Saturday, January 12, 2008

Melamchi water project-hit seek aid [in Kabhre]

Razen Manandhar
Kavre, January 9:

While the families affected by the Melamchi Water Supply Project (MWSP) in Sindhupalchowk are getting various assistance, those who live in neighbouring district Kavre are still left unattended.

The project had identified five VDCs of Kavre — - Gairibisaina Deupur, Mahadevsthan, Chandeni Mandan, Jaishithok and Panchkhal — as affected areas. But the residents in the VDCs are given peanuts and their demands have been neglected, locals said. These villages are the gateways in order to reach the MWSP’s main site.

“Earlier, the MWSP has assured that villagers would be compensated. But now, we are left high and dry,” said Krishna Prasad Dotel, a local of Sipaghat who is to receive compensation for his over one ropani of field.

“We should get over Rs 1.2 million as per the land valuation price of the project. But it refused to give us compensation because our land was excluded from the Department of Road’s documents,” he said.

Villagers, after their demands were ignored, have started seizing the vehicles belonging to the MWSP. A project vehicle is now under the local people’s control.

“We were forced to do this as officers at the project never listened our voice,” said Yognath Dotel, the vice-chairman of the local Prabhabit Chhetra Mandan Upatyaka Bikas Samiti.

He said the MWSP has identified a total of 53 VDCs as possible affected areas by the project and demand that the project provide necessary relief for the residents of the five VDCs in Kavre. Of over a 100 affected families, only 45 has received compensation, he said.

He said the MWSP should provide them the due compensation to the residents of the five VDCs and black top the 26km road linking Panchkhal Zerokilo to Melamchi Bazaar.

“Various programmes related to health and education should be launched in the areas affected by the project,” Dotel said.
[ KATHMANDU, JANUARY 10, 2008, Poush 26, 2064 ]