Bajura flood victims worried as housing tranche stalls

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By Our Correspondent,Bajura, May 17: Unable to receive the second tranche of the grant for the construction of their houses, Bajura flood victims are worried.   

Kalchu Nepali, a flood victim of Budhiganga Municipality-1 in Amkot, Bajura, has built a house after receiving the first tranche of Rs. 75,000, but the second installment continues to elude him. 

He said, “After we were told to build the house with the first tranche of the money, I built the house. But now, since the second installment has stalled, I am worried that I won’t be able to pay for the cost, much of it was promised to pay for once the second tranche is released.”  

In the fiscal year 2022/2023, both provincial and federal governments had agreed to provide him Rs. 500, 000 for the construction of a house and release the first tranche.

In accordance with the agreement, he received the first installment. However, he has not received the second one yet.

It was mentioned in the agreement that the local, provincial, and federal governments would provide him Rs. 4,2500 rupees once the construction of his house completed. 

Believing that they would easily get the promised money, they managed to persuade the businessman for cement, steel bars, and other materials and used it to build the house. But soon a problem emerged: the house was built in contrast with the design mandated by the housing grant programme. 

One day a technician team visited the village and instructed them to construct the house abiding by the guidelines. Nepali said that the second tranche was put on hold because it was not constructed as per the approved design. 

Shankar Nath, Chief Administrative Officer of Budhiganga Municipality, informed that the house was not built according to the design given by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Authority (NDRRMA).

He declared that there were 106 families affected by the flood and landslide in Amkot. An affected family receives about Rs. 500, 000 in housing grant – the amount that should be provided by 15 local authorities, 20 provincial authorities, and 65 percent by the federal government. 

Out of 106 households in Amkot, 85 had received the first installment. And of them, 18 had started house construction, of which six have completed.  

The constructed houses were also different from the design provided by the NDRRMA. Chief Nath said that the second tranche was withheld after the locals started building houses of their own preferences.

Bajura District Disaster Management Committee (BDDMC) informed that the second tranche of the fund was withheld for those who did not complete the construction of their houses according to the design. 

BDDMC Coordinator and Chief District Officer Pushkar Khadka said, “All the flood-and-landslide-affected individuals in Amkot were local residents. The housing programme was initiated specifically for Amkot.” 

He mentioned that those building their house in line with the prescribed guidelines and presents the documents approved by the technicians will be given the second installment, and that those not building a house even after receiving the first installment will have to return that amount.

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