Collective campaign to check Kaligandaki encroachment


Balewa, Aug 15 : The district coordination committees (DCCs) of Baglung, Parbat, Myagdi, and Mustang districts in Dhaulagiri have stepped up a collective campaign to check rampant encroachment in the Kaligandaki River.    

In order to implement the apex court interim order to prevent the illegal extraction of pebbles, sands, and boulders from the river, the district coordination committees have charted out a shared plan to this effect.    

The Supreme Court came up with the interim order acting on a writ petition demanding a halt in the implementation of the Kaligandaki River Diversion Project. The apex court ordered the district coordination committees not to allow the continuation of any activities in the river.   

The district coordination committees took the initiative to implement the apex court order naming 40 institutions including the committees and local levels as defendants. 

A joint meeting hosted by the Baglung district coordination committee decided to put collective efforts to check the unlawful extraction and sale of river-based materials of Kaligandaki.    

"It was impossible to stop encroachment propping up in the Kaligandaki River alone. So, we are mooting to place joint efforts to that end", shared DCC Parbat Chair Bishnuram BK.    

In the meeting, DCC Baglung Chair Amar Bahadur Thapa said, "It is our responsibility to preserve and utilize the river-based products. We are stick to regulate the extraction of river materials in a way that it would not affect the natural structure and status of the river".    

Several constraints including legal mandate have surfaced in booking those involved in Kaligandaki encroachment, he said the DCC's role is limited to carrying out monitoring functions which limits the mechanism to check illegal extraction of river products.   

The meeting has decided to request the Gandaki Province to swiftly introduce a law in this regard.

The joint meeting also decided to draw the attention of the authorities concerned about the construction of an embankment to protect vulnerable populations residing nearby the Kaligandaki Watershed Area in Manang and Mustang. (RSS)

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