Valley

Lack of integrated approach mars development works

- ARJUN POUDEL, Kathmandu

Jun 16, 2019-

In February, the Department of Water Supply and Sewerage, dug out a stretch of Taha Galli to lay sewage pipes.

A couple of weeks after the department completed its work, the Project Implementation Division of the Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited dug out the same stretch to lay drinking water pipes to supply Melamchi’s water.  

Soon after, Nepal Telecom dug the same stretch of the road to lay telephone cables.

It’s been four months since the first digging started on the Taha Galli road with little hope of the pipe laying works to complete anytime soon.

Taha Galli is about 50 metres behind the Central Office of the Kathmandu Metropolitan City, and is also where Mayor Bidya Sundar Shakya comes from.

The Bhaktapur Municipality is going through the same ordeal.

The municipality has been paving the path between Taumadhi Tole and Nasamana Tole, popular tourist spots, with stones at an estimated cost of over Rs60 million. But the work has failed to gain momentum because the Project Implementation Division of the Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited is yet to lay pipes for supply of Melamchi’s water.

“It can take years for us to pave the path if we wait for the division to lay pipes,” Bhaktapur Mayor Sunil Prajapati told the Post, “but once we start digging the path, we must immediately lay stones to prevent dust pollution.”

Aforementioned are just a few exhibits that show lack of integrated approach and coordination among various government agencies as regards to the development works being carried out in the Valley.

“We are having to deal with unbearable filth and stench from the sewage for over a month now,” Sanjaya Lama, a local of Bhotebahal in Taha Galli complained, “They have been digging out the road for the past four months without any signs of stopping.”

The construction works are soon to lose momentum with the approaching monsoon.

“Once the rains come, it will be difficult for us to move about,” said Anil Singh, an electric trader. “We stand to incur heavy losses in our business.”

Former Chief Secretary Som Lal Subedi said that desired progress in development works cannot be achieved unless an integrated approach is applied. “We have not been able to make significant progress in development works in spite of all agencies—federal, provincial and local—have been involved in the same jobs,” said Subedi.

One of the reasons development works haven’t been able to take off in the country is due to the failure of the federal government to strengthen the local governments, experts say.

Earlier, the contractors use to be accountable to the District Development Committee and Local Development Officers, but now they report to the District Coordination which has been inactive.

Sunil Ranjan Singh, a member of the now dissolved Local-level Restructuring Committee said that failure of all three tiers of government in delivering good governance is the root cause for the sluggish pace of development works. “Nobody works as per the spirit of the constitution, which is the root of all problems,” said Singh.

Published: 17-06-2019 07:00

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