All amount except of EU will be mobilised thru donor agencies, says Khatiwada

KATHMANDU: Vice-Chairman of the National Planning Commission, Dr Yubraj Khatiwada, has said the first installment of the grants to be provided to the earthquake survivors for house construction is going to be released through the District Natural Disaster Rescue and Relief Committee on Tuesday.

In today's meeting of the Social Justice and Human Rights Committee under the Legislature-Parliament, Vice-Chairman Khatiwada stated that it would be appropriate to provide at least the first installment through the usual process until there was access to banking services.

Stating that formulation of working procedure of providing up to Rs 300,000 loan on the basis of collective guarantee was underway if the grants was not sufficient to build the house, he said the Rs 200,000 to be provided as a support would be distributed within a few days as the amount has already been sent to the Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development.

The NPC Vice-Chairman said that the entire budget except that to be provided by the European Union would be mobilized through the donor agencies.

Khatiwada shared that out of Rs 91 billion allocated by the government in this year's budget for the reconstruction of quake-hit areas, Rs 74 billion has been deposited in the Earthquake Reconstruction Authority Fund while adding that at least 50 collective huts would be constructed at least one constituency.

He clarified that the commission was only coordinating with donor agencies in managing donations they have provided to the quake survivors, until the Reconstruction Authority starts its work.

The NPC vice-chairman said that budget ranging from Rs 300,000 to Rs 350,000 is required to construct houses for the quake survivors in hilly areas as per the building guidelines and maps set by the government, and that the government will focus on constructing safe buildings.

He said that the donor agencies and the Ministry of Finance are being urged to sign agreement for running the project and that many agencies were showing interest in building shelters for the quake victims.

Khatiwada added that the process to make regulations, working procedures and guidelines was underway for the feasibility of the authority.

Meanwhile, Sushil Shrestha, president of the committee, and members Hitraj Pandey, Kamala Kumari Ghimire and Kaushal Sah among others vented their ire against the government for the delay in providing the 'announced' compensation to the quake survivors even about eight months after the disasters.