INDIA’S STATE OF HIMACHAL Pradesh government temporarily shut down the recently completed 1500MW Nathpa Jhakri Hydro Project (NJHP) in early August for the second time, and activated emergency response plans.
The action was caused by the possibility of a dam breach flood from an overloaded Tibetan Reservoir flooding across the border and damaging the NHJP. Over 100Mm3 of water had accumulated in the artificial lake on the river Pareechu, 35km inside Tibetan territory by 9 August 2004. The possible dam breach flood was considered to be several times the capacity of the spillway gates at the Nathpa Jhakri reservoir’s dam. Thousands of villagers along the river bank were evacuated and the Indian army was put on standby to deal with any disaster.