Consultants recommends to merge the irrigation
tunnel of Mulkhow with hydro power project
CHITRAL: The consultant firm engaged by the irrigation
department of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for the feasibility study of an
irrigation channel scheme in Mulkhow union council of upper Chitral
has firmly recommended to merge its tunnel with that of an isolated
hydro power project and termed it cost effective as well as more
productive for power generation.
As per report submitted by the consultant firm (copy available with
Chitral Times ), during the course of survey and investigation for
the feasibility study of drawing water from the right side of
Terich river, it proposed a 5.8 Km long tunnel to bring under
cultivation 15140 acres of arid land under cultivation.
The report, at the same time, proposed that it has a fair degree of
possibility of merging with the tunnel of a hydro power project of
145 mega watt (MW) drawing water from the same source of the
irrigation project due to their proximity and presence of a number
of technical parameters.
The feasibility study of the power project titled Shushgal-Zandoli
HPP has been completed by the Pakhtunkhwa Energy Development
Organization (PEDO) many years ago for which a tunnel of 8.5 Km
length was proposed.
The report proposed the merger of the site of power project with
the tunnel of the irrigation project at its take-off point to cut
short its length by 2.7 Kms as its length from its take-point is
8.5 Km while its power generation capacity will increase to 2000 MW
from its present capacity of 145 MW due to the rising of its head.
“The inlet and outlet of both tunnels have similar access and
similar escapes to the Torkhow River and by merging the projects
one weir and tunnel would be required instead of two”, goes the
report adding that on merging the projects, anticipated
construction and operation and maintenance expenditures will be
reduced by more than half.
The report also negates any retarding effect of catchment area on
hydrology as no perennial stream existed between the weir sites of
both the projects and the structure of the earth crust was highly
stable in nature to support it.
A source in the irrigation department said that the merger of the
two projects will save billions of rupees on one hand and will also
cut short its completion period of the largest hydro-power project
of the district.
The MPA from upper Chitral, Syed Sardar Hussain Shah said that the
idea of merging the tunnels of the two projects was marvelous and
termed it ‘killing two birds with one stone’.
He said that he will take up the proposal of merging the projects
with the government which was quite possible as both the projects
pertained to the departments provincial government.