Kailali villages face flood risk

- MOHAN BUDHAIR, DHANGADHI

Jul 2, 2018-

A dozen of villages are at high risk of flood due to haphazard extraction of sand and pebbles from Shivaganga River along with destruction of forest resources in the Chure region of Kailali district.

Settlements in Kuchauni, Dipnagar, Dumliya, Shantikatan, Urma and Karaighat, among others, of Gauriganga Municipality-3 are at high risk of flood. The river has been eroding Urma and Phulbari, among other settlements, of Dhangadhi Sub-metropolis every year.

“More than half the population of Kuchauni has been displaced due to soil erosion,” said Baburam Chaudhary, chairman of the River Embankment Consumer’s Committee. The river has been eroding around 5-6 hectares of land each year.

Bahadur Nepali, 64, a local man of Kuchauni, said the floods started to affect their settlement because of deforestation and rampant extraction of sand and gravels. The river, which was just 14-metre wide 40 years ago, has expanded to 400 metres in width, according to villagers. The number of families in Kunchauni area has dropped from around 700 to 150 families. Of them, 35 families are living in the area that are at high risk of floods. Bhagawati Singh, a social worker, said people dread as it starts raining in the Chure region.

Though the Water Induced Disaster Management Division Office in Kailali started building embankment along Shivaganga River to protect the settlements, the construction works could not be completed before monsoon due to shortage of budget, engineer Bishnu Dev Chaudhary said. The division office has been constructing the embankment with the limited budget amounting to Rs40 million. “We will complete the construction works by July-end,” said Chaudhary.

Published: 02-07-2018 07:36

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