Nearly six years after the devastating earthquake, the National Reconstruction Authority has said 93 per cent of private houses damaged or destroyed have been rebuilt.

According to NRA, it has already reconstructed a large number of private houses, educational and health institutions and cultural heritage sites in 32 earthquake-affected districts and some infrastructure are in the final stages of reconstruction.

"We have achieved 93 per cent progress in the reconstruction of private houses, which is the main area of NRA's work responsibility," said NRA CEO Sushil Gyewali, "Out of 811,754 earthquake beneficiaries who had signed agreement for the government grant, 753,104 have finished rebuilding their houses."

According to him, the first instalment has been distributed to 99.86 per cent of the beneficiaries, 86.78 per cent beneficiaries have received the second instalment, while 78.66 per cent have received the third and final instalment. "We are confident that the basic works of reconstructing private houses will be completed within this fiscal year," he added. Similarly, NRA has resettled 4,720 beneficiaries who had been living in 299 vulnerable areas after the earthquake.

Towards the cultural heritage sites, 493 out of 920 sites have been reconstructed while 288 are under construction. Likewise, regarding educational institutions, out of 7,553 schools that needed to be rebuilt, reconstruction of 83 per cent has been completed, and 17 per cent are currently under construction.

Out of 1,197 health institutions, 698 have been rebuilt and 296 are in the process of being rebuilt.

Similarly, rebuilding of 90 per cent of 415 government buildings needing reconstruction has been completed. Reconstruction of 214 out of 216 buildings belonging to various security agencies being built under the NRA has been completed so far.

"Over the last five years since the establishment of NRA, it has made significant achievements despite many challenges like political instability, blockade, lack of financial and human resources, geographic difficulties, transition to federalism, election of three tiers of governments and integration of staff,"

Gyewali added.

The government has extended the NRA's tenure till December 2021 after the COVID-19 forced the reconstruction activities to be halted.

Out of the one-year extension period, the NRA will carry out its regular work till the end of this fiscal year (mid-July). Then from July 16 to December 25, the NRA plans to hand over all its plans and programmes to the concerned ministries and government agencies.

A version of this article appears in the print on April 24, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.