Conservation ponds in Saptari boost water sources

RAJBIRAJ: Construction of conservation ponds through rainwater harvesting near Kanakpatti at the base of Chure hills in Saptari district has made water supply adequate in the region.

Rain water has been collected to build such ponds to facilitate irrigation in the region, which has boosted the underground water reserve to create adequate water supply in tube wells around the area. This, in turn, has made the area greener with expanding cultivation.

"Around twenty-two years ago, there was a huge scarcity of water around our settlement," said Mohammad Rasul of Kanakpatti in Shambhunath Municipality-2 of Saptari district. "There was an increasing problem of drinking water at the settlement as most of the tube wells had gone dry."

He stated that after three ponds were constructed with the support of GTZ in 2052 BS through rain water harvesting from Chure hills with the aim of facilitating irrigation during dry season, tube wells in nearby settlements started giving water.

As the water in the conservation ponds began to prove useful, locals have started planting mango trees around the area. To increase the water collection, additional conservation ponds are also under construction.

Chairperson of one of the conservation pond's consumers' committee, Tej Narayan Chaudhary, said that the construction process had reached its final phase. "The collected water has eased the process of irrigating paddy, wheat, maize farms and mango plantations."

Likewise, Chief of District Land Conservation Office, Bishnu Bahadur Bhandari, informed that the construction of conservation pond is being carried out with the joint investment of the office and contribution from the consumers' group. He said, "Such ponds are being constructed to preserve water sources and to conserve the Chure, which is being destroyed due to deforestation and landslides."

Ten more ponds have been constructed through consumers' committee throughout the district with the increase in utility of conservation ponds, according to the District Land Conservation Office, Saptari.