Govt to provide Rs 200k to half a million familiesThe government has revised the guidelines on grant assistance to earthquake victims, paving the way for distribution of Rs 200,000 to each of around half a million families whose houses were destroyed in the April 25 earthquake.
The government has revised the guidelines on grant assistance to earthquake victims, paving the way for distribution of Rs 200,000 to each of around half a million families whose houses were destroyed in the April 25 earthquake.
The old provision barred the quake affected families in urban and rural areas from the state grant after obtaining concessional loans amounting to Rs2.5 million and Rs1.5 million respectively.
The revised guidelines allow such families to receive the state grant in addition to concessional loans for reconstruction. They can now obtain the grant amount with an additional loan of Rs 300,000 at 2 percent interest. However, disbursement of concessional loans are
subject to bank’s collateral requirements.
The grant amount will be distributed by the Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development, whereas technical aspects like house-map and design will be monitored by the Ministry of Urban Development. The quake affected will be asked to choose a quake-resistant design from options provided by the Building Construction Department. The families can, however, alter the number of rooms as per their necessities.
The revised guidelines facilitate the distribution of grant amount of Rs 50,000, Rs100,000 and Rs 500,00o in three instalments without deducting Rs 15,000 that had been distributed previously. The grant amount cannot be used for other purposes.
However, the families who have already received ample amount in aid or new houses through various NGOs and INGOs cannot apply for this grant. Besides, those who have lost two of their homes are only entitled to received grant for one. The guideline is silent about providing grants to those who have already reconstructed their houses on their own expenses.
The Department for Urban Development and Building Construction will monitor the maps, designs and all other technical aspects related to earthquake resistant technologies.
Quake-displaced in Palpa building houses on their own
The delay in reconstruction works has led the earthquake-displaced families in Palpa to build houses on their own.
The winter cold has started to take a toll on the displaced families living in poorly-built shelters. It has been more than seven months since the April 25 earthquake. And as far as the reconstruction and rehabilitation works go, the government has done very little to help the victims.
In fact, the bill to form the National Reconstruction Authority was passed only on Wednesday after months of delay and bickering among the major political parties.
Meanwhile, the hapless victims of the earthquake are increasing growing desperate.
Rudra Bahadur Sunari, an earthquake victim from Galdha village of Palpa, said they cannot wait for ever.
“We have been waiting for seven months already. No one has arrived to provide any support. So we have started to construct the house on our own,” said Sunari.
The victims said they were compelled to construct the houses because they could not bear the cold under the temporary shelters where they have been living since the quake.
Many displaced families in villages like Galdha, Siluwa, Jhirubash, Rampur, and Salahakot are constructing houses these days using the materials salvaged from their old houses.
“We have suffered enough waiting for the government to arrive with help. We cannot wait anymore. We are building our own houses,” said another earthquake victim Tul Bahadur Sunari.
Around 2, 300 houses in the district were destroyed by the earthquake.
Rs 30m distributed to tremor victims
PALPA: Heifer International Nepal has distributed Rs 30 million to the earthquake victims in Mujhung, Chhahara, Phoksingkot, Salahakot, Gadakot, Mityal and Galdha villages of Palpa. Ananta Silwal, programme officer of Heifer, said the sum was distributed to 1, 700 households.