The Melamchi Water Supply Project (MWSP) is considered to be the most viable long-term alternative to ease the chronic water shortage situation with in the Kathmandu valley. The project is designed to supply fresh water to Kathmandu valley from the Melamchi River in Sindhupalchowk district. Government started the MWSP in 21 December 2000 assisted by the Asian Development Bank.
The project is designed to resolve the chronic drinking water shortage in the valley on a sustainable manner considering that the residents of Kathmandu valley have been suffering from the hardship caused due to the lack of adequate and safe drinking water for a long time. Though the project has specified its objective to improve the continual shortage of water in Kathmandu valley on a sustainable long-term basis and thereby to improve the health and wellbeing of its inhabitants particularly the poor, the project has not formed to a complete end till now. Due to the delay in the completion of this project, people have been protesting time and again demanding its completion. These protests were created in order to mount pressure on the authorities to make safe drinking water accessible to all. In this regard, Pariwartan Television has talked with the contractor Lav Malhotra, the CEO of Shailing Group of Companies.
According to Malhotra, ‘people have huge concern that whether the project will be accomplished on time or not as there happened to be many issues. But I want to assure whatever happened with road issues, they are other issues. For example, it has been more than two years since we have been asking for the variation order to the department of road. They are still unable to make the variation order and the payment as well. My experience with PID is very good who are working like private department. They are focused on the work and concerned about the payment. This is different department and they have funds with them. So, I am very much sure that the work will happen on time.’
He also shared that they have not made any delay regarding the project. There is long process of getting the approval. Then, department takes their own time one or two months to object the credentials to check whether the companies making the pipe is right or not. After this, there is TPI as another approval which means third party inspection. Once they approve the TPI, only we can place the order and takes two to three months to receive the pipe. He also stressed on that ‘We are almost on track if there are any holidays it took some more time in the border, otherwise we have already started the work. Now, we have received the pipe and will receive the products hopefully by 10th of January. So, our plan is to start the work from 28th of January as far as possible. He also declared that two projects are completely different and should not compare one with another stressing on whatever happened in the past, one should forget. Malhotra expressed his concern to try their level best to make people happy and to complete the pipeline along with the road issues as soon as possible with in the timeframe.