Surkhet, March 21
Locals of Birendranagar, the district headquarters of Surkhet, have been facing an acute shortage of water.
There has been a significant rise in the demand for drinking water in the headquarters due to rapidly growing urbanisation and migration of late.
As per the latest survey, a total of 12,700,000 litre water is required to meet the demand every day.
However, only 8,200,000 litre water is supplied during winter and 4,400,000 litre water is supplied during summer on a daily basis, as per Surkhet Valley Drinking Water Consumer’s Committee.
Chairperson of the committee Kulmani Devkota said locals of Birendranagar were facing an acute shortage of water as water sources were drying up due to the effects of climate change, while, on the other hand, population was growing rapidly.
Water supply project was managed from four different sources in 2002, estimating the population would reach 105,000 in 2020. But, the population growth has risen by 50,000 more than expected in five years.
While planning for the new settlement project in 2002, the population of the valley was 52,627 and water was supplied to the locals through 1,408 taps.
“The population has increased threefold since,” he said.
Lack of reservoir, rapid urbanisation, growing population, increased demand for water, drying up of water sources and leakage of water in the supply system have been blamed for water shortage.
After the prolonged water crisis, the consumers’ committee has launched initiatives to address the problem. “It has started preparing a detailed survey report to lift water from the Bheri River. Around 5,000,000 litre water can easily be supplied to the valley after the project is completed,” said Devkota.
Meanwhile, Karnali Province Minister for Physical Infrastructure Khadka Bahadur Khatri inspected the project site today.