Meet on West Seti tomorrow

Kathmandu, June 23:

The meeting of the Parliamentary Natural Resources Committee (NRC) has been scheduled for Monday to discuss on the condition of contract of the West Seti Hydroelectricity Project (WSHP).

The meeting is scheduled to hear from chief whips of all the parties in parliament as to what their respective parties have to say on the controversial condition of contract signed between the government and Snowy Mountain Engineering Corporation (SMEC).

The meeting takes place in the wake of the Ministry of Water Resources (MOWR) replying to queries raised by the NRC now nearly two weeks ago.

The government was told to come out clearly on issues including why Nepal should not insist on power and not cash reimbursement when talking about 10 per cent additional royalty promised by the Australian energy firm.

Also at stake is the fate of the 760 families which will be affected and displaced by the 750 MW project. The NRC is yet to be told about the nature of rehabilitation. The condition of the contract signed between the government and SMEC kicked up latest controversy when Finance Minister Dr Ram Sharan Mahat insisted that Nepal should ask for 10 per cent cash reimbursement and not power as royalty.

Dr Mahat had reportedly said that it is not feasible for one powerhouse to distribute power in differing voltage to two different parties, a view which has been challenged by Nutan P Sharma, an engineer.