SAMBALPUR: After a delay of nearly two years, work on construction of the additional spillway of Hirakud Dam Project is likely to resume soon. The dam authorities will float a fresh tender with revised estimate for the project after approval of the State government. Chief engineer of Upper Mahanadi Basin Ananda Chandra Sahu said the bid documents have been sent to government for final approval following which a fresh tender will be floated for construction of the additional spillway.
The additional spillway was proposed after the Central Water Commission (CWC) gave recommendation to enhance the floodwater discharge capacity of all major dams to 1.5 times of their current capacity. Subsequently, Tata Projects Limited and AGE Group, Turkey were selected to jointly carry out the work. Work started in January 2019 but the two firms backed out of the project in February, 2020 alleging delay in handing over of land for the project by the government.
At the time when the companies withdrew from the project, around four lakh cubic metre soil had already been excavated. The firms had received Rs 12 crore out of the total budget for the work. However, their contract was later cancelled and there has been no progress on the project since then.
Sources said after revision of the project estimate recently, the bid document for floating fresh tender got administrative approval. Earlier, the estimated cost of the project was Rs 369.53 crore. Now, the revised estimate is Rs 634.21 crore. As per the project proposal, length of the additional spillway will be 91 metre and it will have five sluice gates. The width of the channel will be 300 metre and the length 1.9 km. The spillway channel will originate from near Gandhi Minar on the left dyke of the dam and meet Mahanadi river near Jawahar Udyan.
Currently, Hirakud Dam has 98 gates including 64 sluice and 34 crest to discharge floodwater. The existing discharge capacity of the 98 gates is 15 lakh cusec. The floodwater discharge capacity of the dam will increase to 18 lakh cusec after completion of the additional spillway project.