Flood-threatened Sarlahi villagers say temporary embankment will not stave off bank erosionRain-swollen Bagmati river has already eroded hundreds of bighas of farmlands, locals say.
Barhathawa Mayor Devanada Mahato said that the rain-swollen river has been continuously eroding the river banks and that temporary embankment may not be able to hold the river any longer.
Ratna Bahadur Giri, ward chairman of Barhathawa, said that ward numbers 1, 3, 14 and 15 of the municipality, including dozens of settlements of Basbariya and Ramnagar rural municipalities, face the threat of possible inundation.
With possible inundation looming large and the concerned authorities only finding ‘temporary’ solutions, locals find themselves at a loss.
“We had requested the Water Induced Disaster Prevention Office to take measures to control bank erosion but they paid no heed to us. Now the river is expanding its reach and the solution they have come up with is not going to help,” said Giri.
In the last month alone, hundreds of bighas of farmlands, where farmers had cultivated paddy, sugarcane, turmeric and bananas, were eroded by the river. The area was inspected by a team of government officials on Wednesday evening. After the inspection, the team has decided to call a technical team from the Water Induced Disaster Prevention Office to return the course of the river in its original place.
Chief District Officer Mohan Bahadur GC admitted that the temporary embankment cannot minimise flooding threat in the area.
“The technical team will suggest a permanent solution to this problem,” said GC.