Drinking water projects in Sudurpaschim left incomplete due to lack of budgetOver a hundred drinking water projects that were handed over by the federal government to the provincial government have not received additional budget.
Construction works on dozens of drinking water projects in Sudurpaschim Province have remained incomplete for the past decade. Mohan Kunwar, chief engineer at the Drinking Water and Sanitation Division Office in Dhangadhi, said works on most of the projects have been delayed due to a lack of budget.
“Over a dozen drinking water projects have been left incomplete. Large scale projects don’t get enough budget to continue with their work,” said Kunwar.
Over a hundred drinking water projects that were handed over by the federal government to the provincial government have not received additional budget.
“At this pace, the construction of these projects will take 20 more years,” said Kunwar.
The government's 15th plan to supply drinking water to 40 percent of the province’s population does not seem likely to happen, officials at the Drinking Water and Sanitation Division Office in Dhangadhi say.
According to the Office, drinking water projects in the province have not gained momentum due to limited budget allocation. Minister for Physical Infrastructures Pathan Singh Bohara blames the federal government for being negligent in overseeing the projects’ completion.
While the projects of the federal government have remained incomplete due to budget shortage, the provincial government has been initiating separate drinking water projects on its own.
“The provincial government has been adding new projects every year despite there being several incomplete projects on the pipeline,” said Kunwar, adding that the new projects of the provincial government also lack sufficient budget.
The data of the Drinking Water and Sanitation Division Office showed that out of 59 drinking water projects of the provincial government, 22 are new ones. But the total budget allocation for such projects is just Rs 230 million.
“Each of the projects costs Rs 50 to Rs 100 million. In the current fiscal year, only five to 10 percent of the total projects can move forward,” Kunwar said. “This is why these projects will also take more than a decade to complete.”