PM Modi arrives in Ladakh today

To inaugurate power projects, lay foundation of Sgr-Leh transmission line

Prime Minister Narendra Modi would arrive in mountainous Ladakh region on Tuesday to inaugurate two hydel power projects. The Prime Minister, who would be on his second visit to J&K, would also lay foundation of Rs 1700-crore Srinagar-Leh transmission line.
A senior State government official said Modi would first fly to Leh district in Ladakh to inaugurate the 45-MW Nimoo Bazgo power project. Thereafter he would reach Kargil to inaugurate the 44-MW Chutak power project. Both the projects are owned by the National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC) and have started generation last year. 
The Nimoo-Bazgo is set up on the Indus River at village Alchi in Leh and is a Run-of-the-River project. The Rs 985-crore project is designed to generate 239 MUs of energy from three units of 15-MW each. The Chutak 
Project, built on Suru River (tributary of Indus) in Kargil district, is also a Run-of-the-River project. Set up at the cost of Rs 894 crore, Chutak is designed to generate 216 MUs of energy from three units of 11-MW each.
The Prime Minister is scheduled to address public gatherings at both the venues.The 330-km Srinagar-Leh transmission line, to be constructed by the Power Grid Corporation of India, would connect the desert region with the Northern Grid.
At present the power demand of Ladakh, having mountainous terrain with no electrical connectivity with the outside world, is being met through hydropower generation from some local small micro Hydel power projects and diesel generators.
Pertinently, last month, Modi inaugurated the Udhampur-Katra railway line in Jammu and 240-MW Uri-II hydropower project in Uri town of north Kashmir’s Baramulla district.    
Following the BJP’s win in the Lok Sabha polls in Jammu region and Ladakh, the party has set its focus on J&K as the Assembly elections are drawing nearer in the State. The party has already launched an aggressive membership drive in Kashmir and is paying attention to Ladakh region as well.
Modi embarks on his maiden visit to Leh and Kargil tomorrow during which he will be meeting Army and IAF personnel besides inaugurating two hydro-power projects.
Modi’s visit to the high-altitude Himalayan towns is expected to touch on demands of locals in Leh and Kargil including employment generation and an assurance to take up with China and Pakistan respectively the issue of opening of Mansarovar road from Leh and re-opening of Kargil-Skardu road.
Leh town is all decked up to welcome the Prime Minister with hoardings been erected at various places and BJP’s Lotus flag seen prominently at various traffic intersections.
BJP bagged the Ladakh parliamentary constituency for the first time this year when its candidate Thupstan Chhewang won the seat by a slender margin of 36 votes.
The Prime Minister, who will be accompanied by Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal and National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, will be received at the airport here by state Governor N N Vohra and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah besides senior ministers.
Chief Executive Councilor of Ladakh Hill Development Council Rigzin  Spalbar told PTI that the people of Ladakh had high expectations from the Prime Minister’s visit. “I hope the BJP lives upto its promise of granting Union Territory status to the region,” he said.
Spalbar, who has been raising various issues about the difficulties faced by people of this region, said he would also flag the frequent incursion bids by Chinese and attempts to “terrorise” the local population living along the Line of Actual Control (LoAC). The Prime Minister, after his arrival here, will be addressing the airmen and army men who have been guarding the border in harsh winters in high altitude areas including at the world’s highest battlefield at Siachen glacier. The new Army Chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag arrived here today to firm up arrangements for the VVIP visit. The soldiers of ITBP have been pressed into service for securing all the venues.
BJP leaders Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Avinash Rai Khanna (Rajya Sabha MP who looks after Jammu and Kashmir) were seen working out last minute preparations for a public rally at the Polo Ground in Leh where Modi will inaugurate 45 MW Nimoo Bazgo Hydroelectric Project. After this the Prime Minister will fly to Kargil town where he will hold a public rally and inaugurate Chutak Power station and lay foundation for power transmission line linking Leh-Kargil-Srinagar.

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