Phidim, July 23
Following protest by locals, construction of the 132 KV national transmission line at Kabeli Corridor in Siddithumka, Ilam, has seen no progress in the past two months.
Disruption in the under-construction transmission line is likely to cause delay in connecting the power generated from Ilam, Panchthar, Terhathum, and Taplejung to the national transmission line.
Locals have objected to the work in the corridor stating that towers of the 132 KV transmission line were being installed by going against the report of the corridor’s preliminary environmental impact evaluation.
The protesting locals have demanded that the towers be shifted from market places and human settlements to other areas. In case the project fails to shift the poles and towers, it has to compensate the locals.
Locals accused project officials of trying to bargain with them and going against the report of preliminary environmental impact evaluation.
The 132 KV national transmission line Kabeli corridor Chief Dipendraraj Dwibedi, however, said locals had halted the work though the work was under way in line with report. He accused some individuals of provoking the locals to disrupt the work of the Kabeli Corridor. Due to protest, work on the transmission line has failed to resume at Panchami bazaar area of Deumai Municipality. Necessary items and goods brought for the tower have been stranded at the site.
Due to obstruction in transmission line extension, power generated from different projects in Taplejung, Panchthar and Terhathum has gone waste.
With financial assistance of Rs 2.85 billion from the World Bank, Indian companies — Jagbar Overseas and Starjevi Pvt Ltd — are constructing the transmission line.
A version of this article appears in print on July 24, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.