Nepal reconstruction underway but in snail pace

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File Photo: World Bank.

KATHMANDU (Xinhua) – Nepal has only completed reconstruction of 22,234 houses out of the total 800,000 damaged by a deadly earthquake in April 2015 as the Himalayan nation marks the second anniversary of the disaster on Tuesday.

Of the total houses rebuilt, most of them are done by the residents without the government support, according to Nepal Reconstruction Authority (NRA), a government agency which coordinates reconstruction efforts.

Most of the families who are eligible to get government’s grant to rebuild their houses are yet to receive full payment, only getting the first tranches of 50,0000 Nepalese rupees (482 U.S. dollars) out of the total pledged 300,000 Nepalese rupees (2,893 U.S. dollars) in full installments.

The Nepalese government has identified 626,695 families to benefit from the government’s grant. Of them, 54,3606 have got first tranches of the grant from the government. The NRA has also started distributing the second installments in a few districts out of the 14 hardest-hit districts. The full payment will be made in three installments.

“I have to admit that the reconstruction has been slow,” Govind Raj Pokharel, chief executive officer of the NRA, said on Monday.

He said that lack of trained human resources are the main reason behind the delay. “The frequent protest and resignation by the technical staffs demanding higher pay also contributed to the delay.”

A massive 7.8-magnitude earthquake rocked Nepal on April 25, 2015, killing over 9,000 people and leaving thousands injured.