Floods cause displacement in Kanchanpur and KailaliFamilies in Kanchanpur who fled their waterlogged homes on Tuesday night have not been able to return as floodwaters have not receded yet.
Families displaced by a flood on Tuesday in Purnabas Municipality-5 still haven’t been able to return home. A massive flooding of the local Dodi River Tuesday night inundated Simari and Ratotaal areas in the municipality displacing 35 families. According to the chairman of ward 5, Padam Bahadur Rokaya, the displaced are taking shelter at their relatives’ homes.
“Although the water level has decreased, the settlement still remains inundated,” said Rokaya. “Water has seeped into homes destroying food grain and furniture among other things rendering them inhabitable.”
The ward office has made arrangements for free meals for the displaced, informed Rokaya.
Simari village, mostly populated by people from the Rana Tharu community, suffers from inundation every monsoon. Since most of the houses are made of wood and mud, the water seepage has increased the danger of the houses giving way, said Rokaya.
A section of the Postal Highway passes through the village. According to the locals, the road is elevated from the ground level and has been causing waterlogging in the villages. The locals on Wednesday demolished a part of the road to allow the water to flow away.
Incessant rainfall these past few days has resulted in an increase in the water level in most rivers and streams in Kanchanpur. Swathes of agricultural land in the foothills of the Chure region have also been inundated by continuous rainfall, said locals. The extent of damage caused by flooding is yet to be ascertained, he said.
Meanwhile, vehicular movement resumed on the bridge over the Sharda Barrage on Thursday after the water level in the Mahakali River decreased, according to the Area Police Office at Gaddachauki. Vehicular movement was brought to a halt on the bridge on Wednesday after the water level in the Mahakali River had increased. The water level in the river had reached 135,000 cusecs on Wednesday. The water level dropped to 90,000 cusecs on Thursday, according to the Area Police Office.
The Sharada Barrage bridge is estimated to be over 100 years old. Movement of heavy vehicles over the bridge is banned once the water level in the river crosses 100,000 cusecs given the dilapidated condition of the bridge.
Incessant rainfall inundated hundreds of houses in various local units of Kailali district with Bhajani Municipality the most affected by flood and inundation.
According to the mayor of the municipality, Kewal Chaudhary, hundreds of families living in different wards of the municipality have been affected by the floods.
“Houses in Kusumghat, Dhusi, Barbada, Kanhaiyapur, Bahadurpur, Janakpur, Mijaha and Sonfantha have been waterlogged. Some of the displaced locals are living under tarpaulin tents along the Postal Highway while some families have taken shelter in public buildings,” said Chaudhary.
Chaudhary said Kandha and Pathariya rivers entered the settlement following a heavy downpour on Tuesday.
“Not only has my house, but the whole village has been waterlogged. We ran to safety and are living under tarps,” said Janak Chaudhary from Dhusi village. “We are counting days for the water level to recede.”
Residents of Bhajani Municipality have been affected by floods every year. Water from Kandra, Kandha, Pathraiya and Mohana rivers enters the settlements during the monsoon season causing inundation.
Vehicular movement along the Bhimdatta Highway, which was blocked by a landslide on Monday night, is still obstructed. The highway serves as a lifeline connecting seven hill districts of the Sudurpaschim Province with the plains.
According to the Provincial Police Office, around 200 metres of road of the Budhitola-Khanidanda section in Godavari Municipality-4 has subsided causing deep cracks and holes.
According to the Provincial Traffic Office in Dhangadhi, the road repair work is challenging because of the risk of landslides. Excavators have been deployed since Tuesday morning, but there has been no significant headway in clearing the road, said Superintendent of Police Netramani Giri, head of the Provincial Traffic Police Office.
“Five excavators have been working since Wednesday morning and efforts are being made to open the highway for traffic. However, due to heavy rain on Tuesday night, the repair work has been hampered,” said Giri. “There has been some respite from rainfall so we expect to be able to clear the highway by Friday.”
A total of nine families have been displaced by the landslide.