The existing institutional structure and work procedure of the National Reconstruction Authority will continue till mid-November.

A meeting of Steering Committee of NRA chaired by Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli decided to keep its institutional structure and work procedure unchanged for the next five months as the reconstruction works, mainly the private housing, could not be completed within the current fiscal 2020-21 as targeted earlier.

NRA Chief Executive Officer Sushil Gyewali said it would complete the reconstruction works targeted for 2020-21 by mid-November of next fiscal.

"As the prohibitory orders imposed by the district administration offices to contain the second wave of COVID-19 spread posed a hurdle to reconstruction works, mainly the private housing, targeted for 2020-21, the previous exit and hand over action plan of the NRA has been revised without changing its institutional structure and work procedure," he informed. CEO Gyewali also said that the reconstruction works scheduled for 2020-21 would be completed within the first four-month of the upcoming fiscal 2021- 22, while handing over the remaining works to the relevant ministries by providing them with necessary resources and documentation. The tenure of the NRA expires in December.

The government is also set to organise an international conference on December 7 to 9 in order to highlight the success and experience of the post-earthquake reconstruction in Nepal. The conference may be held physically or virtually depending on the situation of COVID-19 pandemic.

A budget of allocated Rs 33.55 billion for fiscal 2021-22 to complete the remaining construction works of structures that were damaged in the April 2015 earthquakes.

The budget will be used to reconstruct 14,155 classrooms of 1,307 schools, 105 health institutions, 195 cultural and archaeological heritages, 36 government buildings and to build integrated settlements in 39 places.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Bishnu Prasad Paudel, who was also present at the meeting, pledged to sanction necessary budget from the first day of the next fiscal. Similarly, the meeting decided to call on the beneficiaries of private housing reconstruction grant to complete their house by mid-November in compliance with the prescribed standards and specifications.

According to the NRA, the reconstruction and retrofitting of archaeological heritages and buildings, including Shital Niwas, Babarmahal, Balmandir, Kesharmahal, Harihar Bhawan and Tri-Chandra College will be accelerated. The government is also preparing to implement the 10-year Campaign on Disaster Resilient Nepal from the coming fiscal on the basis of the experience the country has gained on post-earthquake reconstruction and rehabilitation.

The master plan of Broader Tundikhel, an integrated development of Tundikhel area at the centre of Kathmandu, prepared by NRA will be implemented in the next fiscal.

A version of this article appears in the print on June 26 2021, of The Himalayan Times.