India to build Mahakali main canal

- RASTRIYA SAMACHAR SAMITI, Bhimduttanagar

Sep 1, 2018-

India has taken the lead to construct the main canal of Mahakali Irrigation Project after 22 years of the existence of Nepal-India Integrated Mahakali Treaty.

The Treaty mandates integrated development of Mahakali River, the boundary river between Nepal and India. The Pancheshwor Project under the Treaty expects to generate 6,000 Mega watt of electricity.

India is constructing the head regulator of the 1200-metre long and 13.60-metre wide canal from Tanakpur Barrage to Matena, Bhimduttanagar Municipa-lity-9 in Kanchanpur district.

The NHPC, hydroelectric power generation company based in India, on August 1 this year had opened a tender for the construction of the main canal and the head regulator, according to the Mahakali Irrigation Project Third Phase Office’s Senior Divisional Engineer (CDE), Bir Singh Dhami.

“India has issued a tender notice that the canal should be built within 18 months starting from December this year,” he said.

According to him, India has informed Nepal about the latest development concerning the project and the construction of the main canal.

The Treaty clearly stipulates the “Cost of the Project shall be borne by the Parties in proportion to the benefits accruing to them,” it also states about the construction of the main canal.

India has informed the Mahakali Irrigation Project Third Phase Office it would accelerate the construction of the main canal and the head regulator.

The first meeting of the Nepal-India Joint Committee on Water Resources (JCWR) discussed issues about the construction of the main canal in 2000, but there was no further progress.

Dhami said Nepal and India disagreed on the seal level of the head regulator. Iit took 11 years to reach an agreement.

According to him, the sixth and the seventh JCWR meetings in 2011 and 2013 respectively reached a decision to provide Nepal water from the 244.25 metre sea level.

The Government of Nepal has already constructed 13,000 metres of canal so far.

Contract winner companies are in the initial phase of constructing the 15 kms main canal in the three packages, said Dhami. The main canal’s contract is signed for Rs 2.1 billion. The land spread over 35 hectares is in the process of acquisition.

The canal would irrigate around 33,520 hectare arable lands, stretching from Malakheti in Kailali and all arable land in Kanchanpur.

Published: 01-09-2018 07:27

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