NRA meeting approves additional housing grant of Rs 100,000

GYAN P NEPANE

KATHMANDU, Sept 27: The National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) has finally decided to provide additional Rs 100,000 in housing grant for quake victims whose homes were destroyed during last year’s earthquakes.

The NRA’s steering committee meeting on Monday endorsed a proposal to provide the additional amount with the existing housing grant of Rs 200,000. This decision has come as per the announcement made by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal immediately after becoming head of the government. The steering committee, which is headed by the prime minister, is represented by various other ruling and opposition parties and several ministries.

According to NRA Chief Executive Officer Sushil Gyewali, the meeting also decided that the victims will get Rs 150,000 in second tranche and Rs 100,000 in third as per the new criteria.

The government has already provided the first tranche of Rs 50,000 as housing grant to 393,677 earthquake-hit families so far in 12 most-affected districts including Lalitpur. The government, however, is yet to start distributing the amount to the locals of Kathmandu and Bhaktapur districts though these two districts are also among 14 districts worst hit by the earthquakes.

CEO Gyewali informed that the government will provide final tranche to victims only if they build either a toilet, a bio-gas plant or install solar power for their family use.

“The meeting has decided to increase Rs 100,000 for victims and it will be distributed in the final [third] installment and will be distributed only if follow the criteria to build toilet, bio-gas plant or use solar power,” said Gyewali.

Prime Minister Dahal chaired the committee meeting held at Singha Durbar on Monday.

“The steering committee has already made a draft of working procedure for distributing the additional money,” said the CEO. “We will forward it to the next cabinet meeting for approval.”

He, however, informed that they will discuss with the finance ministry about sources for the budget necessary to arrange additional money as promised by the government. “We will also start discussion with the donor agencies for the budget,” he added.

PM Dahal also directed the NRA to ensure that those households who haven’t got even the first tranche of Rs 50,000 will be given the amount before Dashain.

First appeared in Republica national daily

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