Awaiting final environment impact assessment by the expert appraisal committee (EAC) of the Centre,the ambitious Fathebad nuclear plant in Gorakhpur is set to roll.
The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) nodal agency for the project has already started work on chain fencing the property that spans 1,313 acre where the plant will be situated and 187 acres where the residential colony will come up. The EAC,which has already taken stock of the ground level situation at the site,has forwarded certain queries on land compensation award and flooding of the area to the plant officials.
Over 10 senior officials of the plant have shifted their base to the site in Fatehabad. The plant will have two residential colonies one for its employees and another for Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel.
Once the Ministry of Environment and Forest gives green signal to the project,the project will go to the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board for final approval.
T R Arora,Project Director of the plant,said: We are ready with details to answer the queries. All formalities are now complete. The land is in our possession and is currently being chain-fenced. Once the MoEF clears the project in another two months or so,we will move for final clearance by the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board. Most probably,will be able to start construction by year end.
According to the policy,the home state is eligible to get 50 per cent share from the plant. This will majorly help the Haryana government,which is struggling to meet power demand of its consumers. The state that lacks enough own resources of power generation,has to buy power from private players during peak season.
Haryana is also vying to get its share in the plant on the basis of development indicators. If the NPCIL agreed to the demand,then the government will get another 5.6 per cent of power share from the plant. However,the NPCIL authorities are non-committal over the states claim on extra share.
Meanwhile,the state has given compensation to farmers whose land has been acquired for the project at the collector rate of Rs 20 lakh per acre besides a solatium at 30 per cent and interest at 12 per cent per annum under section-4 of the Land Acquisition Act-1894. The landowners have also received non-litigation incentive at 20 per cent in addition to the floor rate. The NPCIL had deposited the requisite amount of Rs 460 crore in June 2012 to the state for distribution of compensation.
The first phase (2X700 MW) of the project is expected to be commissioned during 2020. Under the first phase,2×700 MW units (1,400 MW) are proposed to be set up at an estimated cost of Rs 14,500 crore.