Load-shedding adds to water woes of Lalitpur folk

Lalitpur, February 25:

People of Lalitpur district have been reeling under an acute shortage of water due to eight-hour-a-day load-shedding.

The Lalitpur section of the Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited (KUKL) said due to load-shedding, it has been unable to pump water from traditional wells and springs and collect them in reservoirs. This has caused a shortage of water in Lalitpur district.

The section has been supplying water to Lalitpur denizens from Chapagaun and Pharping reservoirs. Besides spring water, it pumps water to reservoirs from wells. About 2.5 million litres water is collected from the wells in Pharping, Balkumari, Jwagal and Chapagaun.

“Collection of water from these wells has gone down by 25 per cent due to the eight-hour load-shedding,” said Shiva Raj Pathak, office chief at the Lalitpur section of the KUKL. The NWSC has been supplying 275 million litres of water a day while the Lalitpur people require about 500 million litres of water daily. Water is supplied from 3 am in the morning to 10 pm in the evening. It is supplied for one to three hours in each area once a day. People, especially those whose houses are located on high grounds, draw water by using pumps.

Water woes multiply when load-shedding hours coincide with the KUKL’s water supply schedule. “Sometimes, we get water supplied for 15 minutes only,” said Buddha Thapa, a resident of Bagdole. People whose houses are located on higher ground need to use motors to pump water. Load-shedding affects these people the most. “We go to stone spouts to fetch water,” said Bishnu Sharma, a resident of Ekantakuna.

Water spouts are crowded these days. People stand in serpentine queues for hours to fetch water. Quarrels break out when people bring too many buckets with them or try to bypass the queue to fetch water. “If we let them fill all their buckets, we will not be able to get water at the end of the day,” said a woman at Shovahiti.