Buddhist monks in Arunachal Pradesh’s Tawang have again strongly opposed the state government’s fresh push for hydro power projects in the northeastern border state.
The Save Mon Region Federation (SMRF), an organisation of Buddhist monks, in a statement, said that the proposed plants would not only affect the nesting grounds of the endangered black-necked crane but also threaten several holy Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the western region of Arunachal Pradesh.
The statement said that most of the hydro power projects are proposed in the Tawangchu and Nyamjangchu river basins, a habitat of the black-necked crane, which is considered a holy embodiment of the 6th Dalai Lama who was from Tawang.
“The power projects would damage the geographically-volatile and highly-seismic Tawang region. The villagers of the 27 villages would also be affected if the dams and reservoirs were constructed for the power projects,” the SMRF said.
The National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC) has proposed to set up two hydro power projects with proposed generation capacity of 600 MW and 800 MW in Tawang district.
Chief Minister Pema Khandu, on a number of occasions, has emphasised that works of under construction and proposed power projects must be stepped up for the betterment of the state and the country.