Joshimath: Amid evacuations and demolitions in sinking Joshimath, several residents and activists are calling for the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) to shut down its activities in the region, alleging that one of its projects contributed to subsidence in the area.
From the numerous small and big shops in the main markets to the residential properties, vehicles, and billboards, posters with the slogan “NTPC go back” have come up around the town in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district over the past few days.
Local people allege that the digging of a 12-km tunnel for the 520 MW Tapovan Vishnugarh hydroelectric project exacerbated the subsidence in the area.
The Joshimath Bachao Sangharsh Samiti (JBSS) on Monday demanded that the 520 MegaWatt Tapovan-Vishunaghat project developed by the NTPC be scrapped.
Activist Atul Sati believes that while there may be many reasons for making the region fragile, the current subsidence in Joshimath is to be blamed on the blasting caused for the project.
The NTPC, however, has denied any link between the project and Joshimath’s subsidence, saying the tunnel connected to the Tapovan Vishnugarh hydroelectric project is over a kilometre under the ground and not below Joshimath.