Landslide at Khotila area in India has raised fear of flood in Khalanga, the district headquarters of Darchula, which is situated on the edge of Mahakali River in Nepal.
According to The Kathmandu Post report, Khalanga residents say the landslide at Khotila area could block the river any time, and its outcome could be disastrous for their town.
Five years ago, flooded Mahakali River had swept away 156 homes and killed 12 people in Khalanga. The incident is still fresh in the minds of Khalanga residents, The Kathmandu Post report says.
Apart from the landslide, the people of Khalanga also have Dhauliganga Hydroelectric Project in India to contend with. Five years into its construction, around 70 percent of the project has been completed so far.
Quoting a local resident Harka Tamata, the report says the Indian side usually opens the dam gates whenever there is rainfall in the higher altitude region, letting a large volume of water rush downwards towards Khalanga.“There is the fear of landslide damming the river and the man-made dam of Dhauliganga Hydroelectric Project stealing our sleep,” Tamata said.
Contrary to what the people of Khalanga fear, Sushil Chandra Devkota, the chief of Mahakali River Control Project, sees no immediate threat of flood in the riverside town from landslides or from the Dhauliganga Hydroelectric Project.
“The river has been widened to prevent landslides from obstructing its flow. There is no cause for immediate concern,” Devkota added.