Pyuthan building water reservoirs to recharge natural water sources
April 4, 2019 02:30 AM NPT
Sumsher Bikram KC/Republica Completed and under-construction water reservoirs in Pyuthan in these recent pictures.
PYUTHAN, April 4: Considering the escalation seen in the drying of water resources, local bodies and the provincial government have increased investments in preserving water sources by building artificial ponds. These bodies have earmarked a special budget for such projects.
“Due to massive environmental destruction in the last few years, natural water resources have been drying up very fast. We need to recharge the earth again and fo that we need to build artificial water storages,” said Hari Poudel, a forest ranger at the Division Forest Office of the district. “Every local body has been provided with a budget of Rs 400,000 for building such ponds under the special campaign – One Village, One Pond,” he added.
As part of the One Village, One Pond campaign, local bodies would be building standard size pond in every village or town. These ponds are expected to ensure water availability along with enhancing the natural beauty of the surrounding.
As part of the One Village, One Pond campaign, local bodies would be building standard size pond in every village or town. These ponds are expected to ensure water availability along with enhancing the natural beauty of the surrounding, according to Poudel.
“In the past, such artificial ponds existed in this area. If you try to trace those ponds nowadays, they hardly look like ponds. In the lack of conservation, ponds disappeared from this region. It is time for us to bring them back to our villages and town,” Poudel said.
A total of nine water ponds, one each in the district's nine local bodies, are being constructed. For this, a budget of Rs 3.6 million has been released. “There are nine local bodies. Each of them will be building one pond in their locality for Rs 400,000. The total budget of this project is Rs 3.6 million,” Poudel informed.
In the hills, it is not easy to collect and store water. To ensure proper water storage, technical parts of the pond is being overseen by technicians. “If ponds are built without considering the location or technical aspects, they might not serve the purpose. So, technicians have selection pond locations after thoroughly studying all the proposed pond locations,” said Poudel.
A considerable number of the district's residents depend on agriculture. In lack of modern tools and techniques, farmers still depend on traditional farming methods. They have been demanding irrigation facility for a long time.
“Due to the lack of irrigation facility, the yield of our farms is severely affected. Farmers are not happy that they have to depend on rainwater solely for irrigation. There were a few ponds in the region in the past, but they would not be sufficient for irrigation,” said Poudel. “So this time, we are constructing ponds by considering the interests of the farmers as well,” he added.
According to Poudel, since it is the policy of the local and provincial government to conserve low land, lakes and jungles, there are many other programs and projects underway in these areas.
“The goal is to recharge the land with water. We cannot bring back the lost jungles overnight or undo other kinds of natural destructions. However, several works are undergoing to conserve our low lands, lakes and greenery,” he said. “Local and provincial governments are seriously working in these areas,” he added.
Some of the local bodies have even added budget from their own resource for building the ponds. According to Netra Bahadur Rokaya, mayor of Swargadwari Municipality, the amount provided by the government is not enough as there are too many wards in his area. “So, we have added to the budget. We are going to build water ponds in all the wards,” he said. “There are few ponds which need repair, so we will need even more budget to repair them,” he added.
Rokaya stated that the municipality itself had allocated Rs 900,000 last year for the ponds. In the current fiscal year, the office has allocated Rs 630,000. “We have added this amount and could add from our own budget if we need more then what is provided to us,” he said.
His municipality is not going to use heavy equipment to build the water ponds. Rokaya said that locals would participate in the construction and they will use traditional tools to build the reservoirs.
“That way, they will have a sense of ownership and will be inclined to protect it in future. On the other hand, they get employment,” Rokaya explained.
The municipality is building ponds at Tikhachuli, Adebas, Saunepani, Dadagaun, Namrikot and Bhringkot areas. “We are planning to develop garden around those ponds. That will make it look very fresh and beautiful,” he said.
Shobharam Rijal, chief administrative officer at the Malla Rani Rural Municipality informed that two ponds are being built in the rural municipality. “Though we have been provided just Rs 400.000 which does not suffice for even one pond, we are building ponds at two places now. We allocated budget from our internal resources to build these ponds” he said. He added that plans for building an additional eight other ponds in the rural municipality are presently under consideration.