NTPC’s tale of woes over Loharinag Pala hydro power project refuses to die down easily. While NTPC is facing pressure from its contractors to settle its liabilities, its request for compensation for stopping the project midway has fallen on deaf years. According to NTPC, the government owes Rs 536.3 crore as compensation for abandoning the project. NTPC has now requested the Ministry of Power for formation of a ‘Settlement Commission’ to resolve the issue and release the payment to the contractors. NTPC has also requested the Ministry to convene meeting of the Settlement Committee to consider Sub-group’s recommendations of proposed reimbursement of Rs. 32.27 crore as a payment for cost of the land.
NTPC’s 150 MW x 4 Loharinag Pala Hydro Power Project was a run-of-the-river hydroelectricity project planned at an estimated cost of Rs 2,895 crore. The project was located on the river Bhagirathi, the headstream of the Ganges River at Loharinag Pala in Uttarakhand. NTPC had awarded the main project construction contracts and construction was started in 2006. However, work had to be stopped in 2009 due to strong protests by environmentalists. The project was officially scrapped in 2010.