By Our Reporter
SHILLONG: Union Power Minister M Veerappa Moily on Monday laid the foundation stones for the 85 MW Stage II Mawphu hydel power project and the NEEPCO residential complex at the NEEPCO premises.
Estimated to cost Rs 453.81 crore, the Mawphu project is expected to be completed within four-and-a-half years.
This is the first power project in the State being executed by NEEPCO.
Addressing the gathering after the foundation stone laying ceremony, the Union Power Minister said that the Northeast with its potential in power generation can become the power house of the country.
He asked NEEPCO to fast track the completion of the Mawphu hydel power project in East Khasi Hills within two to three years.
“Hydel power is cheap and clean and while implementing the project, NEPPCO should also ensure to improve the socio economic development of the people residing in and around the project site,” Moily said.
He also said that efforts should be made to minimize environmental impact whenever a hydel power project is implemented in the Northeast.
The Power Minister also said that the Centre will make sure that by the end of the 12th Five Year Plan, Northeast becomes self sufficient in power. The Minister also asked NEEPCO to develop the thermal power project in Garo Hills.
Earlier, speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma said that the State Government was exploring the viability of other hydel projects which can be taken up by NEEPCO.
He also urged NEEPCO to speed up the implementation of the 500 MW thermal power project in Garo Hills and assured all support from the State Government in this regard.