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Work on power project in Kaghan valley goes on despite emergency

By Our Correspondent
March 27, 2020

MANSEHRA: The work on the 885 megawatts Suki Kinari Hydropower project being built at Kunhar River in Kaghan valley is still in progress 24/4 despite a complete lockdown everywhere in the district.

“The work on this mega energy project is though in progress. we have been adopting all precautionary measures laid down by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government to in order to contain the spread of coronavirus,” Bilal Khan, the deputy director commercial and technical affairs of dam told reporters on Thursday.He said that labourers were mandated to either stay 24/7 at sites or go on leaves. “Each and every labourer is screened, sprayed with sanitisers before moving to worksites,” Khan added.The chief minister’s special advisor on population, Ahmad Hussain Shah, had conveyed his reservations to deputy commissioner about the possibility of the outbreak of coronavirus because of big gathering at dam’s worksites. “I am concerned about the safety of labourers still working there in a large number and asked the deputy commissioner to take notice of the issue,” Mr Shah, who hailed from Kaghan valley, said.The former Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf provincial secretary of civil society and culture, Taj Mohammad Khan Swati told reporters that lockdown means the suspension of any sort of activities and staying at home.“As social distancing is highly important to contain the outbreak of Covid-19, and if over 800 labourers working in each of 18 tunnels, how this valley could be secured of that deadly virus,” he added.He said that he had also approached DC Hazara division, Zaheerul Islam and demanded him to enforce government’s lockdown there too but to no avail. Meanwhile, the National Bank of Pakistan has started transmitting salaries of over 100,000 government employees of Mansehra and Battagram districts in their accounts.

“We have been adopting all precautionary measures to contain the spread of Covid-19 and started shifting salaries of over 100,000 government employees into their accounts,” Nadeem Ahmad, the regional head retails NBP told reporters on Thursday.