By Tara Chapagain, Kaski, Mar.5: Gandaki Province Government, in coordination with Pokhara Metropolitan City and other offices, has started removing soil, stones, ballast, sand and other items from the Fewa Lake, aiming to increase the depth of the lake.
Ram Kaji Shrestha, head of the Environment and Biodiversity Division under the Ministry of Forest and Environment and coordinator of the Waste Management Committee, informed that work towards deepening and beautifying the lake had started.
According to Shrestha, they are going to remove 15,000 cubic meters of soil at a cost Rs. 13.3 million. "It costs far less to remove the soil using machines than deploying manual laborers. We are using machines in most of the areas but it is not possible to take the machine to all places,” he said, informing that the extracted soil would be used to fill the holes in Basundhara Park and Komagane Park in Pokhara.
"As the lake has to be dried, the work should be completed within a month, but we lack sufficient budget at the moment. The cleaning process has been started with the hope of getting money from the ministry, metropolis and other concerned authorities,” he informed.
Minister for Industry, Tourism, Forests and Environment of Gandaki Province, Bikas Lamsal, said that significant work has been started by the joint efforts of both provincial and local governments. He added that the lake was being cleaned in a transparent manner with the participation of the people.
"Noble work has started. I myself has been monitoring the lake every morning. We are going to make this place a piece of heaven," he said.
29 small rivers flow directly into Fewa Lake. Stating that efforts are being made towards managing the garbage coming from those rivers, he expressed his view that everyone should help in reducing the garbage.
The waste management committee has representatives from Pokhara Metropolitan Office, Lake Conservation and Development Authority, Water Resources and Irrigation Development Division Office, Division Forest Office, Comprehensive Watershed Management Office Center, Watershed Management Conservation Office, Land and Watershed Management Office, Tanahun.