Proposal to construct Budhigandaki put on hold ‘to please Oli’

File: Lok Darshan Regmi

Kathmandu, February 28

It has been more than 20 days since a Cabinet meeting chaired by then Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba endorsed a report on the modality of domestic investment for the construction of ambitious Budhigandaki Hydropower Project. However, the file has not been sent to the concerned ministry yet.

Sources say Chief Secretary Lok Darshan Regmi has put the report on hold deliberately as he wants to please the new government led by CPN-UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli.

The left leader, who had warned of revoking the decision when the Deuba-led government cancelled the agreement signed with China’s¬†Gezhouba Group and decided to build it on its own, has recently told a Chinese newspaper that he will revive the project. Oli’s statement has been interpreted as his desire to remove Deuba’s decision and give the 1,200-megawatt back to China.

Therefore, Regmi does not want to move forward the report on the modality of domestic investment developed by a panel led by then-National Planning Commission Vice-Chairman Swarnim Wagle, according to a source at the Office of the Prime Minister. The source says Regmi has not put his signature on the decision till the date.

Energy Ministry secretary Dinesh Ghimire also confirms that the Ministry has not received the proposal after it was endorsed by the Cabinet.

“In general, we will receive Cabinet decisions within three to four days,” he says, “No decision has taken more than one week to arrive here so far.”

Published on February 28th, Wednesday, 2018 11:03 AM

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