The total number of private housing reconstruction grant beneficiaries has been maintained at 858,282 as of July 1. They are entitled to housing grant of Rs 300,000 each.

According to a recent report published by the National Reconstruction Authority, grant agreement has been signed with 818,624 (95.4 per cent) beneficiaries.

Of them, 816,670 (99.8 per cent), 727,328 (88.8 per cent) and 665,233 (81.3 per cent) have received the first, second and third tranches of the grant. As per the progress report, 611,241 (74.7 per cent) of the beneficiaries, who signed the agreement, have reconstructed their houses, while the houses of 146,153 (17.9 per cent) beneficiaries are under construction.

For private housing retrofitting, there are 53,958 beneficiaries eligible to receive a grant of Rs 100,000 each. Of them, 45,814 (84.9 per cent) have signed the grant agreement and 45,781 (84.8 per cent) received the amount.

Last week, an executive committee meeting of the NRA had requested all the remaining beneficiaries to receive the final tranche of the private housing grant by mid-November.

The meeting also called upon all reconstruction and retrofitting beneficiaries to submit application to the local governments concerned to receive the grant.

According to the NRA, the applicants will have to fill out a commitment form and abide by the criteria and deadline set by the NRA for reconstruction of their houses.

They are also required to produce a recommendation letter of the ward office concerned.

After receiving the recommendation, the district offices of the NRA will facilitate signing the agreement or provide the remaining tranche as per the decision of the district facilitation committee. The NRA has also decided to release the remaining instalment of the housing grant to those beneficiaries, who agree to improve the already-rebuilt houses as per the suggestions given by technician complying with the government criteria. These beneficiaries should sign a commitment letter to acquire the construction completion certificate from the local government after making improvements as per the recommendations of the technician. They will have to be ready to face action from the NRA and the local body if they fail to abide by the criteria after receiving the grant, said an NRA official.

The NRA has stepped up its efforts to complete the remaining tasks after a meeting of its steering committee recently held under the chairmanship of Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli decided to discontinue reconstruction works, beginning mid-November.

A version of this article appears in the print on July 7 2021, of The Himalayan Times.