Drying water sources leave communities in Samdrup Jongkhar Thromde struggling for water

The residents of Kipse, Samdrup Gatshel and Bangtsho in Samdrup Jongkhar Thromde are grappling with drinking water shortages as their water sources are drying up. This has led to families and businesses struggling to access clean water for their daily needs. The residents are asking the authorities for immediate help.

According to the Samdrup Jongkhar Thromde administration, the water sources at Zalakhe and Lemsorong have been the primary sources of water for the area for many years.

However, due to possible effects of climate change and the increasing demand for water from nearby villages, these water sources have gradually dried up over the years.

As a result, the residents of the core town of Kipse are currently struggling to get sufficient clean water for drinking, with some without water for over a week.

“We are supposed to have enough water in the thromde area but it is not the case. People in the core town area and even those in the suburbs are struggling with water shortage. Even the water I provide for my tenants is not enough. Officials blame elephants for having damaged water lines but the situation doesn’t seem to be getting any better,” said Rinzin, a resident.

“We have enough stored water for ourselves but those who have tenants are having trouble. Since I don’t have tenants, I use our stored water whenever we don’t get water. However, sometimes even we face shortages,” said Pema Wangdi, another resident.

“Sometimes officials say the water source has dried up and other times they blame broken pipelines. The water supply is not reliable here. We have to store water because the supply is not reliable,” said Gawa Norbu, also a resident.

According to the Samdrup Jongkhar Thromde, water tanker service is made available whenever residents demand it.

However, the Thromde administration is currently building a new water supply system from the new water source at Morongchhu spending Nu 124 M. This is expected to solve the water shortage.

According to the Thromde, more than 60 per cent of the work has been completed. Works are expected to be completed by November this year.

For now, until the new water supply from Morongchhu is complete, residents of Kipse, Bangtsho, and Samdrup Gatshelwill have to continue experiencing water shortages.

Kinley Wangchuk, Samdrup Jongkhar

Edited by Sonam Pem

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