Pakistan Peoples Party Official

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Murad Reviews coal mining work, installation of 660 MW power plants at Thar

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KARACHI (Aug 2) :  Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that it was the dream of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto to steer the country out of darkness of load-shedding by generating electricity on coal-fired power plants. “She had started this work with my father Syed Abdullah Shah, the then Sindh chief minister and now Almighty Allah has given me the opportunity to realise the dream of my leader and complete the work my father had perhaps left for me.”

This he said while presiding over a meeting today at CM House to review the progress of Sindh Engero Coal Mining Company (SECMC) in mining operation it had started in Thar Coal Filed Block-II and to install a coal-fired Power Plant to generate 660 MW by 2019. The meeting was attended by SMBOR Rizwan Memon, Principal Secretary Naveed Kamran Baloch, Secretary Energy Agah Wasif, Secretary Home Riaz Memon, Secretary Irrigation Zaheer Hyder Shah, CEO SECMC Shamsuddin Shaikh, his two directors, Fazal Rizvi and M. Saqib.

CEO SECMC Shamsuddin Shaikh briefing the chief minister said that the mining operation has been started on war footings.  He added out of 112 m BCM over burdern (OB) 7 meter BCM has been removed. This shows that overall 6 percent progress has been achieved against the planned 5.3 percent progress.

He said that 31 meter mine depth has been achieved, large scale mining equipment would reach by next month and drilling of de-watering wells and other infrastructure is in progress. He added that the revised outlook $7663 million against the estimated $845 m.

Talking about the progress of two coal fired power plants, each one of 330 MW, Mr Shaikh said that basic engineering has been completed, procurement activities are ahead of schedule with the placement of purchase order (PO) for boiler, Steam Turbine and Steam Turbine Auxiliaries. He added that the construction activities at the site include advanced completion of Piling at Stack Area and Turbine Main Hall while construction of the foundation of Piling of Turbine Pumps is in progress. It would cost &1.1 billion.

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah urged the SECMC CEO to accommodate as much local in jobs as possible. On the chief minister was told that presently, 2,028 employees were working on there, of them 647 were Chinese, 997 Tharis and 384 others. The chief minister directed him to create employment opportunities for the women.

The chief minister taking a policy decision approved to establish a school over two acre land near Thar Lodges, Islamkot so that local residents would be imparted proper education. “I am keen to see Tharis working on good positions in the companies working and to work at Thar Coal filed,” he said and urged the secretary Finance to get the school started on Public Private Partnership mode.

The chief minister was informed that some 500 dump truck drivers were required for Mining project for which 400 would be Tharis.  It was disclosed that training of 200 drivers by NLC has been started at Rs30 million. So far 100 drivers have been inducted for mining operation.

The Chief minister directed IG police to provide more security at Thar coal field Block-II for Chinese engineers. The home secretary informed the chief minister that presently 35 Rangers personnel have been deployed on the security of foreigners working at Block-II. Apart from it 134 policemen have also been deployed at the Site. More police force would be deployed there till the creation of a special force of 2000 ex-armymen for CPEC projects.

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