Quake victims deprived of services

Quake victims deprived of services

Earthquake survivors in the district have been facing difficulties due to absence of VDC secretary in their own villages.

The local body officials stay in the district headquarters and rarely visit the concerned VDCs. Mithu Pariyar, a quake survivor in Darbung, said she was compelled to stay in a hotel at district headquarters for two days as she could not meet VDC secretary.

Another quake victim, Rudra Karkheti of Dhuwakot, said the secretary of his VDC did not even his receive his phone calls. He said many service seekers from rural areas have to wander around the district headquarters looking for VDC officials. Manju Dhakal of Haramtari in the district headquarters said dozens of people from remote villages have been facing hardships on a daily basis.

“We have been troubled as many people from villages arrive here asking for mobile phone numbers their VDC secretaries,” she said, adding that a majority of VDC secretaries in the district have opened their offices in Haramtari area.

There are 60 VDCs
in the district and offices of most of these local bodies are set up in hotels or rented rooms in the district headquarters, an official at the District Development
Office said.

Quake survivors need recommendation letters from their VDC secretary to receive most government services
but they are deprived of such documents due to the carelessness of the VDC secretaries. Locals said the VDC secretaries go to villages only to hold meetings, discussions and distribute social security allowances.
After receiving many complaints regarding the activities of VDC secretaries in the district, the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) had also sought clarification from the District Development Committee (DDC). “Though the CIAA asked clarification a year ago, the VDC secretaries have not gone to their villages,” locals said.

The DDC officials, meanwhile, said their daily activities have been affected due to the lack of human resources. Local Development Officer Premraj Giri said they are compelled to allocate
responsibility of three VDCs to a secretary.

Meanwhile in Kavre, 26, 000 quake-hit families are still awaiting relief though the government directed local authorities to distribute the amount within January 8. Officials at the District Administration Office (DAO) said they are yet to receive Rs 250 million from the Ministry of Finance for distribution among quake survivors. DAO Accountant Bhim Pokhrel said they are yet to distribute winter relief to quake-affected families IN Panauti, Panchkhal, Banepa and Pokharinarayan areas.

Source: The Kathmandu Post