The government has said that it may acquire any kind of private or institutional property in the course of distributing relief to earthquake victims in the 12 disaster districts.
Speaking at a press meet at Singha Durbar on Wednesday, Minister for Information and Communications Minendra Rijal said that the government has also decided that it could prohibit any activities affecting rescue rescue and salvage operations in these districts. The government has declared within and outside Kathmandu valley, which are most affected by the devastating earthquake on Saturday and Sunday, as district in a state of crisis.
“The government can acquire any kind of personal or institutional property, including food, clothing, medicines or construction equipment, and distribute these to the disaster victims,” said Rijal.
The government has also decided to requisition private and institutional property temporarily for disaster rescue and relief purposes. The government has likewise decided to penalize anyone found to be involved in black-marketing. Similarly, it has directed the Dairy Development Corporation to resume purification and distribution of milk products and Kalimati Vegetable and Fruit Market to resume to operations as before. It has also decided to mobilize tankers of KUKL as well as private firms to distribute drinking water to the quake victims.
At the press meet, Rijal said the government is planning to extend the closure period for schools even after mid-May and of the universities for a few more weeks, with a view to letting the situation return to normal. The government has claimed that the situation in Kathmandu valley has turned normal from Wednesday as the number of quake after-shocks has subsided.
Admitting that the government is still lacking in the provision of rescue and relief to victims Rijal urged people from all walks of life to coordinate with and assist the government in this task.
“It has been difficult for rescue workers and government officials to reach some areas by surface route, so we have decided to mobilize more helicopters in the hill districts,” he said.
Government has said that rescue operations around the Chho-Rolpa area has been difficult due to the bad weather.
It has also decided to mobilize teams of foreign rescue experts in the most affected districs.
As of Wednesday, 400,000 people have left the Valley fearing that there could be of an outbreak of epidemic.
The government released Rs 1.50 billion for relief work from the Prime Minister’s Natural Disaster Relief Fund, Wednesday. According to Minister Rijal, the government would be distributing relief through the district administration offices and also make use of political mechanisms and other government and non-government organizations for the purpose.