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Seti River diverted for construction of major dam in Tanahun Hydroelectric Project

TANAHUN: In a significant milestone, the Seti River has been successfully diverted to facilitate the construction of the main dam with a capacity of 140 megawatts in the Tanahun Hydroelectric Project.

The Seti River has been redirected from the construction site of the 140-meter concrete main dam to a downstream area in Rishing Rural Municipality-1 and Byas Municipality-5. This remarkable achievement was accomplished through the diligent efforts of a team of tunnel divers responsible for managing the river diversion.

Key figures from the district, including Shantiram Wagle, Chairman of the District Coordination Committee, Kulman Ghising, Executive Director of the Nepal Electricity Authority, Chhabilal Regmi, Chief District Officer of Tanahun, and Priyantha Wijayatunga – Senior Director, Energy – Asian Development Bank (ADB), gathered on Monday to mark the commencement of the river diversion project.

The river diversion aims to prepare the site for the construction of a temporary concrete dam approximately 40 meters upstream from the main dam construction site, also known as the Kafar Dam Area. This temporary dam will facilitate the construction of the main dam before the upcoming monsoon season.

Kiran Kumar Shrestha, Director of Tanahu Hydropower Ltd., emphasized the importance of the river diversion project and how it has been a focus of attention. The project is progressing steadily, with a 46% completion rate. The entire project is slated to be finalized by 2083 BS (May 2026).

Shantiram Wagle, Chairman of the District Coordination Committee, lauded the progress made in the project and recognized its significance, aiming to complete it at a fast pace. He emphasized that the project is designed to address local challenges collaboratively and is dedicated to delivering results in a timely manner.

Baikuntha Neupane, Mayor of Byas Municipality, urged vigilance among local residents to ensure the project’s timely completion. He acknowledged that the project has entered a new phase in addressing concerns, despite having faced some setbacks.

Dadhiraj Subedi, Mayor of Bhimad Municipality, highlighted the positive direction in which the project has moved, despite initial apprehensions and challenges. He encouraged continued progress and positively impacting the community.

Raj Kumar Regmi, Chief District Officer of Tanahun, stated that the project represents a source of national pride and has positively influenced the employment landscape, contributing to the nation’s development. The project is deemed a symbol of national pride, largely due to the significant role played by local governance and administration.

Priyantha Wijayatunga – Senior Director, Energy, from ADB recognized the achievements in the energy sector in Nepal, particularly with projects like the Tanahun Hydroelectric Project. He mentioned that similar large-scale projects have been successfully implemented in recent years, promoting investment and social and environmental benefits.

Kiran Kumar Shrestha, Director of Tanahu Hydro Power Ltd informed that the construction of the Tanahu Hydropower project with a reservoir is being carried out diligently at the specified time. He mentioned that the project has been centralized in terms of attention, with local authorities, administration, local residents, and all stakeholders collaborating in the project.

Tanahun Hydropower is one of the biggest reservoir-type projects in the country. The project is expected to generate 587.7 GWh in the first 10 years of operation. The project can generate energy for six hours daily during the dry season.

The US $ 550-million project is being built with credit extended by the Asian Development Bank ($ 150 million), Japan International Cooperation Agency ($ 184 million), European Investment Bank ($ 85 million) and investment amounting to $ 87 million from Nepal Electricity Authority and the government.

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