Kankai River breaches its embankment in various places of JhapaThe floodwaters of the river have put around 2,000 households at risk of inundation.
On Thursday night, Kankai River breached its embankment at Raigaun in Jhapa Rural Municipality Ward No. 7. The rain-swollen river damaged around 350 metres of the embankment and changed its course towards Kankai settlement.
On Sunday night, the river had damaged its embankment at Sadakbari in Ward No. 2 of the same rural municipality. More than 100 houses were inundated and 1,000 bighas of paddy fields were damaged by flood waters in Sadakbari and Milanbasti.
“More than half the total area of the rural municipality is at high risk of soil erosion and inundation after the floodwaters breached the embankment in Raigaun,” said the rural municipality Chairman Jaya Narayan Sah. “Ward Nos. 1, 2, 3 and 7 will be waterlogged if floodwaters enter Raigaun settlement.”
Around 1,650 houses in various parts of the local unit in Jhapa are at risk of inundation. “Over 4,000 bighas of paddy fields will be damaged if flood waters enter Raigaun settlement,” said Sah.
Hari Narayan Rajbanshi, a resident of Sadakbari, says four bighas of his paddy field have been inundated by flood waters.
“We have been facing this problem for a long time. The only thing that will save us from this yearly disaster is the construction of a permanent embankment,” he said. “The old embankment is built of stones and mud and is structurally weak.”
Kailash Shrestha, chief at the office of the People’s Embankment Programme in Gainde, Jhapa, said that although his office had been trying to protect the embankment at Raigaun for the past week, their efforts were futile.
“We tried to change the course of the river by constructing a temporary embankment but we were not successful,” Shrestha said.
Raigaun covers a 4.2 km embankment along the Kankai River.
Rinje Gurung, engineer at the office, said, “This year, the course of the river is directed towards the embankment, leading to its erosion.”
Although the water level in Kankai has receded in the past few days, the locals in the area are far from relieved.
Sukalal Kisku, a resident of Milanbasti, said, “The poor state of the old embankment in Raigaun puts us all at risk of flooding. The river is continuously eroding the embankment.”
The flooded river has also eroded 300 metres of its embankment in Kachchudaha, Ward No. 7 of Jhapa Rural Municipality, and 60 metres at Bhelmuni in Shiva Shatakshi Municipality Ward No. 5.
According to Shrestha, locals and security personnel from Nepal Army and Armed Police Force are working together to prevent the embankment from collapsing.
Meanwhile, the Biring River in Jhapa has also been eroding its embankment in Motapani, Chakchaki and Chaudhary Gaun for the past few days. According to the office of the People’s Embankment Programme, the flooded Ratuwa, Mawa, and Kamal rivers have also breached their embankments and pose a risk to various settlements in Jhapa.