Nepalgunj: A solar pump has been added to the canal of Sikta Irrigation Project in order to discharge the service of water in the places of higher altitude.The solar pump, which was added at a cost of Rs. 300,000, will allow water of the canal to reach around 400 hectares of arable land in Kachnapur, Shamshergunj, Balapur and Dhakeri. These lands are at a little higher altitude than the area through which the canal passes through.
“The people in the areas higher than the canal used to rely on rain water for irrigation. Through the solar pump, the water in the canal will reach the higher areas easily and help farmers improve their agriculture production,” said Lok Bahadur Thapa, chief at Sikta Irrigation Project.
Authorities have also constructed small canals in the higher areas to allow the water to reach different arable lands. In the first phase, the water has reached around 15 hectares of land in Shumshergunj.
“The solar pump has allowed water to reach our fields easily and we don’t have to rely on rain water anymore. We have also begun cultivating maize, wheat, mustard and potato after water arrived in this place,” said Jiban Kunwar, a farmer in Shumshergunj.
The solar pump starts running with the energy from sunlight and starts pumping up water. However, the farmers have argued that one solar pump is not enough for them.
“The water which comes through one solar pump has been a relief but is not enough for quality production. We request authorities to add a couple of more,” said Naresh Bahadur KC, another local farmer.
The Sikta Irrigation Project, one of the pride projects of Nepal, had been providing irrigation facility to over 20,000 hectares of land in Duduwa, Kohalpur and Nepalgunj since it came into operation last year.
The project had begun 14 years ago in a bid to provide irrigation facility to over 34,000 hectares of land across Banke. Around Rs. 17 billion has been invested in the project until now, informed officials.Officials also informed that the process of constructing the canal on the eastern side is moving in full swing.