August 17: The Punatsangchu Hydro Power Project is already beginning to have a positive effect. With the commencement of the project, business is booming in the area.
On the downside, rent and price of commodities have almost doubled.
There was a time when most of the houses in Mesina remained empty. The rent was low. This has changed now with the Punatsangchu Hydro Power Project.
Project officials are having a difficult time finding a house. There are over 2,000 people working with the project. The supply of house is far short of the demand. With the demand increasing, the rent is literally shooting through the roof.
The housing crunch is expected to be solved once the Bajothang town development is over. The project will also be constructing staff quarters.
It has also had a similar effect on the price of vegetables. A bunch of spinach used to cost Nu. five. Now you cannot get it for less than Nu. 10.
Old residents blame the project. The project however denies this.
The project also hires vehicles from residents. Pema Sithub’s Toyota hilux has been hired by the project for six months now. He earns at least Nu. 20,000 in a month.
Giving a vehicle on hire for the contractor is not the same as giving it on hire to the project.
The Punatsangchu Hydropower Projects is already turning the placid Punakha into a boom town.