Thursday, May 3, 2012

World Bank hydro project in Himachal Pradesh/India opposed

World Bank hydro project in Himachal opposed
By Baldev S Chauhan, Sun Post, May 1, 2012

Shimla : Villagers in Himachal Pradesh's Kullu district held protests on
Monday against the building of the 775 MW Luhri hydro electric project
in the state .

Around 78 villages are to be affected by the 38 km long twin tunnels
proposed to be built by the state run Sutlej Jal Vidyut Nigam Ltd(SJVNL) .

They allege SJVNL hasn't even taken an NOC (no objection certificate)
under the latest forest rights act.

Dayal Verma spokesman of the villagers told the Sun Post that local
villages are against the design of the project.

"The local village council has passed a resolution for stopping the
testing work in the area as this is in violation of the forest rights
act ," they claim.

They said the power company building the project should first seek the
required green clearances.

Green activists are also opposed to the "completely killing of the free
flowing of Sutlej river over a stretch of 50 km ," said Nek Ram Sharma
of the Sutlej Jan Sangarsh Samiti.

"We have noticed in all such projects in the state the construction of
tunnels are responsible for drying up of natural water sources around
them , we don't want this to happen here ," said Sharma.

Last month the union ministry of environment's committee had deferred
the decision on the forest clearance to this project on several grounds.

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