TODAY -

Revoke Power Purchasing Agreement on proposed 66 MW Loktak Downstream Hydroelectric Project

5th September 2020

 Leimatak River - to be submerged by the proposed 66 MW Loktak Downstream Hydro project in Manipur
Leimatak River - to be submerged by the proposed 66 MW Loktak Downstream Hydro project in Manipur



The Centre for Research and Advocacy Manipur (CRA) expressed our concern with the Power Purchasing Agreement (PPA) signed between the Government of Manipur and Loktak Downstream Hydroelectric Corporation Limited, a joint venture of National Hydroelectric Power Corporation Ltd (NHPC) and Manipur Government to construct the 66 MW Loktak Downstream Hydroelectric Project on 1st September 2020. NHPC envisaged to utilize water discharged from the Loktak Project from its Leimatak Power Station for Loktak Downstream project.

CRA would like to express that the NHPCs push for the Loktak Downstream project constitute a disrespect and rejection of the prolonged demands of the indigenous peoples of Manipur to review and decommission the Ithai Barrage of 105 MW Loktak Multipurpose Hydroelectric Project (Loktak project).

The signing of PPA for Loktak Downstream project is despite the appraisal of the Chief Minister of Manipur to the Prime Minister of India on 2 August 2017 and also by the Governor of Manipur earlier in September 2017 to remove the Ithai Barrage of Loktak project due to its impacts.

NHPC rather than assuming responsibility for the loss of land and livelihood of communities in Loktak wetlands insisted on seeking more profits by constructing Loktak Downstream Project, which will entail submergence of forest and agriculture land along Leimatak River.

The NHPCs Loktak Project instead of irrigating 50,000 hectares of agriculture land submerged similar area of agriculture land and reduced Manipur to a food dependent state. NHPC failed to conduct cumulative impact assessment due to operation of both 105 MW Loktak Project and Loktak Downstream Project.

The price of energy from alternate sources other than Hydropower has dropped drastically and indeed, the Government of Manipur for long refused to sign the PPA for the project due to high cost of the power.

Hydropower building is already redundant and the colossal resources to be invested in large dam building like Loktak Downstream project could be better utilized to promote alternative energies like micro hydel and solar energies, that would minimize social and environmental impacts.

The construction of 66 MW Loktak Downstream Project is still pre-mature and should be put on hold as the continued operation of 105 MW Loktak Multipurpose Hydroelectric Project will only complicate the woes and suffering of indigenous communities of Manipur affected by large dams.

The MoU signed between the Government of Manipur and National Hydroelectric Power Corporation on 26 September 2008 should be revoked. The power purchasing agreement should be revoked. The Government of Manipur and Government of India should urgently initiate steps to decommission the Ithai Barrage of 105 MW Loktak Project conceding the prolong demands of the people of Manipur.

(Sanaton Laishram)
President
Centre For Research And Advocacy, Manipur
Paona Bazar, Imphal
Manipur 795001


* This Press Release was sent to e-pao.net by CRA Manipur who can be contacted at cra(DOT)manipur(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This Press Release was posted on 04 September 2020

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