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LAHORE: WAPDA is all set to divert River Indus for Diamer Basha Dam Project through almost 1 km-long diversion tunnel and 0.8 km-long diversion canal by November this year.

After the diversion, River Indus will flow through the diversion system and re-join its natural course downstream of main dam site. River diversion is one of the key activities for implementation of this mega multi-purpose project.

Chairman WAPDA Engr Lt Gen Sajjad Ghani (retd) was apprised of this development during his visit to Diamer Basha Dam, being constructed on River Indus, 40-km downstream of Chilas.

Construction work is progressing on 13 different sites. The upstream starter (coffer) dam to facilitate river diversion under stage-1 has been completed, while work on downstream starter (coffer) dam is going on and expected to be completed by November for stage-1 diversion.

The Chairman was briefed about progress on the diversion canal to be used during high-flow season. Targets and achievements on the project were also discussed during the briefing. Later, the Chairman had a detailed visit of various sites; diversion tunnel, diversion canal, up and downstream starter (coffer) dams and downstream permanent bridge in particular. He also inaugurated newly-constructed field hospital at the project site.

Diamer Basha Dam has a gross water storage capacity of 8.1 MAF to irrigate 1.23 million acres of additional land. Power generation capacity of the project stands at 4,500 MW, with annual energy of 18 billion units green and clean hydel electricity. A sum of Rs.78.5 billion is being spent on resettlement of affectees and CBMs in health, education and infrastructure development.

The Chairman also visited Dasu Hydropower Project and reviewed construction activities on the project. GM Dasu Hydropower Project and representatives of the consultants and the contractors were also present on the occasion. The 4320 MW-Dasu Hydropower Project is planned to be completed in two stages.

WAPDA is constructing its stage-I with installed generation capacity of 2160 MW and annual energy generation of 12 billion units. Rs. 17.34 billion have been earmarked to execute CBM schemes for economic and social development in the project area.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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