Lahore(Parliament Times): An agreement was signed between the Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) and Special Communication Organisation (SCO) worth Rs.860 million for an uninterrupted and state-of-the-art communication and information technology services for Diamer Basha Dam Project. The services may also be utilized for other WAPDA projects as well. The contract signing ceremony was held at WAPDA House the other day. WAPDA General Manager Diamer Basha Dam Project Muhammad Yousuf Rao and SCO Director Development Col Muhammad Saadi Manzoor signed the contract on behalf of their organizations. WAPDA Member (Water) Jawaid Akhter Latif and other senior officers of WAPDA and SCO also attended the ceremony. Diamer Bhasha Dam Project is of immense strategic significance, construction of which requires uninterrupted and state-of-the-art communication and information technology services in the project area in most challenging terrain and weather.Under the contract, SCO will provide 4G cellular sites equipment, transmission media comprising 300 Km optic fiber cable from Thakot to Chilas, power arrangements and all required civil works including construction of towers as well as commissioning of 4G Sites at various locations of Diamer Basha Dam Project.
It is pertinent to mention that the multi-purpose Diamer Basha Dam is being constructed on River Indus, 40 kilometers downstream of Chilas town. The project, commenced in mid 2020, is scheduled to be completed in 2028-29. Diamer Basha Dam will have a gross water storage capacity of 8.1 MAF to irrigate 1.23 million acres of additional land. With installed power generation capacity of 4,500 MW, the project will provide more than 18 billion units per annum to the National Grid. Construction of Diamer Basha Dam will also have a positive impact on the annual energy generation of the existing hydel power stations including Tarbela, Ghazi Barotha etc. that will increase by another 2.5 billion units. In addition, the life of Tarbela Dam, that has been playing a pivotal role for progress of the country since 1974, will also increase by another 35 years.