PaK govt won’t allow hydro projects by Pakistan without agreement

Muzaffarabad: The government of Pakistan administered Kashmir (PaK) won’t allow Pakistan to construct new hydroelectric projects in the state without a formal agreement with the former.
Prime Minister of PaK, Choudhary Abdul Majeed has refused Pakistan’s Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) to start work on 1100 MW Kohala Hydroelectric Project in the state.
“We have refused to allow the construction of Kohala Hydroelectric Project without the signing of agreement with PaK government and no official will be permitted to visit the proposed site of the project until an agreement is reached upon,” Majeed said, while addressing a news conference here at his office on Wednesday.
Prime minister disclosed that the 969 MW Neelum-Jhelum Hydroelectric Project was completed without signing of any agreement.
“WAPDA should have signed an agreement with the government before starting work on the Neelum-Jhelum project,” he said.
He maintained that the Neelum-Jhelum Project has damaged road infrastructure, triggered landslides and caused land sinking owing to movement by huge machines, tunneling and dumping.
Keeping these repercussions in mind, the work on Kohala will not be allowed until an agreement,” he said.
Majeed held his predecessor responsible for allowing construction of Neelum-Jhelum project without signing an agreement.
He said WAPDA’s “ill planed and senseless rubble dumping and tunneling has reduced the life of Mangla dam by 10-15 year.
“The life of Mangla reservoir has reduced enormously for which all the stake holders have to voice their concern in unison,” he said.
Terming frequent power cuts in PaK a big issue, the prime minister said that the issue has been taken up with federal minister for water and power, Khawaja Asif and federal minister for finance, Ishaq Dar and expressed hope that the issue will be resolved.