Nepal | November 19, 2019

Maoists threaten to shut hydroelectricity projects

Himalayan News Service

KATHMANDU: Main opposition, Unified CPN-Maoist today threatened to shut Upper Karnali, West Seti and Arun-III hydroelectricity projects if the agreements pertaining to these were not reviewed.
Lilamani Pokharel, who heads the party’s Water Resource Department, said his party had arrived at a conclusion to shut all these projects as they would not be in the interest of the country and the people in the long run.
"India is looking for an opportunity to abort the constitution drafting process and to push anti-national projects to serve its vested interest. We’ll not let them succeed at any cost," said Pokharel. He was addressing an interaction — Foreign Investment in Water Resource and Issues of National Interest — organised in the capital today. The past agreements must be reviewed, he said.
He alleged that India was conspiring to send military to Nepal on the pretext of guarding these projects. "We will stand firm until the agreement reached between the government and project promoters is amended upholding national interest," explained Pokharel.
Maoist politburo member Dharmendra Bastola revealed that Seti, Mahakali, Karnali and Tharuwan State Committees were preparing to issue statements forcing the closure of the projects. "The heads of three state committees have agreed on the closure of the projects. The committees will issue a joint press release within a few days," he said.
Gopal Kirati, in charge of Kirat State Committee and Maoist politburo member, said they had warned the Arun-III project to stop work with immediate effect. GMR-ITD Consortium and Sutlej were awarded the responsibilities by the government to construct 300 MW Upper Karnali and 400MW Arun III hydropower projects, respectively, while SMEC won tender to build 750 MW West Seti project.

A version of this article appears in print on February 06, 2010 of The Himalayan Times.

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