Monday, June 8, 2009
NEEPCO seeks clearance from Mizoram govt over Tipaimukh project
Imphal | June 7 : Amidst the objections from various circles, officials of NEEPCO will be holding a meeting with the Mizoram government on June 10 for obtaining forest clearance tag from that state which is still pending even though there has been reports doing the round that there is the possibility of intervention of the Bangladesh government in the construction of Tipaimukh Multipurpose Hydel Project.
Mention may be made that hinting interference to the construction of the dam at Tipaimukh for the project, Bangladesh government has announced sending of an all-party parliamentary committee to visit the dam site, according to media reports.
Bangladesh experts are worried of hitting the flow of the Surma and Kushiara rivers originating from Indian side by the located barely 1 km from Bangladesh's Zakiganj border. The project would leave the river and other downstreams dry, upsetting the ecological balance and affecting many people, experts observed.
The proposed step of the Bangladesh government was taken up amidst the strong objection to the construction of dam at Tipaimukh area of Manipur on the Barak river by various NGOs and civil organizations.
On the other hand, despite the odd ahead of it, with the forest clearance for the Tipaimukh project was accorded by the Union ministry of Environment and Forest as recommended by the Manipur government, North Eastern Electric Power Corporation – NEEPCO officials are pursuing the forest clearance with the government of Mizoram. The authority is hopeful of obtaining the Mizoram Forest Department’s recommendation by June 30, 2009 as NEEPCO officials will be holding a meeting with Mizoram government on June 10, official source here said Saturday.
It is also pertinent to mention here that with the receipt of the environmental clearance for taking the project in October last year, 2008, the project cost has further been updated at September 2008 price level.
The updated cost (excluding the components for flood moderation, external security and diversion of national highway, but including internal security and NPV), works out to Rs 8138.79 crores including IDC of Rs 1570.73 crores. The first year tariff and levelised tariff works out to Rs 4.65 and Rs. 4.03 per unit respectively.
With the effort of the Manipur government's approval for meeting the cost component of flood moderation has been obtained from the ministry of Water Resources for meeting. The update estimate is Rs 542.16 crores. Union ministry of Shipping Road Transportation and Highway has also conveyed its “in-principle” approval to meet the cost of diversion of NH-53 which the estimated cost has been updated at Rs 202.63 crores.
“In-principle’ approval for meeting the cost of providing external security to the project which has been estimated at Rs 299.17 crores has also been obtained by the Manipur government from the Union ministry of Home Affairs, the source added.
Considering the importance of the 1500 MW Tipaimukh Project to Manipur, Mizoram and Assam, Manipur government has decided to join the proposed Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) for the implementation of the project.
Manipur chief minister has proposed to take up of the project under a SPV with prospective partners like NHPC, NTPC, SJVNL long with NEEPCO and government of Manipur. Even though NHPC was willing to join the SPV provided 51% stake in the equity is given, NTPC has declined to participate. The project is being taken up by the NEEPCO as joint venture with the Manipur government and the government has recently finalized state government decision to take 5% equity in the proposed SPV.