Govt set to remove 20-yr-old vehicles

- SAMIK KHAREL, Kathmandu
Govt set to remove 20-yr-old vehicles

Jan 17, 2015-

After a long debate about removing old vehicles, the government has finally

decided to discontinue the use of public vehicles that are more than 20 years old. Officials say the government is in the final stage of formulating a law to remove these vehicles from the Kathmandu valley.

According to Tulasi Prasad Sitaula, secretary at the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport (MoPIT), the Cabinet has already endorsed the proposal, which has now been forwarded to the Law Ministry for publishing it in Nepal Gazette. “It will take around ten days, and then we plan to start removing these old vehicles,” Sitaula said.

An estimated 12,000 vehicles, which are older than 20 years, are operating in

the Valley.

The MoPIT plans to remove these vehicles in the next two years, while it is also set to reissue route permits to these vehicles if replaced by new ones. “We have said that all these vehicles which have already earned their investment will be removed without any compensation. Logically, most of these vehicles must have already earned their costs while plying on the streets for two decades,” Sitaula said.

According to him, the government might think of privileges like certain tax exempt to encourage the operators to discard the old vehicles and purchase new ones.

The government has no plans to relocate these vehicles outside the Kathmandu valley. “All these vehicles will be trapped and sold to metal purchasers. The engine will also not be used for any purpose,” Sitaula said. “We cannot afford to transfer these vehicles to other places, because we will have similar problems again.”

After Kathmandu, the government is set to continue its campaign in other districts. The government has been trying to remove old vehicles from the roads for over a decade. However, the plan has not materialised due to strong objections from transport entrepreneurs.

To make it easy for entrepreneurs to buy new vehicles, the ministry has planned to lift the ban on the transfer of vehicle ownership for a temporary period of three months. There are estimated 60,000 public vehicles in the country, a large number of which  are over 20 years old.

Published: 18-01-2015 10:43

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