Central and local leaders discuss proper investment in infrastructure development in LumbiniMayor of Butwal Sub-metropolitan City Khel Raj Pandey said they have prioritised health and education while formulating the city’s policies and programmes.
The second session of the Lumbiniko Samarthya discussed infrastructures and the various aspects of local units in Lumbini Province. The issues related to infrastructure at local units were discussed under the topic 'Municipalities and Infrastructure'.
Gokarna Bista, UML secretary and ex-minister; Dhawal Shamsher Rana, lawmaker and RPP general secretary; Khel Raj Pandey, mayor of Butwal Sub-metropolitan City; Saraswati Darlami, chair of Bagansakali Rural Municipality of Palpa shared their views in the second session.
UML Secretary Bista said local levels can develop infrastructures taking religious, cultural, and ethnic diversity into consideration.
Lawmaker Rana stressed that local municipalities should be well-prepared to tackle disasters ranging from fire to disease outbreaks.
“Infrastructure development should start from the local level. We all have felt that even in the situation of political instability and even when the country was mired in different types of political confusions, the local levels have always worked as a strong pillar of the nation,” said Rana.
Mayor of Butwal Sub-metropolitan City Pandey said they have prioritised human development—particularly education and health, while formulating the city’s policies and programmes. Also according to him, the sub-metropolitan is excelling in development works. “The investment made in the development works in Butwal is three times more than the budget ceiling,” he said.
All the participants agreed that the budget for the local units was not allocated in a manner that was effective enough for the local levels to effectively work for the infrastructure development.
Likewise, Chair of Bagansakali Rural Municipality of Palpa Saraswati Darlami said the local units can not work effectively for the infrastructure development on their own as there are problems in the budget allocation by the centre and the provinces. “They allocate insufficient budget so we can’t work for infrastructure development as we want to.”
Bista agreed that the budget allocated to local units has not been sufficient. “In some cases, there might have been problems in the selection of the projects, based on the demand and accessibility,” said Bista.
They were sharing their experiences and views in the second session of the interaction programme entitled ‘Lumbiniko Samarthya’ organised by the Kantipur Media Group, in collaboration with the Office of the Chief Minister and Council of Ministers of Lumbini Province. The programme focuses on the implementation of federalism and exploring economic opportunities in Lumbini Province.
Sanju Poudel, the Post correspondent, moderated the session.