Work on the under-construction Centaurus complex in Islamabad might just speed up after progress was made last week on a power grid station required for the project.
Plan to build the grid station was in a limbo because of the non-payment of dues by Pak Gulf Construction, the real-estate developer behind Centaurus. But a meeting at the Capital Development Authority (CDA) head office this week reached the decision that the Centaurus management will transfer the funds required to a new, separate bank account, CDA spokesperson Masoodur Rehman told The Express Tribune.
“The funds will be picked up directly by the Islamabad Electric Supply Company (IESCO) from this account,” he added.
The meeting was chaired by CDA Chairman Farkhand Iqbal and attended by IESCO Chief Engineer Riaz Ali Shah, representatives of the Centaurus project as well as Board of Investment Chairman Saleem Mandviwala, who apparently helped resolve the tiff between the civic agency and the Centaurus management.
Rehman said plans for the grid station, which will cost Rs360 million, were part of the original agreement between the CDA and Pak Gulf Construction.
“It is not feasible to derive the electricity required for the Centaurus from existing sectors,” Rehman said. “The grid will mainly bear the power needs of Centaurus.”
CDA has already allocated 10 kanals for the grid station near F-9 Park, he said.
At the meeting, IESCO Chief Engineer Riaz Ali Shah said Rs200 million were required up front to procure equipment for the grid station.
The remaining Rs160 million will be paid to IESCO in two instalments after the progress of work is assessed, the stakeholders decided in the meeting.
In a press briefing earlier in September, CDA Chairman Iqbal had said Centaurus still owes the CDA nearly Rs2 billion. A source close to the issue said the Centaurus management did not want to give the grid station funds directly to the CDA because they thought CDA might use them for its own needs rather than developing the grid station.
Major (retd) Shahid at the project’s head office refused to comment on the story.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 1st, 2012.
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