Quake survivors hit by shortage of construction goods in Gorkha

- SUDIP KAINI, GORKHA

Jan 10, 2018-

Shortage of construction materials has hit the post-earthquake reconstruction works in Gorkha.

Earthquake survivors claimed that owing to the shortage, local shops selling hardware and construction supplies were charging exorbitant prices.

Bal Bahadur Khadka of Shahid Lakhan Rural Municipality-9 said costs of aggregate, sand, cement and steel rods have sky-rocketed.

“Local traders have arbitrarily raised the prices of construction materials. The earthquake-affected people who are building their homes with the aid money cannot afford them right now,” said Khadka, who has decided to stop the construction of his new house for now. 

The District Coordination Committee has fixed the rate of crushed stones at Rs 400 per cubic metre. But local suppliers of construction materials are charging up to 

Rs 3,000 for one cubic metre of crushed stones

Som Prasad Shrestha, operator of Gorkha Suppliers, said that the prices of construction materials were increased by their respective companies.

“We have no role behind the price hike. It was the decision of the companies that supply us the goods,” he said.

Dipesh Singh Basnet, who runs a hardware store in the district, said it was not their intention to raise the prices of goods and make profit out of families struggling to get their lives together after the 2015 earthquake.

“Mines and crushers have been unable to supply enough quantity of goods to Gorkha in the recent times,” he said.

Besides the shortage of construction materials, the quake-hit people in the district are short on skilled workers these days. And as with the shortage of construction materials, hiring skilled masons has become an expensive affair. 

“We could hire an experienced mason for Rs 500 per day earlier. These days, it is difficult to get one even for Rs 1,000 per day,” said Bharat Devkota, an earthquake survivor at Sulikot Rural Municipality-4.

 

Camp families shiver in winter

RASUWA: Quake victims living in temporary huts are facing hardships due to increasing cold in Rasuwa. Frigid weather condition has mostly affected children and senior citizens, said Bomo Tamang, one of the many quake displaced people living in Dhunche camp.    Several families have been living in the camp for the last two and a half years. So far, the National Reconstruction Authority has completed issuing all three instalments of housing reconstruction aid to 1,642 quake displaced families in Rasuwa. The first and second instalments of the aid have reached 2,923 families. (PR)

Published: 10-01-2018 08:04

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