Locals of Hetauda obstructing upgrading of 132 kV double-circuit line

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By A Staff Reporter,Kathmandu, May 30: Residents of Sukauli area located in Hetauda Sub-Metropolitan City-15, Makwanpur have obstructed the upgrading (changing of wires) of 132 kV double-circuit transmission line.

The locals have been obstructing the work of changing the wire (conductor) of the line by demanding that the affected landowners have not been compensated during the construction of the transmission line about 41 years ago and the route be shifted. The work has been stopped since mid-April, 2023 due to the obstruction of the locals.

In order to increase the capacity of the East-West 132 kV double-circuit transmission line, the Nepal Electricity Authority is going to replace the old low capacity wire with a new high capacity wire in the 136 km section from Hetauda to Dhalkebar substation in Dhanusha.

At present, about 200 megawatts of electricity is supplied through the transmission line, but after changing the conductor, the capacity will be increased to about 400 megawatts, according to the NEA.

This will improve the electricity supply in that area, the electricity generated in the West can be transmitted to the east and the surplus electricity can be exported to India through the Dhalkebar substation.

Out of the 9.57 km transmission line from the substation at Chaukitol in Hetauda Sub-Metropolitan City to Kamane, 7.5 km wire of one circuit has been replaced.

In the Hetauda-Kamane section, while changing the wire, the old one connected to the tower has been tied temporarily. The rest of the work has been stopped due to the obstruction of the locals.

After the completion of one circuit, the work of another circuit will begin. The demand for electricity has increased in the Terai region, but because one circuit was closed to replace the conductor, it has become difficult to manage the electricity demand due to problems such as tripping due to insufficient capacity.

A high-level team, including Managing Director of NEA Kul Man Ghising inspected the construction site and discussed with the local residents and asked them not to obstruct the work of the line which is the backbone for the east-west electricity supply. In the discussion, Sunil Moktan, Ward Chairman of Hetauda Sub-Metropolitan City-15, said that the locals did not get compensation when the line was built about 41 years ago, and that houses could not be built due to the line.

"Government agencies cannot make decisions against the law, everyone should understand this obligation, the management of the NEA has assured us to address the genuine demands raised by the locals. It is not necessary to disbelieve them and not allow them to work, so let's support the work without obstructing," Moktan said.

Stating that the genuine demands raised by the locals will be gradually addressed, Ghising said that it is impossible to change the route of the line built about 41 years ago now.

"There is a problem in the construction of transmission lines all over the country. It is not possible to change the route of the line even under construction. So, it is impossible to change the route of the completed line," Ghising said.

"If the upgrading of this line is not completed, the projects of the Marsyangdi River Corridor will have to be wasted without being able to supply electricity. If such a situation occurs, the state will lose millions of rupees daily. Let's not think that all demands will be met by stopping the work of such an important line, let's not obstruct the work."

The contract agreement for conductor upgrade of the 132 kV transmission line was implemented on July 20, 2022. The goal is to complete the work by mid-January 2024. 


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