Govt teams to identify houses to be demolished

Govt teams to identify houses to be demolished

The government has formed technical committees in every village development committee and municipality to ascertain whether the buildings damaged in the April 25 earthquake and its aftershocks need to be demolished.

Though it is exactly not clear how many buildings are unsafe for living, it is estimated that the number could be in hundreds. The committee will examine the buildings based on the applications filed by their owners, neighbours or the government officials.

Laxmi Prasad Dhakal, the spokesperson of Home Ministry, said a high-level cross-ministerial panel will oversee the demolition and debris management works.

“The task of identifying risky structures has begun. The technical committees will examine the houses and recommend their owners what should be done,” Dhakal said.

The government has also prepared a guideline for the demolition of unsafe structures. According to the guideline, owners themselves are required to demolish their houses . In case of refusal, the Chief District Officer has the right to demolish the concerned building; the expense incurred in the process will have to be paid by the house owners themselves.

Most of the unsafe houses outside Kathmandu have been pulled down by their owners.

Devendra Lamichhane, the chief district officer of Dolakha, said the houses that were damaged in the quake are being demolished at the initiative of their owners.

“We are currently preparing the final report on the damage caused by the quake. It will take a few weeks to complete the report as there are 48 VDCs and two municipalities in Dolakha,” Lamichhane said.

In Kathmandu , one official said, non-compliance from the house owners and the lack of technical workforce and equipment, among others, have delayed the demolition task. The Kathmandu District Administration Office has said it does not have the equipment to demolish the buildings that are over three-storey. Around 900 houses have been demolished in the earthquake -affected areas so far.

Source: eKantipur