Dearth of engineers in Parbat hinders reconstruction of quake damaged houses

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PARBAT — The majority of total 5,269 quake affected households in Parbat district are still waiting for the state’s positive intervention in deployment of adequate numbers of engineers and other technicians for them to rebuild their quake-damaged houses.

Although two years have passed on since the 7.6 magnitude earthquake struck the country, incurring a huge loss to lives and properties, in lack of adequate intervention from the State, reconstruction of quake-damaged houses in all these districts, including Parbat, is yet to pick a pace.

One such intervention is to deploy engineers in adequate numbers in all the quake-hit districts, including Palpa, which would ensure the post-quake reconstruction process to gain a momentum, according to District Coordination Committee Officer Tulsiram Sharma.

Officer Sharma said, “If the Department of Urban Development and Building Construction could mobilize at least one engineer in every quake affected local level unit, the reconstruction process could be expedited.”

There are altogether 4,070 households in the district who have already received the first installment of relief grant handed out by government which amounts to more than Rs 200 million in cash.

The previous government led by CPN-Maoist Centre’s Chairperson Pushpa Kamal Dahal had pledged to give Rs 300,000 to such survivors.

The regulation has it that those beneficiaries have to start construction of the house and lay the foundation for it to be eligible for second and third installment of relief assistance.

There are only seven engineers in various seven local units the district who would be supporting the locals to help rebuild quake-resilience houses, according to Sharma, who commented that this number was disproportionate to the need.

He shared that the local authority had placed request to the National Reconstruction Authority repeatedly to deploy more number of engineers, the Authority is yet to pay any heeds to it.

Another factor causing delay in the reconstruction of quake-damaged houses was sparce number of banks in the district. There are a limited number of banks in the district. Moreover, the bank, through which the Authority distributes the relief assistance, does not have its branches across many places in the district.

Amid this, most of the quake survivors in Parbat district who have been residing in the temporary shelters following the disaster are relentlessly waiting for the appropriate intervention from the State. RSS