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PESHAWAR: The Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) is making concerted efforts to complete diversion system of the Dasu Hydropower Project by April 2023 in order to start construction work on the water reservoir. The project is likely to start generating electricity by November 2026.

This was stated by Wapda Chairman Lt Gen Sajjad Ghani (retd) during his visit on Wednesday to the sites of the hydropower project being constructed on the Indus, upstream of Dasu town in Upper Kohistan district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

During the visit, the Wapda chief witnessed construction activities underway at various sites of the project, including inlet areas of diversion tunnels, main access tunnel, power house cavern, right bank access road, staff colony and the contractor’s camp.

Wapda’s member for water and commissioner of Hazara Division accompanied him during the visit. Senior officials of the project management group and representatives of the consultants and contractors were also present.

The project’s senior managers briefed Lt Gen Ghani on the pre- and post-flood scenario of the project. He was informed that construction activities had resumed at as many as nine of the sites after the recent floods.

The 4,320MW Dasu Hydropower Project is being constructed in two phases. At present WAPDA is building the first phase, having an installed generation capacity of 2,160 MW and annual generation of 12 billion units of low-cost and environment-friendly electricity.

When completed, the second phase will supply 9 billion units to the national grid. On completion of both the stages, Dasu will be the project with the highest generation capacity in Pakistan — 21 billion units on an average.

Wapda is spending Rs17.34 billion on the schemes related to resettlement, environmental management and social development in the project area. About 3,722 jobs, including 1,945 for locals, have so far been created. The number will increase to 8,000 during peak construction period of the project.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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