IESCO starts process for infrastructure uplift

Development comes after RCB approves payment of Rs750m against demand note

Jamil Mirza January 01, 2024
FESCO, LESCO, and IESCO jointly contribute Rs156 billion towards the government’s subsidy policy, while the remaining XWDISCOS consume a total of Rs314 billion in subsidies. This is despite these companies having access to more cost-effective options in the national energy mix. PHOTO: file


In a significant development, the Islamabad Electric Supply Company (Iesco) has initiated the procurement process for the necessary equipment required to implement the undergrounding of the electricity system in the garrison city’s Saddar Bazar neighbourhood.

The development comes on the heels of the Rawalpindi Cantonment Board (RCB) giving the green light for a payment of Rs750 million against a demand note issued by the power supplier. The payment, which is slated for the first week of January, is a key milestone for the ambitious project.

The decision is a pivotal move towards enhancing safety and aesthetics in the bustling business hub of the Rawalpindi cantonment. The estimated cost of the project, which focuses on three main roads connected to major markets of Saddar, amounts to Rs850 million. Out of this, Rs750 million will be allocated to the Iesco.

Additionally, the RCB has initiated the process of awarding a civil work contract valued at Rs90 million.

Read  IESCO eyes Rs750m from RCB

The targeted roads in Saddar Bazar, where the existing overhead wires and poles will be removed, include Mall Road, Kashmir Road, Hyder Road, Bank Road, and the northern side of Mall Road’s service road.

The anticipated completion timeline for this ambitious project is set at eight to nine months.

Talking to The Express Tribune on the condition of anonymity, RCB sources said the undergrounding of the electricity system will not only enhance safety measures but also eliminate accidents. They emphasised the transformative impact of the project on the entire neighbourhood.

Furthermore, the project is expected to contribute to the beautification of the roads where the electricity infrastructure will be placed underground.

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The RCB sources reveal that stringent instructions have been issued to ensure the quality and timely completion of the underground transmission of the electricity system project. Additionally, bazaars in Saddar initially excluded from the first phase will be incorporated into the second phase of the undergrounding project. This expansion aligns with the commitment to comprehensively address the electricity infrastructure needs of the entire Saddar area.

It has been learnt that connecting the old commercial area of Rawalpindi to the underground electricity system has become imperative due to safety concerns. Dangling electric wires at Saddar Bazar, Adamji Road, Bank Road, Kashmir Road, Hyder Road, Police Station Road, and the Cantonment General Hospital Road, along with their adjoining areas, have been causing accidents and negatively impacting the aesthetic appeal of the commercial area.


Published in The Express Tribune, January 1st, 2024


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