedabad based Lord Buddha Foundation seeking inclusion of the Mahar community in SC (Scheduled Caste) category. Architect of the Indian Constitution, Dr Bhim Rao Ambedkar belonged to this community and they are recognised in most states of country barring Gujarat. The word Mahar is derived from the words 'Maha' which means great and 'Rashtra' means country or “people from the great country”.
Delhi's air quality was in the satisfactory category on Thursday morning as overcast weather and drizzle were likely on Thursday while the mercury was expected to drop to around 35C. On Wednesday, the average 24-hour AQI was 102 in the moderate category. An AQI between zero and 50 is considered 'good', 51 and 100 'satisfactory', 101 and 200 'moderate', 201 and 300 'poor', 301 and 400 'very poor', and 401 and 500 'severe'.