Reconstruction Mega Campaign begins from Bungmati

Kathmandu, Jan 16: More than eight months of the devastating earthquake which claimed thousands of lives and destroyed large number of physical structures, the reconstruction mega campaign kicked off from Bungmati, one of the historically and archeologically important places in the Kathmandu Valley.

Inaugurating the mega campaign, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli said through the reconstruction drive, quake resistant structures would be build but without deviating from their cultural and archaeological values.

Government will accelerate the reconstruction works by providing consultation on building quake resistant structures, preparing designs and providing technical assistance, the PM said, adding that even the advanced information technology providing prior signal of the earthquake would be installed in many places.

The initial phase of the reconstruction mega campaign would complete in the coming Baisakh 13, the first anniversary of the devastating earthquake.

According to the PM, monitoring of the reconstruction activities would be conducted time and again to check the corruption.

On the occasion, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Physical Infrastructure and Transport, Bijay Kumar Gachchhadar, said unity among the political parties as they were during the promulgation of the constitution was essential for the reconstruction too.

“Political issues can be left aside, to accelerate the reconstruction drive in the country. It won’t be good to squabble over the reconstruction activities,” he added.

Home Minister Shakti Bahadur Basnet said the beginning of reconstruction must be innovative. It is time for us to learn lessons from the devastating quake, he stressed.

Minister for Peace and Reconstruction, Yeknath Dhakal, said the Ministry would extend constructive assistance to the mega reconstruction.

Similarly, Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, Anand Prasad Pokhrel, said the reconstruction of the cultural structures would not deviate from its early status. There would be no fund crunch for the reconstruction, he assured.

Chief Executive Officer of the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA), Sushil Gyawali said while constructing the physical structures again, their economic, social and cultural value must be heeded.

At the programme in the presence of the PM, a letter of agreement was signed by Executive Officer of Karyabinayak municipality, Rohit Pokhrel; Coordinator of Bungmati Reconstruction Committee, Prem Bhakta Maharjan; and Padma Sundar Joshi of the UN Habitat.

The devastating earthquake had claimed the lives of seven persons, and destroyed 851 houses and several archaeological and religious places in the Bungmati area alone.