‘Bagmati River to be sewage-free by 2020’

Kathmandu, June 5

The government has set a target of making the Bagmati River sewage-free by 2020.

According to Department of Water Supply and Sewerage, both sides of the Bagmati River will be joining with the main sewage and that will prevent drainage from mixing into the river.

One upgrading waste water treatment plant in Guheshwori and three new treatment plants in Sallaghari Bhaktapur, Kodku in Balkumari and Dhobighat in Lalitpur will be functioning within two-and-a-half years.

Director General of the department Tej Raj Bhatta said besides these four, one more treatment plant will be established for the purification of water in Khokana of Lalitpur.

“All those treatment plants are to stop sewers from directly mixing into the Bagmati River. These treatment plants first receive the collected sewerage from the main sewage and then lets it into the Bagmati only after treatment,” Director General Bhatta said.

He claimed that within 2020, all treatment plants would start functioning and no pollutant would be mixed into the Bagmati River.  Project Implementation Directorate of

Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited will be responsible for construction of the treatment plants and their upgrade, Asian Development bank is providing loan assistance for the project.

“We will make the  Bagmati River system sewage-free by 2020 by running all the treatment plants in various places and these plants will also be designed after estimating the post-Melamchi scenario.” DG Bhatta added further.

A total of 102.7 billion litres waste water will be treated per day through the three new and existing one treatment plants. Among them Sallaghari, Kodku, Dhobighat and Guheshwori based treatment plants will have the capacity of processing 14.2 million litres per day (MLD), 17.5 MLD, 37 MLD and 34 MLD respectively.

Indian company VA Tech Wabag Ltd of Chennai India has already bagged the contract for maintenance and adding new units at treatment plant in Guheshwori through the bidding process, and the company started work a year ago.

Similarly, construction work for three new treatment plants has been given to Shanghai SafBon Water Services Co. Ltd through bidding. Both parties signed the construction contract on January 26  this year.

The ongoing Bagmati cleaning campaign, in its 212th week, has collected more than 8,000 metric tonnes solid waste from the river so far. 740,000 people have joined the cleaning campaign till date.

Besides, occasional voluntary gathering, there is also a core team of around 50 volunteers who have been cleaning the river every Saturday.

The campaign was launched on 19 May 2013.  The concept was generated six months earlier when five main organisations held a meeting and realised that cleaning the Bagmati was a major project that had to be under taken by the citizens themselves. There are more than 140 groups that have been working for the Bagmati Cleaning Project.