Bharatpur-Bardaghat transmission line completedMany other transmission line projects are facing obstruction from local residents.
The 74 km-long Bharatpur-Bardaghat transmission line took 13 years to complete as the project faced obstructions from local residents in some areas while the contractor also failed to carry out works on time.
On Tuesday, Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) announced that construction of the 220kV transmission line was completed. This comes as a huge relief to the state-owned company, which faced local obstruction at Nawalparasi (East of Susta) for a long time.
The power monopoly said the transmission line has been charged at 132 kV capacity for the time being to transmit 170MW electricity. Through the old single-circuit 132kV line, only up to 90MW was being transmitted, the NEA said in a statement.
The NEA said once the under construction line from New Butwal to Bardaghat is completed, the Bharatpur-Bardaghat line can also be charged at 220kV capacity to evacuate up to 1,000MW power.
Earlier, locals from Dumkibas area of Binaya Tribeni Rural Municipality of Nawalparasi (East of Susta) continued obstruction even after last year’s Supreme Court order. Locals were obstructing the construction of two pylons for more than two years while 244 out of 246 transmission towers were already erected. Locals who were demanding realignment of the transmission line had filed the case at the Supreme Court, which had issued an interim order in April 2021 to stop construction works.
On June 27 last year, the Supreme Court had allowed the NEA to carry out the remaining works in the project by vacating an interim order it issued earlier. But it took another year for NEA to continue the work after reaching consensus with the locals.
Obstruction on construction of transmission lines has been widespread across the country. This, according to NEA officials, could badly affect the evacuation of power from many projects that are under construction.
Dirghayu Kumar Shrestha, chief of transmission line directorate, said that there has been obstruction on the Hetauda-Dhalkebar transmission line project, too. “NEA was facing local obstruction at Hatiya of Makawanpur district for more than two years,” said Shrestha. “Locals have not allowed us to construct power lines demanding their realignment.”
According to him, the NEA is required to erect over a dozen transmission towers at the location where locals are protesting. The 220kV Hetauda-Dhalkebar power line is part of the Bharatpur-Hetauda-Dhalkebar transmission line. Bharatpur-Hetauda section of the power line has already come into operation.
The state-owned power utility body has also been facing local obstruction to carry out construction works for a substation at the Lapsephedi area of Shankarapur Municipality-3, Kathmandu.
The substation is a part of the 400kV Naya Khimti-Barhabise-Lapsephedi power line.
According to the NEA, the transmission line is vital to bringing power from the plants built on the Tamakoshi and Sunkoshi rivers and their tributaries to Kathmandu Valley, which is the country’s major load centre.
Tara Prasad Pradhan, deputy managing director of NEA, said that no solution has been found to settle the dispute with locals so far.