The left headrace tunnel of the under construction 969 MW-Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project (NJHP) has been successfully connected with amazing engineering precision under River Jhelum according to Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) in a press briefing today.
The NJHP is being constructed in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and on its completion the project will contribute 5.15 billion units of low-cost and environment friendly electricity to the national grid.
The progress is being termed ‘a significant development’ towards completion of run-of-the-river Neelum Jhelum Hydropower as the right headrace tunnel of the project has already been connected in river cross section in first week of January 2016.
WAPDA Chairman Zafar Mahmood is confident to complete the first power generating unit of the project in mid-2017 and rest of the three units in phased manner by December 2017. “Neelum Jhelum Hydropower Project is 78 percent complete,” asserted Zafar Mahmood.
According to WAPDA Member (Finance) Anwar-ul-Haq, the redesigned composite dam is about 74 percent done and the spillway is 100 percent complete; about 60.5 kilometers out of 68 kilometers long tunnel (88 percent) has so far been excavated while the power house and the switchyard are expected to be completed in November this year.
About PKR 250 billion have so far been spent on the project according to a press briefing. Anwar said the issues relating to availability of funds for completion of the project have almost been resolved.