Pokhara, November 22
Acute shortage of fuel caused by the blockade at Nepal-India border points along with the ongoing agitation in the plains have disrupted all development work in Kaski.
Kaski Local Development Officer Ramchandra Tiwari said the fuel crunch had hit more than 500 small and big projects in the district. He added that they had failed to deploy technicians for the projects whose contract agreements had been sealed.
The number of service seekers visiting the DDC has also dropped significantly. “DDC has failed to dispatch staffers to the field even as they are having a hard time reaching the office owing to the fuel crunch. In such a situation, all the projects and plans have been hit hard,” Tiwari added.
Narayan Prasad Shrestha, chief engineer at the Office of District Technicians, said the fuel shortage had halted excavation of sand, boulders and stones and disrupted all development work. He added that the fuel crunch had also disrupted field observations conducted by technicians.
An agreement was signed to build a motorable bridge over Harpan Khola six months ago. The work, however, is yet to begin.
As many as 12 motorable bridges are scheduled to begin in the district this year.
Six tenders have been issued, but very few have taken the forms.
The fuel shortage is most likely to halt work on rural roads in Sarangkot and Naudanda of Kaski funded by World Bank.
LDO Tiwari said fuel crunch had disrupted various projects worth Rs 60 million. Besides paper work, all other works have been hit hard. DDC Land Revenue Sub-department Chief Madhav Timilsina said paper work related to planning of various projects was under way. He said his office had sent letters to all the line agencies to participate in the workshop on pre-planning scheduled to be held within three months.
In the first month of the new fiscal, the price list of construction materials is fixed, which is applicable throughout that year. This year, however, it is unsure if the materials can be purchased at the fixed rate after the blockade is lifted as the prices of construction materials have soared.
A version of this article appears in print on November 23, 2015 of The Himalayan Times.