By Our Correspondent Siddharthanagar, May 15: It has become a tradition for the people of Butwal to drink dirty water during the monsoon.
Even though the leaders of big and small parties have been making water supply their main election slogans in all the elections since 2052 BS, the problem of clean water supply in Butwal has remained the same over the years.
With the onset of summer, there is very little running water in Dipnagar, Sukhkhanagar, Batauli, Belbas and other areas of Butwal. When it rains, turbid water comes in the same pipelines.
In Butwal, which is becoming the business centre of western Nepal, common people have not been able to get clean drinking water as the people's representatives have been more concerned to their own service facilities after winning the election.
Poonam Rajali of Sukhkhanagar has complained that her days are being spent in a hope to get sufficient water.
She said that the people have to manage water by buying from tankers in summer. Butwal residents have been facing such problems for two decades now.
According to Water Supply Corporation Butwal, there is a daily demand of 33.2 million litres of water in the sub-metropolitan city. But the distribution is only 24 million litres.
To resolve the water supply crisis, Sisne Drinking Water Project was started 26 years ago. The project was started about two-and-a-half decades ago to bring 700,000 liters of water daily from Sisne Khola in Jhumsa of Palpa district.
But a decade after the start of the project, source of water was changed assuming that the water of Sisne wouldn't meet the demand of the city with a plan to bring 32 million litres of water daily from Phirphire Ghat of Jhumsa Khola in the present Tinau Village Municipality-3 and 4, instead of Sisne.
Millions of rupees have been spent on this project. But so far, only 4.16 per cent of the total project work has been completed.
The dam built at the water source of this project a decade ago was flooded six years ago. Similarly, due to poor design and technical aspects of the dam construction, the dam built near Ghorbandighat was destroyed by floods six years ago.
The last contract agreement was signed two years ago. Deputy Chief of the project Mandip Shrestha said that the construction work of the dam has been completed at a cost of Rs. 110 million.
Another contract was signed in June 2020 for the pipeline from the dam site to Ramphedi in Butwal. Only 60 per cent of the project worth Rs. 140 million has been completed. Under which 6 km of pipe has been laid.
Work on the remaining 5 kilometres of the pipeline has been halted. According to the project, work was halted due to lack of permission to lay pipes on the main road in Jhumsa-Dobhan section. The laid pipes are of 20- and 10-inch size.
Preparations are underway to extend the contract as it is certain that the project will not be completed on time. The water of Jhumsa will be brought and poured in to an overhead tank in Ramphedi.
Likewise, six overhead tanks will be constructed in Butwal – three each at the sides of the Tinau River.