Patna: The growing bilateral cooperation between Nepal and India went a notch high on Monday, as the two-day meet of the Joint Committee on Kosi and Gandak Projects (JCKGP) got underway here to find solution to their areas of concern with regard to the two canal irrigation projects, including barrages across the two rivers that originate in Nepal.
The two irrigation projects are under implementation. The Indian side covers areas of Bihar and UP. Kosi and Gandak rivers originate in Nepal and end into the river Ganga. Gandak meanders through UP before entering Bihar and joining the Ganga.
On the first day of the meet ,discussions veered around security and protection of the Kosi project area (KPA), operation and maintenance of KPA, royalty for supply of construction materials, erosion of flood embankments on upstream as well as downstream sides of Kosi barrage, operation of gates in the western main canal for supplying water to Kosi western main canal and maintaining full supply level in the canal and supply of construction material from Nepal for the Kosi project facilities.
As to the Gandak project, the talks were held on unauthorized occupation of acquired land for the project, inundation of agriculture land due to drainage congestion by the main western canal and embankments of Gandak project in Nepalese territory, water supplied to Nepal Eastern Canal, maintenance of design pond level and discharge of Nepal western canal and main western canal and extension of area, implementation of flood protection and erosion works for protection of land and property, maintenance of service road and section of main western canal, as well as control over discharge laden with silt through nullah adjoining the power house by Nepal.
There were eight other listed items under the broad head of establishment.
They included salary, allowances and facilities for the employees, reimbursement of administrative expenditures in Kosi project, payment of land tax with respect to the two projects, unauthorized construction near Gate no. 36 of Gandak barrage, regular and proper power supply by Surajpura power house and problem due to Kosi wild life ‘tappu’ (island) area that falls inside the reservoir zone of Birpur barrage across Kosi.
The 10-member core Nepal team was led by director general of its department of irrigation, Rama Nand Prasad Yadav, while the Indian team was led by Arun Kumar Singh, principal secretary of water resources department (WRD), Bihar. The Indian side also included representatives from ministry of external affairs and Ganga Flood Control Commission besides from UP WRD, along with DMs of West Champaran and Supaul districts of Bihar and an official representative of Maharajganj district in Uttar Pradesh.