Yangyel Lhaden

Thimphu thromde’s plan to tap a third water source for residents of Changbangdu, Lungtenphu, Olakha, and Babesa from a source in Dagala gewog could not materialise as Dagala gewog refused clearance.

The places receive water from two water sources in Chamgang as of today and face water shortage when sources dry up during the lean season.

The third source is located at 3.5kms away from the present sources.

An official from thromde said if they could tap water from the new source, it would help increase water supply in Babesa. “Since we could not get clearance, we are trying to supplement Chamgang water source with water source in Royal Thimphu College (RTC) area.”

He said that their plan now is to increase the capacity of existing water pipes from water sources in Chamgang that supply water to the Chamgang water treatment plant. “Thromde will also conduct a diagnostic study to understand and address the misuse of water wastage from illegal tapping, lack of water metres, and theft.”

Dagala gup Gado said that the gewog could not give clearance for thromde to tap another source since the gewog was also facing water shortage, which increased every year. “Chamgang is growing in terms of households and students. Many factories are also coming up.”

He said that two small water sources were tapped for the gewog in 1984 and 1991 and the water sources were drying every year and are inadequate now. “Gewog decided to tap the new water source thromde identified for gewog’s own consumption in 13th Plan.”

Gup Gado said that gewog had already provided two independent water sources to thromde.

Meanwhile, the water treatment plant in the RTC area is in its final stage of completion.

Scheduled to be commissioned by the first week of April, it is expected to provide clean water to the residents.

Thromde officials said that without treated water supply in areas like Baap Lhakhang and Dr Tobgyel School, debris blocked pipes and people tamper with the water metre resulting in revenue loss to the thromde.

While five water treatment plants supply clean water to Thimphu thromde, areas in Pamtsho, Jungshina, Samtenling, Changdelo, Lubding, Semtokha E-4 area, Serbithang and Baap Lhakhang and Dr Tobgyel School receive untreated water.

Officials from Thimphu thromde said that a reservoir tank for Olakha is under construction and it would complete by June.

“Residents of Olakha faces water shortage due to uneven distribution because their water tank is far and water pipes are inconsistent with the gradient,” an official said.