SHILLONG: NEC Secretary Ram Muivah has said that the Council has so far taken up seven hydro/ thermal projects with a total installed capacity of 694.50 MW (30% of the current installed capacity) in the region, benefiting all the eight States, industries and other major establishments in the region.
Muivah said this while addressing the press on a seminar on ‘Power Scenario in the Northeast’ going to be held at Shillong on November 16. The seminar is being held with support from the Meghalaya Government and the Research Centre for East and North Eastern Regional Studies (RCENERS).
Meanwhile, the RCENERS on Wednesday said that electrification of every village in the region is a ‘misnomer’.
“While only a few houses get power supply, the rest are left out,” Ashok Dasgupta of RCENERS said. He also said that in the Northeast only 50 per cent of the villages have been electrified.
Dasgupta also said that India’s power tariffs are as high as those in the developed countries. “The monopoly has led to such a situation. But if there are more entities in the (power) market there will be competition and the consumers can chose the cheapest rates,” he added.
Meanwhile, the RCENERS said that the north-eastern region has abundant renewable resources of power such as wind, solar, biomass and hydro.
The RCENERS also stated that India has been on a dam planning spree and to utilize the power potential in 44 dams that has been commissioned on the Siang alone. “This ad hoc planning of hydropower projects without considering its effects on ecology and displacement of human habitation can prove disastrous to our ecology,” the research centre said.
A Central Water Commission (CWC) report recommended scrapping of 15 of the 44 dams.
According to the RCENERS, although on paper the Northeast has a very large resource of hydro power, but the question is: how many can be really harnessed without disturbing the ecology of the surrounding?
Also Read: Meghalaya News