Nepal, engaged in encircling India, stopped the movement of Indian engineers by building a barrier on the Valmiki barrage amid the threat of flood. This was the first time that their movement was banned. When India put pressure on this, Nepal granted Indian engineers temporary permission to inspect the barrage. However, due to lack of a permanent solution, a permanent diagnosis of the danger of flooding in UP-Bihar cannot be found.
Temporary permission to inspect Valmiki barrage
Due to this attitude of Nepal, engineers are facing difficulty in working there. There is also a store room of the Irrigation Department of Bihar on the Gandak barrage, where the necessary equipment to deal with floods has been kept. Bihar’s Water Resources Minister Sanjay Jha has also expressed concern over Nepal’s actions.
The entire responsibility of repair, maintenance and operation of Gandak barrage is with the Water Resources Department of the Government of Bihar. Earlier, on the pretext of lockdown, Nepal halted the repair work of four embankments (A Gap, B Gap, Link Dam and Nepal Dam) built on the Gandak River in its region. Due to this, repair works were not done on them this year. Repair work of the main western Gandak canal was also not permitted. Water had to be released without repair.
This is Valmiki barrage and its danger
Valmiki Barrage has 36 gates, of which 18 lie in the border of Nepal and 18 Bihar. The maximum water discharge capacity from the barrage is 8.5 lakh cusecs. According to the irrigation department, there will be no threat to the embankments of Nepal even if four lakh cusecs of water is discharged from the barrage. Currently, the discharge of water from the barrage is between 90 thousand and 1.50 lakh cusecs. When this discharge reaches around 5.50 lakh cusecs, most parts of Maharajganj and Kushinagar, including Nepal’s dam, will be flooded.
Negotiations are continuing with the Nepalese authorities. Bihar engineers have got permission to visit the barrage. Nepal’s embankments are constantly being monitored. All possible measures are being taken to prevent flood situation in UP-Bihar.