N24 Correspondent, KATHMANDU:- Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has decided to allow the construction of the Lower Arun Hydropower Project by the Indian company Sutlej Vidyut Nigam.
The 46th meeting of the Investment Board held at the Prime Minister’s residence in Baluwatar on Friday decided to hand over the 679 MW Lower Arun Hydropower Project to Sutlej Power Corporation (SJVN).
A board meeting chaired by Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli selected Sutlej to build under the public-private partnership (construction, ownership, operation, and transfer-boot) model, said Dharmendra Kumar Mishra, spokesperson of the board.
India has been lobbying for the project for a long time. India, which is constructing the Arun III project, had pointed out from the Prime Minister’s Office and the Ministry of Energy to the Investment Board that it should also get the lower Arun.
In the last meeting related to energy with Nepal, India was raising the issue of lower Arun. Currently, the Indian company Sutlej Power Corporation is constructing the Arun III Hydropower Project.
The same company has got another project without completing 50 percent of work in the project with a total capacity of 900 MW.
Sutlej Power Corporation is working on the construction of the Arun III Hydropower Project by registering a company called ‘SJVN Nepal’.
During his visit to Nepal in August 2076, Indian Minister of State for Energy Raj Kumar Singh had expressed India’s desire to build a lower Arun in the form of Arun III. In a meeting with the then Energy, Water Resources, and Irrigation Minister Barshaman Pun, he said that the construction of Arun III was being done by India and the lower Arun could be completed easily if India got it.
Earlier, as the Leader of the Opposition, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli had expressed his support for the ratification of the Mahakali Treaty with India, saying that it was in Nepal’s interest.
Remember that even two decades after the ratification of the Mahakali Treaty, the Indian side has not shown any interest in the construction of the Mahakali project.
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