Kathmandu, December 27

Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli today formally inaugurated the reconstruction of Dharahara, which was destroyed in the 2015 earthquakes.

The government will construct 294 feet tall Dharahara next to the ruins of the old one. The remains of old Dharahara will be kept protected inside a glass frame.

PM Oli had previously launched a campaign ‘I will rebuild my Dharahara myself’, urging citizens to contribute for the cause. The campaign, however, failed to get supporters, leaving the reconstruction of the historic tower in limbo for more than three-and-a-half years.

Speaking at the foundation laying ceremony, PM Oli expressed hope that the reconstruction work would be completed within two years. “I wish to have a view of Kathmandu with more greenery and well-managed roads from the top of the new Dharahara.” He said the new Dharahara would also have two elevators.

Nepal Communist Party (NCP) Co-chairperson Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Minister of Defence Ishwor Pokhrel and Minister of Home Affairs Ram Bahadur Thapa were also present during the ceremony.

Reconstruction of the tower had gained momentum from October first week after GIETC-RAMAN J/V, a Nepal-China joint venture company, bagged the contract for reconstruction of the iconic tower at the cost of Rs 3.45 billion.

The new Dharahara will look like the old one, but will be built using modern technology. The project will cover an area of 22 ropani for which the NRA will acquire around 15 ropani of the General Post Office and additional three ropani of Sundhara and few other plots owned by Guthi Sansthan. An underground basement will also be made in the area for parking vehicles.

The 18-storey tower was built by the first prime minister of Nepal Bhimsen Thapa in 1825. The tower was destroyed in the earthquake of 1934.