At a time when sections of people of various interests have been conspiring against him, Managing Director of Nepal Electricity Authority Kul Man Ghising has been rushing from one end to other to accelerate the pace of the projects.
After travelling and holding the discussions with local community in Udayapur to clear the obstruction on 132 kV double circuit transmission line construction on Monday, Ghising Marched to inspect the construction of Upper Tamakosi site driving almost 300 bumpy roads.
As Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli and Minister of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation Barshaman Pun directed NEA's MD and chairperson of Tamakosi Ghising to complete the project by June, the pace of work need to accelerate.
As the project has already completed 355 meter Upper Vertical shaft and Lower Vertical Shaft, the most complicated and challenging task to install remaining 137 meter lower and 171 meter upper is currently undergoing in pace.
Constructed under national investment, 456 MW Upper Tamakosi is a national priority project which has delayed due to several reasons including earthquake, Madhesh Agitation, structural change and delay of work by lot 2 contractor Texmaco Rail & Engineering Ltd. (TEXMACO).
The current pace has drastically improved. Now, it takes seven and five days to install 10 meter long pipes of upper and lower vertical shaft. If things go like in the present without major technical obstruction, the installation of vertical shaft will complete by April 2020.
After this, installation of pen stock pipe will begin in vertical areas between lower and upper tunnel and it will estimated take one and half months. During his visit, MD Ghising inspected the project and discussed with officials, consultant and all three contractors of the project on their routine for the completion of the project.
Contractors have expressed their determination to complete the work as per their routine. MD of NEA and Upper Tamakosi Hydropower Company Ghising has directed the concerned officials and contractor to work aiming to to start generation from at least one unit (76 MW) by 15 May 2020.
Following the completion of the first project, remaining other five units will start generation gradually. "Prime Minister, Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation ministers are seriously concerned about the completion routine. All the concerned involve in the project need to work seriously to start generation of one unit in ongoing fiscal year," said MD Ghising. "We are ready to facilitate, coordinate and necessary support to complete the project in routine," said MD Ghising. He said that the lot 2 contractor has significantly improve the performance.
Following the delay of contractor TEXMACO, which is responsible to supply penstock pipe and installation, the responsibility of installation of lower shaft pen stock is given to contractor of lot 3 ANDRITZ HYDRO with consent from lot 2 contractor.
Upper Tamakosi Hydropower Limited, Texmaco and Andritz Hydro signed tripartite agreement on last December to work without additional cost. Although Andritz has been installing lower vertical shaft, Texmaco has been installing upper pen stock on its own.
MD Ghsing phoned head of Texmaco requesting to deploy the additional technical staffs to complete the project as per the new schedule. Few months ago, secretary of ministry Dinesh Kumar Ghimire, MD Ghising and Chief Executive Officer Bigyan Prasad Shrestha visited head office of Texmaco in Kolkata and met high officials.
According to Bigyan Prasad Shrestha under the civil work grouting and concretizing in the tunnel is in final stage and the preparation of the installation of gate in audit tunnel is under way. He said that installation of equipment in powerhouse has already completed and the installation of 127 towers of transmission line also completed and 47 kilometer conductors has already laid.
Similarly, the civil work of 220 kV new Khimti Substation has already reached in final stage. Shrestha said that the project has been working to complete the remaining work of installation of equipment within four months..
The project was delayed due to earthquake, after shock, disruption by flood and landslide, Madhesh Agitation, problems of transpiration of construction materials due to short supply of energy, design change and weak performance of hydro mechanical contractor.