PM will inaugurates Diamar Bhasha dam next month: Pervez Ashraf

ISLAMABAD: Minister for water and power Raja Pervez Ashraf has said Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani will lay foundation stone of Diamar Bhasha dam next month which will produce 4500 megawatt electricity.

Raja Pervez Ashraf said this while speaking in Meet the Press program in National Press Club Monday.

He went on to say the investors had left the country due to deteriorating law and order situation and terrorist activities. Power generation target could not be achieved due to this factor and country had been hit by energy crisis.

Highlighting the overall performance of the government he said all the parties would have to get united on one platform against terrorism the way they showed unity in passage of 18th and 19th amendments from parliament.

He went on to say that the basic reason of the crisis is major difference in demand and need and noted that 70 % electricity was produced from hydle while 30 % was produced from thermal till 1985. He said that the crisis occurred due to IPPs in 1994 as the country need was fulfilled till 2005 but the crisis reemerged as no new power projects were gained to overcome the power crisis.

At the moment, there is shortage of 3500 to 400 megawatts in the country, he underlined. The government is trying to overcome the issue of the power crisis through increase production of Terbela and Kohala projects, he added.

The minister hoped that the construction of Diamar Bhasha dam would overcome the issue power crisis. One thousand megawatts electricity was saved due to cooperation of the people last year.

He said that the cost of 750-long transmission line from Iran is eight hundred million dollars, adding that the government is trying to decrease dependency on oil. 1925 megawatt extra electricity will be added this year, which will reduce the load shedding, the minister added.

He said that 150 employees were sacked due to their involvement in power thieving cases.

To a question, Raja Pervez Ashraf said that the country would get 700 to 800 megawatt power through the completion of the projects of rental power. He said that the ministry fined those power companies, which did not implement the agreements.

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