Kathmandu, January 12
The KP Oli government has approved a budget of Rs 49.33 billion for the reconstruction of infrastructure that were damaged in the earthquakes that rocked the country in 2015, leaving behind a trail of death and devastation.
Suresh Man Shrestha, secretary, National Planning Commission, told Onlinekhabar: The budget is meant for implementation of reconstruction programmes that 15 ministries have floated.
“For the current fiscal, the government had earmarked Rs 74 billion for the reconstruction work,” Shrestha said. The planning commission approved a budget of Rs 49.33 billion, about five months into the current fiscal, he reasoned.
After the budget speech, government should spend budget only after the planning commission’s approval. That is the norm.
Shrestha said the recently-formed Reconstruction Authority will implement the approved programmes. The government had tasked the planning commission with the reconstruction works till RA’s formation.
At an international donors’ conference held six and a half months ago, donors had pledged four trillion rupees in loan and grant for Nepal. Madhu Kumar Marasini, joint-secretary at the Finance Ministry’s Foreign Grants Coordination Division, said authorities have already reached agreements worth Rs 91 billion.
The RA said there’s no dearth of funds for reconstruction works, with the planning commission approving programmes mentioned in the budget and agreements on one-fourth of donor-pledged funds already reached.
It is launching what it calls a mega reconstruction campaign from January 16, 2016 till April 24, 2016. The RA meeting held on Monday decided that President Bidhya Bhandari and Prime Minister KP Oli will kickstart the campaign from Ranipokhari and Bungmati.