Saturday, July 17, 2021

Chinese company stops work on Dasu project after bus incident

Dasu Dam project director has confirmed that the CGGC has stopped work, which will resume when the security situation improves

A board showing the site of Dasu Hydro Power Project. File photo
A board showing the site of Dasu Hydro Power Project. File photo

  • Chinese firm suspends operations at Dasu Hydropower Project.
  • Nine Chinese nationals were killed in a bus incident on July 14.
  • Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed says probe is in final stages.

PESHAWAR: The Chinese firm working on the Dasu Hydropower Project has stopped work on the site citing “security concerns” and laid off all but the most essential Pakistani workers, Geo News has reported.

According to the TV report, the China Gezhouba Group Company (CGGC) has intimated through a letter that due to the July 14 bus incident in which nine Chinese nationals were killed, the company cannot continue operations on the project.

The CGGC stated that the laid off Pakistani employees will be paid salary and gratuity as per their contract.

Project Director Anwarul Haq has confirmed that the Chinese firm has stopped work on the project, adding that it will restart work as soon as the security situation improves.

At least 12 people, including nine Chinese nationals working on the project were killed when a bus carrying them fell into a ravine following an explosion.

The federal government has launched an investigation into the tragic incident and a 15-member Chinese security team has also been involved in the probe.

Probe in final stages

Meanwhile, Federal Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed has said that the probe into Dasu incident is in its final stages and will be completed soon.

Rasheed said that he has directed security agencies to further improve the security of Chinese nationals.

Briefing the media in Islamabad, the interior minister said that 15 Chinese officials have arrived in Pakistan for the investigation and the Chinese interior minister has also spoken to him about the Dasu accident.

Rasheed said the accident took place on the Karakoram Highway, adding that the injured are being treated at the Pakistan Army Hospital.

"It is our duty to protect the lives and property of the Chinese people here. The security of their people will be ensured," Rasheed said, sharing that the Chinese Ministry of Interior has been taken on board.

He said that the premier has asked him and Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi to go to China.

The interior minister emphasised that Pak-China friendship is eternal and the accident does not impact this friendship. The enemies of CPEC and Pakistan and China's friendship will not be forgiven, he said.