KATHMANDU, Jan 3: The Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS), the body entrusted with the responsibility to carry out survey for identifying earthquake victims eligible for the housing grant, has said that the damage assessment survey in the remaining 17 earthquake-affected districts will be completed only by the first week of February, meaning that the quake victims will still have to wait longer to receive the housing grant.
Making public its reconstruction and rehabilitation related time-bound work plans for the next five years, the NRA had stated that it would complete the damage assessment survey in the remaining 17 quake-hit districts by December 30 and complete distribution of the first tranche of the grant to the eligible victims by February.
But the CBS has been able to begin survey only in five out of the 17 districts so far and, according to CBS officials, it will take a month to complete the survey.
“We have begun survey in just five districts so far. It will take more than a week to deploy engineers to the remaining 12 districts. Taking all this in view, the survey in the districts will be completed only by the first week of February,” Rudra Suwal, deputy director general of the CBS, said.
He said that the CBS has mobilized as many as 100 engineers in various villages of the five districts where the survey has begun. The remaining 17 districts where the government has yet to begin the survey are Myagdi, Lamjung, Tanahun, Syangja, Solukhumbu, Parbat, Kaski, Khotang, Bhojpur, Sankhuwasabha, Gulmi, Chitwan, Nawalparasi, Palpa, Arghakhanchi, Baglung and Dhankuta.
“We have completed all our preparations to deploy additional 105 engineers to various villages of the remaining districts to carry out the survey. We are doing our best to deploy the engineers as soon as possible,” he said. The CBS is mobilizing altogether 524 engineers for the survey in the 17 less severely-affected districts.
The survey is the key basis to identify the victims whose houses were damaged by the 2015 earthquake and therefore eligible for the grant assistance of Rs 300,000 each being provided by the government for reconstructing their houses.
According to CBS, the engineers will carry out damage assessment survey of around 130,000 houses in the 17 districts.
Acting spokesperson of NRA Bhisma Kumar Bhusal said that the delay in making logistical arrangements caused delay in the survey on time.