FIPMO Executive Committee met on 26 March 2018
March 26, 2018
A FIPMO delegation met Finance Minister
April 22, 2018
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Water Supply situation in Kathmandu

Currently, the total water supply in Kathmandu is 90 million liter/day.  With the 170-million liter/day water from the first phase of Melamchi project, it is expected that there will be 260 million liter/day from October 2018.  With the additional supply of 340 million liter/day from the second phase of the project, the total water supply in Kathmandu is estimated at 600 million liter/day from 2025 (roughly).  Thus per capital water supply will increase six fold when the second phase of the project is complete to cater the need of some 50 million population then.

Melamchi Project

We will share the briefing material (a power point presentation) to FIPMO members when received from Mr. Thapa.  Some of the highlights are:

  • The project consists of three different parts – (a) the supply of water to the processing plant in Sundarijal; (b) the water purification plant at Sundarijal; and (c) the network of water distribution in Kathmandu valley. The briefing that we received and the project site we visited concerned with the supply of water to the processing plant in Sundarijal.
  • Primarily Asian Development Bank funds the first phase of the project to supply 170 million liter/day from Melamchi River.
  • The second phase for an addition 340 million liter/day of water will come from other two river sources namely Yangri and Larke to Melamchi River, which is being worked out now, and has a positive response for financing from the ADB.
  • The first phase entailed diversion of Melamchi water through 26 km of underground (varying from 60 meter to 1300 meter from the surface level at different points) tunnels to Sundarijal.
  • The tunnel works were undertaken from four points (edits) on both sides. The last 7 meters of the tunnel was being worked on. It was expected that the breakthrough would occur sometime in the morning of 10th April (a formal celebration of breakthrough was scheduled for 12th April).
  • The present contractor, responsible for the construction of the headwork, tunnels, and the processing plant in Sundarijal should complete the works by end of June.
  • Other preparations such as tests of water purification, tests of distribution network etc. would require some three months. And it should be possible to distribute water by end of September.


It was obvious from the briefing as well as from site visit that a lot of work was being done in a very difficult terrain amongst number of technical challenges and practical hurdles. The project team both at Kathmandu level as well as the field level seemed to have excellent knowledge of what they are doing, very skillful and much committed to the job that they have been doing.  FIPMO team was very much impressed with the commitment and dedication of the project management and staff.  It was obvious that while there is a lot of negative comment on the delay of the project, there is not sufficient recognition of the dedication and commitment of the personnel involved.  FIPMO members through various channels could undertake a role to disseminate factual information and progress made under the project to mitigate the negative rumors.


We would like to acknowledge and thank for an excellent courtesy accorder to FIPMO by the Project Board.  We appreciate Mr. Ram Chandra Devkota, the Executive Director, for meeting us and providing an overview despite his busy schedule.  We are, especially, grateful to Mr. Bhoj Bikram Thapa, Deputy Executive Director, for his patience as we were pursuing the briefing and the field visit, and his excellent briefing to us about the project.  The briefing on site by Mr. Shiva Kumar Sharma was invaluable to understand the technical details of the project.  The last, but not the least, the young and energetic engineers Mr. Maheswar Mulmi and geologist Mr. Rabindra Dhakal at the head-works, not only showed us the ins and outs of the project, literally, but also made us proud through the display of their commitment and dedication, reflective of the Nepalese youth.

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