‘Speed up construction of Chameliya project’

Kathmandu, December 27

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) under the Legislature-Parliament has directed the Energy Ministry and Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) to speed up the construction works of the 30-megawatt Chameliya Hydropower Project in Darchula district and not halt it again under any pretext.

At a PAC meeting held today, the committee also suggested releasing the budget only after carrying out an investigation on the incident which led to the shrinkage of the 843-metre long tunnel of the project.

However, of the total length of the tunnel, 611 metres had been reconstructed after its shrinkage. The PAC also directed the concerned authority to repair the remaining part of the tunnel soon, PAC President Janardan Sharma said.

The PAC also drew attention of the Energy Ministry, NEA and concerned authorities to take action against those found to be involved in corruption and end the tendency of blaming others for any wrongdoing just to cover up their own shortcomings.

In response, Deputy Prime Minister and Energy Minister Top Bahadur Rayamajhi said that the budget would be

released and the tunnel would be repaired only after reviewing the disputed issues.

He added the government was working on resolving the problems surrounding the project and that it was committed to completing the project and taking action against those found to be involved in corruption.

Energy Secretary Suman Prasad Sharma said that the project would be completed within 10 months after the investigation into the shrinkage of the tunnel was completed. He added other works of project were going on.

The Rs 15.6-billion Chameliya project at Shikhar VDC-4 in Darchula was started in 2006 and was supposed to have

been completed in 2011, but it is yet to be completed due to various reasons.