Dehradun: Uttarakhand Power Corporation Limited (UPCL), the sole state-run electricity distribution company, has awarded a Rs 388 crore contract for underground cabling at Haridwar to Vindhya Telelinks Ltd, an M. P. Birla group company.

With this, Haridwar is all set to become Uttarakhand's first city where power lines will go underground by 2021.

"After finalising the tendering process, we have awarded the contract for underground cabling at Haridwar to Vindhya Telelinks Ltd," said B C K Mishra, UPCL Managing Director, here.

Mishra said the work on the project under the central government-sponsored Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS) will begin after May 23 when the election process in the country will be completed.

"We are hopeful that the project will be completed before the commencement of the Kumbh Mela in 2021," said Mishra. The whole of the Kumbh area in Haridwar encompassing 26 sq kms will be covered through the underground cable lines.

Haridwar is the second city, after Kashi in Uttar Pradesh, where the underground cable project is being implemented. "After Kashi, Haridwar will become the second city in India where the power lines will go underground," Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat said.

After Haridwar, the focus will be on Dehradun where the UPCL is also planning to implement a similar underground cable project shortly. A detailed project report (DPR) has already been sent to the central government for approval of that project.