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Jammu and Kashmir government has given the go-ahead for the construction of a 332 km-long, 220 KV transmission line from summer capital Srinagar to Leh in the frontier Ladakh region that is suffering energy shortage. The approval to the State Power Development Department to sign an MoU with the Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (PGCIL) in this regard, was given by the state cabinet which met here yesterday under Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, an official spokesman said. The sanctioned cost of the project is Rs 1,788 crore and the cost of the project will be borne by the Centre and state in the ratio of 95:5, the spokesman said. The electricity supply system of Ladakh region is currently isolated from the Northern Grid and fed through local small hydro generation and diesel generator sets. The region is experiencing energy shortage and to overcome this, the 220 KV transmission line has been planned to improve reliability of power supply through interconnection with the Northern Grid. The Cabinet said the power department shall operate and maintain the transmission Line from Alusteng (Srinagar) to Leh at its own cost after taking it over from PGCIL. The finance department shall provide the necessary funds to the power department for operation and maintenance of the transmission line after it is taken over by the state government, the spokesman said. He said the Cabinet also instructed the finance department to issue necessary orders for waiver of all state taxes for construction of the 220 KV line. The 332 km long line would pass through Srinagar-Zojila-Drass-Kargil-Khalsti to Leh. The project was approved in January 2014 and is scheduled for commissioning in September 2017. Once completed, it will feed power to Ladakh region and interlink the state's existing 66 KV system, he said. The spokesman said the project is being executed by Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (PGCIL) and subsequently will be transferred to J-K Government after an MoU to this effect is signed between State PDD and PGCIL.
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