Over 200 families in Kishtwar to be hit by Kiru, Kwar hydel projects

JAMMU: Two upcoming mega hydel projects — 624 MW Kiru hydroelectric project and 540 MW Kwar hydroelectric project — over the Chenab river in the mountainous Kishtwar district will affect over 200 families whose land will be acquired for these.

editorial@tribune.com

Arteev Sharma

Tribune News Service

Jammu, October 12

Two upcoming mega hydel projects — 624 MW Kiru hydroelectric project and 540 MW Kwar hydroelectric project — over the Chenab river in the mountainous Kishtwar district will affect over 200 families whose land will be acquired for these. Though they will get financial assistance, there is no provision of an alternative residential site for them.

“Under the Kiru hydel project, a total of 141 families will be affected. Of these, at least 92 will be fully displaced. As far as Kwar hydel project is concerned, the number of families getting affected will be 63. Of these, 29 will get fully displaced,” Mohammad Syed Khan, Assistant Commissioner Revenue (ACR), Kistwar, told The Tribune.

Khan said the government had decided to award compensation on the pattern of land acquired for the construction of 330-MW Kishanganga hydroelectric project in Gurez area of north Kashmir.

“Nearly 80 per cent of the land being acquired for the Kwar project belongs to the state. There is no major hindrance in acquiring land for this project. We don’t have an alternative site available with us where we can resettle the displaced families,” he said.

For the Kiru project, nearly 50 per cent of the land being acquired belongs to local people, while the remaining is the state land, Khan said.

The ACR said they would be ensuring the award of compensation by the end of this month which will pave the way for starting work on this mega project in the next couple of months. “It will open a Pandora’s Box if we go for the re-settlement of affected families on alternative land,” the ACR said.

Sources said the state government had asked the 16-member empowered committee, constituted for the implementation of the Rehabilitation and Resettlement Plan for the affected families of the Kiru project, to finalise and monitor the implementation of the plan. The Chief Secretary of the state is the chairman of the empowered committee.

The Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change had given the environmental approval to the Rs 4,640.88-crore Kiru hydroelectric project in June last year. The Kiru project will be developed by Chenab Valley Power Projects (CVPP) Pvt Ltd, a joint venture among the NHPC, J&K State Power Development Corp and the Power Trading Corporation of India. The CVPP had taken over the project from the NHPC in June 2013.

Similarly, the Union Environment Ministry had also accorded environment clearance to 540-MW Kwar project in the Chenab river basin. The estimated cost of the project as approved by the Central Electricity Authority is Rs 4,949.24 crore.


Kiru hydropower project

The project having the installed capacity of 624 MW, a run-of-river scheme, is about 40 km from Kishtwar. The project envisages the construction of 135-m-high (above the deepest foundation level) dam and an underground power house with four units of 156 MW each. The expected annual energy generation from the project is 2,363.55 million units (MUs).

Kwar hydropower project

The project having the installed capacity of 540 MW, also a run-of-river scheme, is located about 31 km from Kishtwar. The project envisages the construction of 109-m-high dam and an underground power house with four units of 135 MW each. The expected annual energy generation is 2,075.37 MUs.

Compensation

  • Each affected family is to get Rs 33 lakh each in addition to the relief for house and land
  • Rs 26 crore earmarked for compensating families affected by the Kiru project
  • Rs 4.5 crore allocated as compensation for families affected by the Kwar project

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