Khotang, May 21
Gurudhoj Khadka, an earthquake victim from Manebhajyang Rural Municipality in Khotang, has not received the second tranche of the housing grant provided by the government.
Khadka did not get the second instalment even after completing damp proof course (DPC) and thus completed the house construction with his own money. He said that he did not wait for the second instalment as the rainy season was just around the corner. “If I had waited for the government grant, I would have been compelled to sleep under the open sky,” he said.
Similarly, another quake victim Lok Bahadur Pariyar of Diprung Chuichumma Rural Municipality said that he was constructing the house with loan. “Construction work of my house is almost completed,” he added. Pariyar said that he did not get the second instalment even though he completed DPC on time.
Sita Thapa, a single woman, said that she could not complete her house for want of money as the government did not provide the second instalment of the grant.
No beneficiary in Khotang has received the second instalment of the grant even though they have already completed the DPC.
National Reconstruction Authority had distributed the first instalment amount to the quake victims of two municipalities and eight rural municipalities in the district last year. The victims said that Technical District Coordination Committee Secretariat had organised an orientation for engineers and technicians in a bid to provide the second and the third instalment of the housing grant two months ago, but in vain.
Information officer of District Coordination Committee, Khotang, Rabi Kiran Acharya said of the 8,443 households, 8,062 received the first instalment of the grant. He said that as many as 381 quake victims were deprived of the government grant. Ward Secretary of Sakela Rural Municipality Rabin Phuyal said that he had already recommended the names of the beneficiaries for the second instalment. “But the budget has not been released yet,” he added.
According to government data, as many as 13,799 houses were damaged in Khotang.
A version of this article appears in print on May 22, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.