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Salma Dam to become operational in one year: Herat governor

AT Monitoring Desk-KABUL: Governor of the western Herat province said that construction work on the Salma Dam was going on in full swing, and the project would take one year to complete.

Refuting reports about security challenges in front of the project, Mohammad Asif Rahimi assured that nothing could hamper the project.

He said that essential machinery and other required equipments were supplied to the site to avoid further delay.

Rahimi said that work over the project was halted as the water level was rising. However, he said the engineers would resume work in July once the water level dropped in the facility.

Commander of the 207 Zafar Military Corps, Gen. Taj Mohammad Jahid, said the security forces were fully prepared to thwart any bid that is aimed to sabotage this vital dam project.

He said that currently there was no security-related challenge.

Pajhwok adds: But a number of residents of Herat City, the provincial capital, recalled that local officials had been pledging for years to build the dam but those commitments could not be materialized.

Abdul Qadeer Yarzada, a resident of 9th police district of the city, said it was a trend here when every governor took oath that work on the Salma Dam would be started.

Wakil Ahmad Sohail, another resident of the locality, said: “We have heard a lot of tall claims of officials but practical work yet to be initiated.”

In 2006, India promised funding for the reconstruction of the Salma Dam at an estimated cost of $200 million.

Once completed, the hydroelectric plant would produce 42 megawatts of power in addition to providing irrigation water for 75,000 hectares of farmland.

In January 2013, the Indian cabinet approved revised cost for the completion of the project and declared it would be completed in December 2014 — four years behind original schedule.

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