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Implementation of Act related to right to housing gets affected without regulations



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By Purna Prasad Mishra, Kathmandu, Jan 3: Failure of bringing regulations related to the right to housing has made it difficult to implement its act, 2075 that was issued three years ago. Resultantly, people have been deprived of their right to housing. Legal hurdles without its regulations have made the matter worse, it has been said.    

Efforts were underway to table the drafted regulations at the Ministry of Urban Development before presenting them at the Cabinet, said the ministry's spokesperson Bishnu Prasad Sharma. The Department of Urban Development and Building Construction has assisted in this regard, he said.    

It took longer to prepare the draft due to the lockdown and restrictions imposed to stem the COVID-19 and also there was a change of the minister, spokesperson Sharma said. The Regulations has been drafted under the coordination of the Chief of the Housing, Building and Planning Section at the Ministry. The work of taking approval from the Ministries concerned like the Ministry of Law, the Ministry of Finance, among other ministries, has been over.    

The right to housing has been enshrined in the Constitution of Nepal, 2015 as a fundamental right of the citizen.    

Advocate Raju Prasad Chapagain, who is working in the sector of right to housing, said the Regulation would clarify several work procedures and make the implementation aspect of the Act easier.    

"The implementation of this fundamental right (the right to housing) has been impeded in the absence of the related Regulations despite the passage of three years since the Act was enacted. It is regrettable that the Regulations is not enacted yet even though three years have passed by since the Act was enacted," he said.    

According to him, one cannot knock the Supreme Court or the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC)'s door for the protection of one's right to housing due to the absence of the Regulations.    

The Ministry has implemented several programmes for the execution of the right to housing. The People's Housing Programme, which was implemented by the Ministry in the past, is now being implemented by the provincial governments since Fiscal Year 2019/20.    

Similarly, the Ministry has said the Safe Citizen Housing Programme and the Integrated Settlement Development Programme are also in the implementation phase. The Integrated Settlement Development Programme was implemented in the Fiscal Year 2019/20 with the objective of developing integrated settlements each in Rasuwa, Kaski, Kapilbastu, Jajarkot, Banke, Udayapur and Saptari.