A barrage is a dam constructed in the water bodies to either increase the depth or to divert the flow of water. Koshi, the biggest river of Nepal has its one namely, Koshi Barrage. Lying across the Koshi river, the barrage also serves as a pathway for transportation. It facilitates the across movement for the people of Sunsari and Saptari. It is at 26.5263°N 86.9269°E.It lengths 1,150m(3,773 ft.) and its width is 10m(32.8 ft). It lies near the boarder to India. Koshi barrage has 56 sluices to regulate the water flow. Talking about it’s history, it was constructed by an Indian company Joseph and company, India as a result of the agreement signed between the Nepalese and Indian governments on 25th April, 1954. The construction was started in 1958 and was completed in 1962.
The project was inaugurated jointly by the then King of Nepal, Mahendra Bir Bikram Shah and the then Prime Minster of India, Jawaharlal Nehru. At the contemporary time, it was the biggest river project in the whole South Asia. Koshi river is known as the ‘sorrow of Bihar’ because the river had a very harsh impact on the Bihar of India due its massive overflow. Especially during the monsoon, Bihar was highly vulnerable to the devastation of Koshi. So, the barrage was constructed in order to protect the frequent disaster there. The Barrage is not solely limited to the water regulation. It has widely contributed in other aspects as well. Koshi is believed to be the holy river of Nepal. Nepalese festivals like Chhatt Puja and Maghe Sankraanti are also celebrated in the banks of Koshi. The river is worshipped by the people dwelling around the banks and nearby villages. These holy celebrations attracts huge number of pilgrims yearly promoting the barrage in sector of tourism. Similarly, people are also crazy to enjoy the mouth watering fishes. People can indulge fishery in a greater extent. Koshi barrage is also the popular visit among people. People love to enjoy the pleasant music of water and the cool breeze of air tickling their cheeks and refreshing their minds. You can also enjoy the mesmerising sunset through Koshi barrage .
During favourable seasons, people are also found enjoying the picnics on the river banks. You can take a boat ride to communicate with the river. So, these all are facilitated by the Koshi barrage being on of the main route to cross the gigantic river and explore it as These sorts of specialities reflects its importance on tourism. The irrigation around the nearby lands of Nepal is also eased by the barrage. This has contributed a lot in uplifting the agriculture in the nearby areas of the river. Koshi barrage prevents people, crops as well as other infrastructures during the rainy season. The doors are opened whenever the hazardous situation is seen the river. It also contributes in the economic sector by promoting the internal as well as external tourism. Last but not the least the barrage also plays a huge role in promoting the holy beliefs and local cultures reflecting the national pride around the globe.
-Article written by: Suyash Dhakal for Land Nepal