Nepal Minute - out of the ordinary


The Valley water authority has announced it will be pumping 10 million litres more water through the Melamchi mains into Kathmandu Valley, taking the daily volume of water distribution to 120 million litres.  

After a nearly six-month break, the Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited (KUKL) resumed the supply of drinking water to the Valley households on December 9.

Although 175 million litres water has been brought from Melamchi River to the Sunjarilal water treatment plant, the KUKL has been distributing only 110 million litres. 

The KUKL Project Implementation Directorate lamented its inability to distribute in full capacity, pointing to problems in the distribution system.  

“It was taking time to adjust the sequencing in some of the valves of the distribution system,” KUKL spokesperson Prakash Kumar Rai said on Wednesday morning. 

“We will start distributing 120 million litres of water from this evening.”

Of the 10 tanks built for the distribution of Melamchi water, eight have been filled with water from the project. The tanks are located at Bode, Katunje, Khumaltar, Min Bhawan, Mahankalchaur, Pani Pokhari, Anamnagar and Balaju. 

The remaining water tanks in Kirtipur and Bansbari will be filled within four days, Rai said.

The KUKL first started distributing the Melamchi water in Kathmandu on March 28 last year. But the supply was disrupted following major floods and landslides in Sindhupalchowk on June 15.

The headworks of the project was completely swept away and the tunnel was buried under dozens of feet-high pebbles, sand and mud-laden debris. 

As the permanent fix to the project remains far-fetched, the water supply from Melamchi will be limited to the dry season at the moment to avoid any damage to the tunnel – the most expensive piece of infrastructure of the Melamchi project.

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