Pokhara: Continuous deposition of sediments, mineral particles inside the water of Phewatal also known as a siltation process going on has certainly worried the locals and Gandaki state.
The locals and Gandaki state are much worried because the siltation process taking place inside the depth of Phewatal is likely to taint the image of Phewatal as one of the well known icons of tourism and its siltation process perhaps may contaminate its entity of being one of the sought after touristic spot in the world.
Preservation of the Phewatal in its current state is the need of the hour according to experts related to the tourism industry in Nepal.
Phewatal is not only famous for the international tourists but also popular among the domestic tourists who annually visit it and enjoy the natural sights of the surroundings.
Considering the siltation process going on inside the Phewa lake and dire need to protect and preserve this lake for the use of attractive spot for the foreign tourists and internal tourists, the Bagmati state and locals have come up with the idea of conserving the Phewatal by digging out the silt deposited at its bottom and make if free from the sedimentation, so that the depth of the lake remains the same for the tourists to enjoy a dip inside and boating can be more romantic for the tourists.
Of course talking about Phewatal means talking about lucrative and comfortable hotels as well including tea shops.
Thus, the Bagmati state and locals have embarked upon the conservation of the Phewtal by constructing check dame at various places which is positive enough for the time being.
Country’s supreme court has also pave the way of the protection and preservation of the lake as recommended by study of Biswa Prakash Lamichhane.
The Gandaki state and Pokhara metropolitan are coordinating and cooperating to construct first phase check dams to protect the watershed area of this lake at four places.
Check dams and center pokhari is being constructed at ward no 23,24 areas of Baityanikhola, Laurukhola, Adheri kholaand Ghantimachina. The total budget allocated is around 20.8 million which will be spent by the Ministry of industry, tourism, forest and environment and Pokhara metropolitan.
Check dam at Pokhara 23 is under construction at the cost of 8.8 million which will be at least 100 meters in length, wide and four meter high check dam amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
A Japanese team of JICA team in 1950 and 2000 did a study of the Phewa lake and concluded that Phewalake has shrunk by 6.2 km.
Similarly a study conducted in 2013 showed that the Phewa lake which is spread in 439 hectares has its deepest depth as much as 23 meters only while the general depth of the lake is 9.6 meters only.
That’s why the experts have suggested that the silt of the lake must be removed outside and sold out. Gandaki state Chief Minister Prithvi Subba Gurung has also urged the federal government to delineate the outer boundary of the lake.
Beside Phewatal, Begnas tal, Rupa tal Dipangtal Maidital, Khostetal, Nurental, Gudetal and Kamaltal are nine lakes of Pokhara enlisted as famous watershed areas in the world,
Protecting and preserving these watershed area like Phewatal is definitely a progressive work that ignites new hope among the tourism entrepreneurs of Pokhara.
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