Water supply along country’s largest canal in Saptari halted

Rajbiraj, January 11

Wheat farmers of more than two dozen VDCs have been hit hard after water supply along the country’s largest canal Chandra was halted in Saptari.

Farmers of Fattepur, Odraha, Kamalpur, Ghoghanpur, Dharampur, Badgama, Rupanpur, Jagatpur, Kanchanpur, Bhardah, Portaha, Mainakaderi and other VDCs of the district have not been able to start cultivating wheat this season due to the problem with the irrigation canal.

According to Bhagirath Yadav, chief at the District Agriculture Development Office, although it was estimated that wheat would be cultivated in 31,000 hectare land in the district, more than 25,000 hectare land is barren due to lack of water supply from the canal.

“We were preparing to sow wheat in our fields, but stopped after learning that water supply from the canal would stop,” said local farmer of Pakari Dev Ram Yadav. Farmers of Mainakaderi said that they will not incur huge losses due to this situation.

Prashun Mishra, chief of the Koshi Pump Chandra Canal Irrigation Management Division Office, said that they had stopped the supply of water in order to clean 14 kilometres of the canal, and carry out some maintenance work one-and-a-half months ago. “It was extremely important to carry out the maintenance work because the canal was in dire need of it,” said Mishra. The work, it is said, will be completed in two years.

“The water flow was recorded at 11,000 cusec when the project was new, but it had been in great disrepair,” said Mishra. He pledged to resume water supply by the next planting season.