On Monday, a worker was killed when a steel rib was installed on the roof of a headrace tunnel at NHPC as Subansiri (Lower) dam collapsed on him.
The Subansiri dam is the country’s largest run-of-river hydel project, and it is being built over considerable protests.
Moreover, a project employee told sources that the deceased worker, Jitu Hatibarua, was first rushed to the project site’s hospital. Hatibarua died on the route to the district hospital, where he was transferred.
“He was fixing the steel ribs (supports for the excavation) in the headrace tunnel (the tunnel which conveys water from the water intake to the powerhouse) when one rib came off
and fell on him. It was a very unfortunate accident,” the official said.
The company had planned to start up the first two units in August, producing 500 MW (250MW x 2) of clean power, but due to early rain, the timing could be pushed back a few months, according to the official.
The entire project, which includes all eight units, is scheduled to be completed in August of next year.
Construction of the Subansiri Dam began in 2005
Though construction on the Subansiri dam began in 2005, it was put on hold in 2011 owing to protests by student groups and environmentalists who were concerned about the downstream impact on Assam and the dam’s placement in a seismically active zone.