MUZAFFARABAD: Chaudhry Abid Sher Ali, Minister of State for Water and Power said that the AJK-based Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project is an important project for generation of low-cost electricity in the country.
He expressed these views during his visit to 969 MW Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project here on late Tuesday.
He said that all efforts are being made to complete the project on time in accordance with the directions of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif.
Chairman WAPDA Syed Raghib Abbas Shah, Chief Executive Officer of Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project, Lt. General (R) Muhammad Zubair, representatives of the consultants and contractors and senior officers of WAPDA were also present on the occasion.
The Minister said that democratic government is exploring all possible avenues to solve the energy crisis under the leadership of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif.
Chaudhry Abid Sher Ali said that the government was focusing on optimum development of renewable sources of energy particularly hydel, coal, wind, solar and biomass.
He said that the government was not only launching new projects in the hydropower sector but also taking steps to expedite the construction work on the ongoing projects.
He said that the government wanted to start Diamer Basha Dam and Dasu Hydropower Project simultaneously and together with Bunji Hydropower Project, these projects would add a total of 15,000 MW of cheap and environment-friendly electricity to the national grid.
The Minister of State for Water and Power had a detailed round of the various sites of the Project including powerhouse, transformers hall, and the weir (dam).
Earlier, Chairman WAPDA briefed the Minister of State for Water and Power about the progress on the project. He said that WAPDA was making earnest efforts to complete the project in line with the directions of the Prime Minister.
The Chairman WAPDA said that upon completion, Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project would contribute 5.15 billion units of cheap electricity to the national grid and the annual benefits accruing from the project have been estimated at Rs 45 billions.