Balkhu facing acute water shortage

- Anup Ojha, Kathmandu

Mar 26, 2015-

Locals of Balkhu are facing acute shortage of water after finding their water supply cut off for the past six months due to the ongoing road expansion work in the area.

Over 300 households living in areas such as Magar Gaun, Kantipur Colony and Gyan Khel are deprived of regular water supply  due to the Ring Road Expansion Project (RREP) that damaged the water supply pipes in the densely populated area.

Local residents said they have been forced to buy water from private water suppliers owing to the water shortage caused by damaged water pipes. Many old houses

in the area that do not have reserve tanks are suffering the most as they cannot even buy and store water for daily uses.

“We don’t have reserve tank installed in our houses.  And since this place is situated at a certain height than other low-lying places in Kathmandu, wells we dig up easily go dry,” said Batuk Rijal of Magar Tole, adding that his six member family alone needs 100 liters of water for daily uses.  

He said he has no option other than to spend Rs 1,000 every month to buy water

these days.  The Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited (KUKL) had been providing water in the area once a week for upto three hours.

The short supply of water has directly hit those living in rented rooms and apartments in the area as the house owners have increased the rent by Rs 500 to Rs 1000 in the form of extra charge to buy water for daily consumption from private water tankers.

Renuka Khatiwada, who has been living nearby Kantipur Colony for 10 years, is looking to shift from her current one-room apartment to another.

“My landlord has said that either I have to give an additional Rs 1000 for water or leave my apartment,” said Khatiwada, who has been paying Rs 4,500 for the one-room apartment.  

“I have been going to my relative’s place in Satdobato to take bath and wash my clothes. Sometimes I have to even borrow water to drink and prepare food. How long can I continue living like this? So I thought there is no option than shifting to another place where I hope there is no water scarcity,” said Khatiwada.

Shanghai Construction Group Company has taken the responsibility to construct the 10.9 km long, eight-lane road stretching from Kalanki to Koteshwor, for which China had granted Rs 547 million.

Published: 27-03-2015 14:17

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