Delay in embankment repair stokes flood fear

- Dev Narayan Sah, MORANG

Jul 24, 2017-

People of Jayanagar area in Pathari Shanishchare Municipality-5, Morang, are in constant fear of their homes getting flooded because of delay in completion of repair works of an embankment along the Bakraha river. 

Himal and Nikita JV, a Sunsari-based construction company, has not finished repairing the embankment that was breached by the river last year, said Jog Bahadur Dhimal, ward chairman of Pathari Shanishchare-5. 

“A temporary embankment built to keep off the floodwaters has already been breached twice this year. We have fixed the breach points for now,” he said.

According to the contract, the firm was supposed to complete the embankment before mid-July. The rain-swollen Bakraha had breached a 450-metre section of the embankment in July last year. More than 100 hectares of farmland was flooded and around 20,000 families were affected by the disaster.

“We don’t know how long the temporary embankment is going to withstand. There has not been a major flood in the river so far this year. The river will certainly breach the embankment if there is a flood like last year,” said Pratap Tamang, a local.

The Water-induced Disaster Prevention Division Office, the local administration and the flood victims have urged Himal and Nikita JV to complete the project as early possible.

People living close to the embankment say they have not seen the contractor for some time now and the authorities do not seem to care. 

Dev Narayan Sah, chief at the Biratnagar-based Water-induced Disaster Prevention Division Office, said his office was aware of the delay in the project. 

The contractor will be held accountable if the embankment is breached, he added.

“About a dozen settlements will be affected if the embankment construction is not completed soon.”

Published: 24-07-2017 08:43

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