Shimla: Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal said that between the upstream diversion of Beas River at Pandoh dam to Naudan there was potential to tap 300 MW of hydropower, which included the 55 MW Dhaula Singh hydroelectric project.
Speaking at a public meeting at Basaral in Hamirpur district, Dhumal disclosed that work on the Rs 477 crore Dhaula Sidh project which had been allotted to SJVNL, a public sector generation company, would start soon.
The Beas has been diverted at Pandoh by a tunnel and open channel link into Satluj River for augmenting the capacity of Bhakra dam reservoir. At the meeting point is Dehar project that has a generation capacity of 900 MW.
To harness waters from other streams like Uhl that meet the main river course downstream of Pandoh, the Bhakra Beas Management Board has constructed the earthen dam at Pong. While the backwaters of Pong since its construction in the late 1960â€™s has become a world famous bird sanctuary, the dam other than providing water for irrigation also generates 300 MW of power.
The Dhaula-Sidh and other projects like the 100 MW Uhl being constructed in the stretch between Pandoh and Pong would enhance the generation capacity of the large watershed.
Prior to the public meeting at Basaral, the chief minister inaugurated a 120 meter long footbridge over Kunah Khad. The bridge constructed at a cost of Rs 72.42 lakh would benefit a population of about 20,000, said Dhumal. He also dedicated a Rs 27.74 lakh footbridge on Salashi Khad on the occasion.
To develop Nadaun as a tourist destination, Dhumal said Rs 35 lakhs would be spent to create water rafting facilities on Beas. An amount of Rs 75 lakh would be spent to construct a mini secretariat and parking space in Nadaun, he added.