The number of worshippers eager to take a dip in the sacred Bagmati River is increasing as Shivaratri, a significant Hindu festival, draws near. The recently launched Dhap Dam, which was built with the intention of increasing the Bagmati river's dry season flow by up to 400 liters per second, will probably breathe new life into the Bagmati, which is currently like a lifeless river.
The Asian Development Bank-funded project will add more water to the Bagmati River for the second Shivaratri festival in two years.
Rajenda Kumar Lingden, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Energy, Water Resources, and Irrigation, inaugurated the Dhap Dam today in Sundarijal. DPM also opened the gate valve and let the water out of the dam.
In his remarks to the program, DPM Lingden expressed his delight at the project's completion just a few days before the Shivaratri festival. He stated that devotees will now have access to clean water. The DPM stated that another dam in Nagmati is required to increase the flow of water in the Bagmati river, and he expressed the government's commitment to building the dam in Nagmati.
Bikram Pandey, Minister of Urban Development, thanked the Asian Development Bank for its financial assistance in constructing the dam. He also expressed hope that ADB will support the Nagmati Dam.
The lessons learned from the Dhap Dam, according to Arnaud Cauchois, Country Director of the Asian Development Bank Nepal Office, will be very useful to all stakeholders in building the Nagmati Dam more efficiently.
"Despite many odds, I am delighted to be here today among you in the inauguration ceremony of the beautiful dam and a reservoir filled with precious water," Arnaud Cauchois said.
At the event, attended by Public Service Commission member and water expert Madhav Belbase and other experts, Director General of Department of Irrigation Sushil Chandra Acharya stated that the project is critical to increasing the flow of the Bagmati river.
Belbase, who leads the Ministry of Water Supply in completing the mega-Melamchi Project, also plays an important role in pushing the project's construction in the current model, which includes the involvement of the Department of Irrigation.
A unit chief, Krishna Prasad Rijal, emphasized the significance of the project. Santosh Chalise, a member of the House of Representatives, stated that the local community in the region is ready to support the construction of the Nagmati Project.
Dipak Kumar Risal, Mayor of Gokarneshwor Municipality, has urged the government to begin construction of the Nagmati Dam immediately. He stated that the municipality is eager to collaborate on the project.
According to Uddhav Timilsina, chairperson of the High Powered Committee for the Integrated Development of the Bagmati Civilization, the EIA for the Nagmati Dam has already been approved, and construction on the project will begin soon.
The project began construction in 2015 with a target completion date of 24 months; however, the project was completed five years later than expected due to various obstacles.
The Asian Development Bank provided Rs. 890 million for the dam's construction, which is located within Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park, Ward No. 1 of Gokrneshwor Municipality.
This is Nepal's first dam of the Concrete Face Rock File Dam (CFRD) type. The dam is located 2090 meters above sea level, 17 kilometers north of Sundarijal, and 34 kilometers from Tribhuwan International Airport.
The dam stands 24 meters tall (DSTople Spilling Crest level).
The top length of the dam is 175 meters, and the crest width is 8 meters. Similarly, the maximum bottom width is 100 meters, and the number of main dams is one and three.
The dam, which has a reservoir capacity of 1.2 MCM and is 12 hectors in size, will increase the seasonal flow of the Bagmati river.