GORKHA, April 18: Construction of Palungtar Kundurtar Irrigation Project has resumed after a gap of 14 years. Construction of the canal, which can irrigate around 500 hectors of land had started in 2002 but was grounded the same year.
“Construction of the irrigation project has resumed. The contractor has already started working,” said Dev Narayan Shah, chief of Palungtar Kundurtar Irrigation Project. “It is expected to benefit the locals of several wards of Gorkha Municipality.”
According to Shah, the estimated budget for the project is Rs 500 million. Though Rs 30 million was allocated for the project this year, the contractor agreed to work for Rs 26.6 million. Next year, the government plans to allocate Rs 40 million. While the total length of the canal is 773 meters, just eight meters was constructed in 2002.
“This was a very old project, but it did not receive due attention. Though it was neglected in the past, we are going to expedite its construction,” Shah said.
In its initial project cost assessment, the estimated budget for the project was around Rs 50 million. Owing to inflation and other factors the estimated budget was expected to more than that. “It might have been completed within the budget if its construction was not obstructed at the time. We expect the cost to increase,” Shah said.
In lack of irrigation facility, lands of Chhewetaar, Kundutar and Dashkilo, among other areas have been left barren. Some have done livestock and poultry farming in these areas.
“Once the canal comes into operation, we expect the farmers to start using arable lands for vegetable and crop farming,” says the Mayor of Gorkha Municipality, Rajan Raj Panta.