Laborers busy collecting sand from Trishuli river in this recent photo – Sarita Shrestha
DHADING, Aug 4 : There are dozens of crusher factories along the bank of the Trishuli river. Even the smaller rivers around are not devoid of such factories that operate almost round the clock. According to locals, collection of sand and stones from rivers did not stop even during the period of lockdown. Instead, ‘these illegal activities’ went rampant and this is sure to trigger serious environmental hazards in the long run.
The local administration has apparently awakened to the warning. Talking to Republica, chief district officer (CDO) of Dhading, Asman Tamang said that sand extraction from the Trishuli and smaller rivers around has been banned. “The shape, size, form of our rivers have changed over the time. If we are to save rivers, we have to act wisely,” he said on Tuesday. “We have collection of sand for now until we issue next notice, we received enough complaints,” he added.
According to CDO Tamang, the administration had monitored Trishuli, Jinte, Dargauda, Malekhu, Thopal and Ashu rivers, among others, before announcing the restriction recently. Locals had been quite vocal about the worsening conditions of the rivers. Strict action will be taken against whoever refuses to abide by the new guidelines, he warned.
Many laborers have even lost their lives while working for the builder factories. Swelling rivers have claimed lives, as they are forced to work in the risky rivers, CDO Tamang further said. “The factories use both machines and humans. Manual labor has cost lives, rivers have swept laborers away. This is inhumane,” he stated.