Authority grants Rs50k to rebuild homes retaining Bungmati legacy

  • Post-quake Reconstruction
- Post Report, Kathmandu

Oct 7, 2018-

National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) Chief Executive Officer Sushil Gyewali on Saturday said the government has several plans to promote reconstruction of historical settlements such as Bungmati.

Speaking at an event, he said citizens rebuilding earthquake-impacted homes in such settlement areas are entitled to additional Rs50,000 to ensure buildings retain their historic legacy.

The government disburses Rs300,000 grant in three installments of Rs50,000, Rs150,000 and Rs100,000 to reconstruct private homes damaged during the earthquake that struck Nepal on April 25, 2015.

Bungmati is one of the traditional settlements in Kathmandu valley that has historic and cultural significance. It is a seventh century ancient settlement inhabited by more than 6,000 people. The area suffered much damage during the earthquake.

According to UN Habitat Nepal, the town, popular for woodcarving and handicrafts, is one of the heritage sites proposed for UNESCO listing.

Recalling Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli’s visit, during his first term in office, to unveil the masterplan of Bungmati, Gyewali said he hopes to complete the rebuilding as per the plan and invite the prime minister to inaugurate it soon.

“Reconstructing Bungmati in its traditional form will help attract a large number of tourists from Nepal and abroad. This will also have positive impact on the daily lives of the people,” Gyewali said.

Lawmaker Pampha Bhusal, elected representative from this region, vowed her support to the rebuilding process of Bungmati. She also highlighted her plan of creating a historical and cultural ring road incorporating Bungmati

defining characteristics in the longrun.

Nepal Communist Party leader Ghanashyam Bhusal said, “Preservation of art, culture and heritage will help making this region prosperous.”

Bungmati Area Reconstruction and Development Committee President Prem Bhakta Maharjan said 805 households have completed private housing reconstruction grant agreement with the NRA so far.

From this lot, 593 households have obtained first tranche of government support. The number of households obtaining second tranche is significantly low.

Aspects like delay in the making of design sketch, obtaining government approval to reconstruction properties that lie in the historic areas, among several other issues, prevent the area from picking speed in rebuilding.

More than three years since the earthquake struck, the pace of reconstruction of heritage sites remains slower than officials’ expectations. Several issues like unavailability of skilled work force and differences in reconstruction modality have slowed the process.

Published: 07-10-2018 07:28

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