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CHITRAL, March 14: The German government has planned to electrify the entire Chitral district by constructing hydropower stations and exploiting water potential in the area.

A delegation of a German donor organisation, KFW, visited different areas of the district, including Kalash and Bumburate valleys, to select suitable sites for construction of power stations.

The delegation was led by the division chief of KFW, Jens Clausen, and its other members included Jahannes Heikmann, Dr Jordy and Dr Pervaiz Neyyar.

The chief executive officer of Sarhad Rural Support Programme (SRSP), Shahzada Masoodul Mulk, also accompanied the delegation.

He apprised the delegation of importance of constructing hydropower generation in the district. “The construction of such stations will reduce dependence of locals on forests and fulfil their needs of energy for domestic use,” he told the delegation.

He said that the low cost electricity would also create job opportunities and boost micro-level cottage industry in the area. “It will ultimately lead to poverty alleviation,” he added.

Mr Mulk said that only in Bumburate valley, two mini hydro power stations, with a capacity of 50 and 100 kilowatts respectively, were approved. The construction of those power stations would help promote tourism industry in the valley, he said.

The members of the delegation also held meetings with locals during their visits to Lotkoh, Garam Chashma, Laspur, Terich, Torkhow and Yarkhoon areas.

“The life standard of people in the remote villages will also be improved if the areas get electricity at a lower rate,” Mr Mulk said.

According to sources KFW will execute the projects of hydropower generation through SRSP and Aga Khan Rural Support Programme.

Sources said that KFW team expressed satisfaction over the hydropower generation projects, already carried out by SRSP in different valleys of Chitral.

“Community participation approach will be adopted in execution of these projects. The concept has already been implemented during the projects of SRSP, which provide necessary resources and expertise to representatives of local communities,” sources added.