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Bajaur to have solar streetlights soon

The development under the Tribal Areas Rural to Urban Centres Conversion Initiative (Tarucci) might have been slow due to various reasons but the authorities claim that Khar, the headquarters of Bajaur Agency, is going to be lit with solar streetlights soon under the said project.

“Solar streetlights in Khar’s main bazaar and agency headquarters hospital would be installed within two or three months. Work on installation of the streetlights has already been started,” project director Omar Khan told Dawn. He added that about 450 solar streetlights approved under the project would cost about $1 million.

The official said that after installation of the streetlights the traders would be able to keep their shops open till late in the evening as peace was restored in Khar.

The traders had guaranteed that they would make sure no one damaged the lights, he added.

“The solar streetlights would be a boon for the local traders, who can hardly keep their businesses open owing to prolonged power loadshedding in the evening,” said Ahsanullah, a shopkeeper at Khar Bazaar.

It would definitely help the businessmen, he said, adding that about four solar lights were already installed by Fata Development Authority in a bazaar that brought about a positive change as people came out at night.

The shopkeeper said that people in Khar hardly got any light owing to severe power crisis during summer. It would have been better if water supplying machines or tubewells were also run on solar energy to solve water supply issue in the area, he added.

Under the multi-donor trust funded Tarucci, about $7 million would be spent to set up urban centre at Khar to improve access of tribal people to better facilities.

The project was formally launched in June 2012 but the last eight months were spent in planning. Khar is supposed to be turned into an urban hub over a period of three years after the execution of the project.

“We have made a plan for the next 20 years for Khar and planning is time consu

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