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Survey teams from Nepal, India inspect disputed Mahakali embankment



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By Gokarna Dayal, Darchula, Apr. 12: The embankment along the Mahakali River being constructed unilaterally by India has been inspected by the technical team of both, Nepal and India.

The District Administration Office, Darchula informed that the embankment under construction was inspected by the survey technician team of both nations.

The government had sent an inspection team to Darchula after concerns were raised everywhere from media platforms to the parliament regarding the construction of embankment in Nepal's land unilaterally by India in such a way that the direction of the Mahakali River would change.

Nepal's survey team led by Chief Survey Officer Jayananda Joshi is comprised of survey officers Kamal Shahi and Kapil Katuwal and surveyors Sahadesh Ghimire and Sundar Devkota.

Likewise, the Indian survey team led by DSS Maj Jatintar Singh consists of OS Mahesh Maheshwari, Anil Juyal, Dhiraj Singh and Dinesh Singh, informed Chief District Officer Jyotsana Bhatta Joshi.

It has been said that both the survey teams jointly inspected the embankment and discussions as to the way of construction, whether it affects Nepal or not and whether the construction is in line with the international boundary treaties were held.

"According to the survey teams, detailed information regarding the construction will be received after the teams return," said CDO Joshi.

Ignoring the letters sent by the District Administration Office to stop the construction of the embankment, which had kicked off without coordinating with Nepal, India had been taking the construction works forward. 

The government was also criticised in the parliament for not reacting to the construction of embankment by India by encroaching on Nepal's territory.

India has been constructing an embankment in Nepal's land in the Galfai area of Mahakali Municipality-5 in the district thereby affecting the flow of the river.

Due to the massive flood in Mahakali River in 2013, the River had changed its direction which made around 1000 Ropanis land of Galfai area including the building of forest office go across the river. Raghubir Thagunna, a local said that the embankment was being constructed in the same area.

Likewise, Deepak Badu, another local said, "The embankment being constructed by India has put the Nepali land across Mahakali River at risk."

The flood in 2013 had swept away one dozen government offices and 56 houses.

In 2014, India had stopped Nepal from constructing the embankment along the Mahakali River, requesting the government of Nepal to construct the embankment far from the River. Following India's request, the government had built the embankment 100 meters nearer to the river bank. However, India is currently constructing the embankment in the same area without coordinating with the Nepal government.

India had been constructing wooden bridges in various places over the Mahakali unilaterally without consulting with Nepal. "Due to the roads constructed by India at the border, the water level over Mahakali has been shrinking," said Badu. He added that encroachment of border and construction works being done unilaterally had posed risk to Nepali land.