Quake victims yet to receive govt grant

Kavre, October 14

Around 12,000 earthquake victims are likely to be missed out on the list of those entitled to state housing grant in Kavre, given the fact that many of them don’t own any land at all while others don’t have land ownership certificate for their lands.

As per the statistics, around 11,000 families in the district don’t own land, meaning that they do not qualify for the housing grant provided by the government.

Around 1,000 other families in Bhumlutar and Phalante VDCs in the Koshipurba area don’t have land ownership documents.

“If the present guideline is followed, the 11,000 victims who don’t own land, those who have been living in Guthi or government lands, and the 1,000 victims who don’t have land ownership documents will not receive the housing grant,” said Chairperson of Land Rights Forum, Kavre Ram Bahadur Lama, adding that those families, however, have received winter allowance and assistance for erecting temporary shelters earlier.

“It is not just for victim families to be deprived of government grant out of technicalities,” Lama said, pledging to wage an agitation against the injustice. The forum said it will picket local administration office in Dhulikhel with the support of quake victims of Bhumlutar and Phalante in the first phase of agitation.

The 1,000 families of Bhumlutar and Phalante have not been able to procure land ownership certificates for their land for the last 42 years.

The families, however, have other documents including citizenship certificates, quake victim identity cards, and documents provided by technicians earlier acknowledging their beneficiary status for the housing grant.

The lack of the land ownership document has to do mainly with a dispute that led to the split of the then Pipaltar VDC into Bhumlutar and Phalante VDCs around four decades ago.

Meanwhile, only 25 per cent of quake victims in the district have received the first instalment of the housing grant so far, despite the government’s pledge that it would oblige all victims with the instalment by mid-September itself.

As per data of the District Development Committee, as many as 55,485 families have signed a contract for the housing grant in the district.