Floods, rain threaten Tatopani Bazaar

MYAGDI: The torrential downpour that has continued since couple of days, is threatening to sweep the picturesque town and the commercial hub- Singa Tatopani Bazaar, conservationists warned here today. The town, which is also the tourist hotspot, is threatened by two rivers already flowing to their brim.

The water level in Myagdi and Machar rivers is about to cross over the red line, Min Bahadur Baniya, secretary , Tatopani Bazaar Conservation Committee, said here today.

"If that happens, at least 60 households will be displaced", he warned.

What is even more worrisome is that the linking bridge that connects Baranja VDC and Tatopani Bazaar, a flourishing commercial town, close to the Chinese border, has already been swept away by the river.

Thus far, the committee had relocated four households to a safer location, but scores of others are still huddled in their houses, waiting for a help.

The flash floods has also destroyed Sarawasti Primary School and a sub-health post in the town.

The famous hot water spout at the Tatopani Kunda has been hit by gushing flood and mud, a member of the Tatopani Kunda Management Committee, Agendra KC, informed.

“Tourists visiting the area have also been stranded by the heavy rainfall,” he added.

Police inspector Lokendra Bahadur Malla said at the district police office, said locals were shifting to safer places, following the havoc caused by rain and flood.

Malla warns that the rivers might anytime enter the human settlement, should the downpour continues to rage.

The landslides could potentially bury at least seven houses of Bhamkila VDC-9, which are in immediate danger, he warned. Worse, the flood has washed off the footpaths and trail roads, which could block the only escape route for the locals, in an unforeseeable situation.

Similarly, locals of Bhamkili VDC-9 were facing untold hardships as they mounted uphill to find safer locations through the slippery roads.

Schools and hospitals remained shutdown as traffic came to a complete standstill. In some places, passengers were stranded. Pokhara-Jomsom air service remained shut, too.

“I have been stranded due to the rainfall,” said tourism entrepreneur Khagendra Tulachan.

Among those affected were pilgrims heading for Muktinath. Tourists in Mustang airport were stranded, too, after the disruption of the air service.

Local Indra Tulachan informed that normal life of Kagbeni, Muktinath, Jomsom, Tukuche including other places have been thrown out of gear, as nature unleashes its fury.