KATHMANDU, May 21: Last week, Bal Krishna Maharjan, 44 of Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC)-12 Onde reached Adarsha Vidya Mandir to talk with principal and teachers, where his son is enrolled.
But, Maharjan had neither gone there to discuss his son´s acedemic issues nor to pay tuition fee. He was there to tell the teachers about his compulsion, a common problem of Kathmanduties.
“For the past three months, not a single drop of water has come out my tap. How could my children have bath frequently?” he complained. He said his children complained to him of being humiliated before classmates. “Teachers scolded them for not being tidy. I told them about our problem and requested them to understand,” he said adding, “Moreover, the school has white uniform, which quickly becomes dirty.”
Suni Maharjan, 32, of KMC-21, Dalachhi has similar tale. “I have not been able to wash clothes for a month. We wore all the clothes we had and started to wear them a second time without washing.” she said. “We don´t even have water to sooth our throats.” She has been buying water from tanker for household chores from months, which is expensive. She said they have to walk about a kilometer to buy water. “We need 200 liters of water to do kitchen works only. For drinking we are buying jar water," she said. Maharjan´s family is spending more than Rs 3,000 a month for water.
Surendra Sing of Teku hight complained he is paying money to the Kathmandu Upatyaka Kahanepani Limited (KUKL), the body responsible to distribute water, without getting services. “I paid Rs 900 in a tax to KUKL for a whole year but water comes only three months in a year,” he said. “Due to the lack of water we are unable to flush toilets and as result all toilets in my home are jammed,” he said. According to Sing most homes in his settlement are old and do not have underground tank to store water.
Shanti Pande-46 of Dalachhi said wasting even a drop of water in her home is a big crime. “I used to warn my children not to use much water,” she said. Pandey said they have not recieved water supply for more than a month. “It has been weeks since we bathed and our body are starting to smell horrible.”
Inhabitants of ward numbers 12, 20 and 21 of KMC protested at KUKL, head office at Tripureshore and surrounded officials on Tuesday. They said they were not getting regular supply of water since months. “Due to worry, we can´t sleep properly. We have to wake at midnight to check the tap. Instead of water, only air comes gushes out of taps,” Said Shyam Krishna Shrestha of KMC 21 ward. He said people of his area are spending hours to fetch water.
The KUKL said in an average four such teams are coming in KUKL head office demanding water supply. People of Chabahil and Dhumbarahi area staged protest at Mahankalchaur office of KUKL, demanding water on Monday.
The KUKL is providing water once a week. According to the office, demand for water in Valley is 330 million a day but supply is only 80 million liters. The office said production of water at both sources of Sundarijal have decreased this season by about 80 percent.