Kohala Hydro Power Project in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan

Due to people's protests for concerns over ecological and social impacts, Chinese financers temporarly withdrew in December 2018. People fear this plant will reproduce distress as in the Neelum Jhelum power project


The 1124 MW Kohala Hydro Power Project is the largest foreign direct investment under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) [1]. Located in the north-east region of the country, the project is planned to be built in the Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK), on a branch of the River Jhelum that flows into Azad Jammu and Kashmir. It will be the second of six hydropower schemes planned to be built on the Jhelum River.

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Basic Data
NameKohala Hydro Power Project in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, Pakistan
ProvincePakistan Occupied Kashmir/Azad Jammu and Kashmir
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Water Management
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Dams and water distribution conflicts
Land acquisition conflicts
Specific CommoditiesElectricity
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsAccording to Kohala Hydropower Company, a private entity led by the China Three Gorges (CTG) organisation, the annual energy generation (on an average) of the project’s main power station would be 5.079 billion kWh, with 122MW guaranteed output and 4,617 hours of capacity utilisation. Similarly, the average annual energy generation of the ecological flow power station has been estimated to be 95 million kWh with 8.4MW guaranteed output and 5,280 hours of yearly utilisation hours of installed capacity. The total annual generating capacity of the main power station and ecological flow power station would be 5.174bn kWh.

All details in the company’s webpage: http://kohalahydro.com/Layout
Level of Investment (in USD)2.500.000.000
Type of PopulationRural
Start Date2016
Company Names or State EnterprisesKohala Hydro Power Company (KHCL) from Pakistan - Water Managment
China Three Gorges Corporation (CTG ) from China
China Three Gorges South Asia Investment Limited from China
Lahmeyer International from Germany - https://www.lahmeyer.de/en/projects/hydropower-water-resources/single/article/1124-mw-kohala-hydropower-project-pakistan-1/
Relevant government actorsPakistan Water And Development Authority-WAPDA, Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB), Ministry of Water and Power
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersSave Jhelum Save rivers committee, People Rights Movement
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingFarmers
Local ejos
Social movements
Fisher people
Forms of MobilizationMedia based activism/alternative media
Objections to the EIA
Street protest/marches
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Floods (river, coastal, mudflow), Food insecurity (crop damage), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Soil contamination, Soil erosion, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems
Socio-economic ImpactsPotential: Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Project StatusUnder construction
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseStrengthening of participation
Withdrawal of company/investment
Project temporarily suspended
Do you consider this as a success?Not Sure
Why? Explain briefly.Despite the withdrawal of Chinese companies, the project has not been scrapped and no proper action by the government taken to avoid the ecological and social impacts.
Sources and Materials

Designed to Fail
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Kohala Project Land Acquisition May Completes in December
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AJK seeks revision in construction design of Kohala hydropower project
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[2] Kohala project land acquisition may complete by December
[click to view]

[1] China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) website
[click to view]

[3] DAWN - AJK likely to get Rs12bn annually as net hydel power profit

Amin Ahmed

Updated December 31, 2018
[click to view]

1100 MW Kohala Hydropower Project— Approval of Feasibility

Stage Tariff Proposal
[click to view]

[5] Shutter Down Strike Observed In Muzaffarabad
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AJK President Sardar Muhammad Masood Khan Expresses Satisfaction Over Development Plan
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Media Links

Protest against construction of Kohala Hydropower
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Protest against construction of Kohala hydropower
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Other Documents

Shops shutdown_Jan 2019 Source: https://www.urdupoint.com/en/kashmir/shutter-down-strike-observed-in-muzaffarabad-526728.html
[click to view]

Project design Source: https://www.nepra.org.pk/Tariff/Petitions/2017/Kohala%20Submitted%20Proposal%20-%20June%2023%202017.pdf
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorHassan Turi, Awami Workers Party, [email protected]
Last update19/06/2019