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Inadequate infrastructure at the source leads to drinking water shortage in Narphung

Residents of Narphung satellite town in Samdrup Jongkhar are grappling with a drinking water shortage due to the lack of proper infrastructure at the water source. This has left the residents with limited access to clean and safe drinking water, especially during the dry season.

18 residents of Narphung satellite town rely on the Tekshingri water source, which lacks the necessary infrastructure such as a proper concrete water tank to store water.

Currently, residents are using this 200-litre drum as a water storage tank at the source. But they say the drum gets washed away when there is heavy rainfall, leaving them without water for days.

According to the residents, the water tank constructed by the government at the source in 2015 got damaged due to a landslide. And the water reservoir located just above the town is worn out and leaks water.

“The water source is prone to get washed away by a landslide. This issue could be addressed if a wall and a water tank are constructed at the source. Water pipes are also broken. So, a water tank at the source with new pipes will solve our water woes,” said Karma, a resident of Narphung,

“As the source is small, we do not receive enough water. We face water shortage, especially in winter. The government provided us with water pipes but we could not use them properly,” said Tshewang Jamtsho, another resident.

“We have to visit the water source once every week to maintain it or else we do not receive sufficient water. Without water, it is difficult for travellers as we have to depend on water stored in drums when using the restrooms,” said Wangdi, a resident.

According to the Gomdar Gup, the gewog administration could not start the water supply construction works as the Narphung Action Area Plan was not ready.

With the plan finalised only towards the end of last year the gewog office now plans to supply water from a new source at Melongbrak juk.

“The current water source is small, so it is not sufficient. The gewog administrations of Orong and Gomdar are working together to supply water. We completed a survey and we are planning to prioritise the works during the second year of the 13th Five Year Plan,” said Karchung, Gomdar Gup.

Narphung town is 60 kilometres from Samdrup Jongkhar town towards Trashigang.

The residents say a reliable water supply is necessary as travellers stop by for meal and vegetable shopping every day.

Kinley Wangchuk, Samdrup Jongkhar

Edited by Phub Gyem