The Peshawar Electric Supply Company (Pesco) Shangla office received two installments of Rs 200 million from Water and Power Development Authority in Kohistan domestic consumers’ arrears as Wapda moved to implement of agreement inked with the residents of Kohistan in 2022 after frequent protest rallies.
Sources in the Peshawar Electric Supply Company’s Shangla office confirmed that the payment had been received in two cheques from the Wapda the other day and thus the bills of Kohistan Upper, Kohistan Lower and Kolai Pallas Kohistan had been paid.
They said the Wapda provided the funds for paying the arrears of Kohistan’s domestic consumers as was promised by the Wapda with the Kohistan elders as compensation from 4500 meagwatt under-construction Dassu Hydropower Project.
The documents and cheques copies obtained from the Pesco, Wapda urged the Pesco to pay the bills due on domestic consumers of Kohistan till 31-12-2022 as the list of those consumers was provided by the Pesco previously that in compensation of Dassu Hydropower Project, being constructed at Upper Kohistan.
The first installment cheque is Rs 99,978,506 and the second installment is Rs 99,915, 746 with both the Kohistan domestic consumers bills would be paid as well as fulfilling the required formalities.
The payment of Pesco arrears by Wapda was promised after the residents of Kohistan staged protest rallies and seeking Wapda to fulfill its promises with them for constructing Dassu Hydropower project and Diamer Bhasha dam.
For the first time Wapda paid arrears of the Pesco consumers as a compensation of a dam construction as several hydropower projects constructed in Malakand and Hazara divisions but not paid the consumers bills by Wapda.
Zakria Zahid, executive engineer, Pesco office Shangla told The Northern Post that two installments had received his office for over 1700 consumers so far and one last installment was remaining.
He said they would compile the list for the last installment and that would be probably of Rs 70 million for the remaining dues of Kohistan domestic consumers hence the Kohistan consumers would pay their fresh bills from January 2023 onwards as dues paid by Wapda.
Hafeez ur Rehman, social activist who actively participated in the rallies for the rights of Kohistan in returns of constructing dams, said it was the first ever move the Wapda implemented and the rest of demands yet to be accepted as it was a long list of over a dozen demands inked with the elders of Kohistan by Wapda in presence of former PM’s advisor, Amir Muqam.
He said they wanted the Wapda fulfill each and every promise and bring prosperity to the backward Kohistan.
Locals halt work on Dassu Hydropower Project in Kohistan