Gorkha, June 23: Saila Gurung of Laprak in Gorkha is a beneficiary of the integrated settlement in Gumsipakha. "We are now preparing to shift to the new house," said Gurung. "Better days are coming."
Gurung has been living in a vulnerable settlement in Laprak, along with more than 500 other households. People of this area are hopeful as the construction of the houses in the integrated settlement in Gumsipakha is now at final stage of construction.
The Non-Resident Nepali Association (NRNA) is constructing 573 houses in Gumsipakha for earthquake survivors living in vulnerable settlements in Laprak. Outer structures of most of the houses have already been constructed while toilets and racks inside the houses are currently being constructed.
During the inspection of the construction of the integrated settlement, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) Sushil Gyewali said the handover process of the settlement will begin after demarcation of plots, and reconstruction of other infrastructures, including toilets, are constructed.
President of the NRNA Bhawan Bhatta said the settlements would be handed over in collaboration and coordination with everyone by paying attention to the sensitivity of the earthquake survivors.
The NRNA has taken support of the local community and Nepal Army for the reconstruction. Every home-beneficiary has already contributed 8-tractor loads of rocks, 40 sacs of sand, and are supporting 50 timbers of wood at present. Toilet construction is also going on with participation of the local community. The NRNA said the local community have been asked to support so that they will develop a sense of ownership of their homes.
Forty Nepal Army personnel are currently working at the construction site, according to Manoj Gautam of Nepal Army. "Nepal Army has supported in infrastructure development, besides providing necessary masons."
"If supply of timber is smooth one team can put flakes in two houses in one day," said Tek Bahadur Gurung, a carpenter. "So, it will take few days to complete the work."
Some have doubted whether all earthquake survivors will shift to the new settlement as the new settlement is in higher altitude than the old settlement. However, Chairman of Dharche Rural Municipality Santosh Gurung said that they could use it as winter home and summer home as it will get too cold in the new settlement in winter. He says, people will be free from risk and can use the house as per their requirement.
But teacher Badri Prasad Adhikari has a different opinion. He said, "Cherpu river is cutting (the old settlement) from below, rocks are falling from above. There will be landslide in monsoon. For these reasons, people will shift to the new settlement."
As preparations are going on to hand-over the settlement, 42 households have filed grievances saying their names were missing. Rohan Gurung said, although he wants to move to the new settlement he might not get that opportunity. "My name was missing in the list that came from the center. We have filed a grievance again. I am sure our voice will be heard," he hoped.
Ward chair Raj Gurung said, grievance process has been advanced as no one should be left out.