NEPALGUNJ, June 30: Sikta Irrigation Project in Banke district has been receiving hundreds of millions of rupees from the government every year. Despite the allocation of such massive budget for the national pride project, locals accuse the government of not monitoring the project's progress.
According to locals, the collapse of the project's main canal in Mahadevpuri-5 on Tuesday was the result of contractor's fraudulent activities. They accused the contractor of using substandard construction materials resulting in its weak structures. Kalika CTCE JB was awarded the contract to build the main canal.
One of the engineers of the project, under the condition of anonymity, said weak structures had led to the collapse of the main canal. “Many structures of the project are weak, possibly due to the use of inferior construction materials. That's why a section of the main canal collapsed during the test run,” said the engineer.
The contractor has hired many consultancy companies over the course of time to make the process easier.
Project Director Saroj Pandit said Kalika the contractor will bear all the responsibilities of the collapse and start reconstructing it.
“Weakness in the main canal was discovered before Kalika CTCE JB handed it over to us. They will reconstruct it. However, it is normal to find weakness during trial run,” he said.
According to him, the collapse could have severe consequences had the rising level of river water not been diverted timely to Paruwa River in Shamsergunj.