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NC scrapped Budhigandaki project to raise money for poll expenses: Oli

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Nov 14, 2017-CPN-UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli has accused the Nepali Congress (NC) of scrapping the deal to construct the Budhigandaki hydroelectric project with China’s Gezhouba Group Corporation in order to raise money for election campaign expenditure.

Addressing an introductory programme of left candidates organised in Kathmandu on Tuesday, Oli claimed that the NC-led government scrapped the agreement to award the project contract to another company by taking commission. He further charged that the NC had sold around one dozen projects like Budhigandaki before the local level elections.

The government on Monday revoked the agreement signed with the Chinese company to build the 1,200-megawatt project citing “instructions issued by parliamentary committees.” The government said the project would be taken ahead through Investment Board of Nepal.

Budhi Gandaki, a national pride project of the government, has been highlighted as a key hydroelectric project to resolve the perennial power crisis facing the country. Currently the government is acquiring land from locals in Dhading and Gorkha to build the project.

The hydroelectric project was recently listed as a component of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the China-led plan that envisages greater trade and connectivity and supports construction of infrastructure projects.

The government had allocated a budget of Rs5.33 billion for the project’s development for this fiscal year.

A Cabinet meeting on May 23 had approved the Energy Ministry’s proposal in principle to let the Chinese company build the 1,200 MW project under the EPCF model of project development.

Earlier in March 2017 and 2018, Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal and his predecessor KP Sharma Oli had sought Chinese investment in national pride projects during their visits to the northern neighbour.

ALSO READ: Budhi Gandaki hydro project plunges into uncertainty 

 

Published: 14-11-2017 16:10

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