By A Staff Reporter Kathmandu, Apr. 13: Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba on Tuesday said that integrated laws would be enacted to tackle the problems that may arise in urban infrastructure development in absence of such laws. Duplication in such legal provision related to urban infrastructure development would also be ended, Prime Minister Deuba, who is also the president of the ruling Nepali Congress, said while speaking at a consultative seminar held on formulating National Urban Policy, Urban Development Act and Utility Corridor Act.
Prime Minister Deuba stressed on the need for drafting an urban development bill comprising utility corridor to push forward the development works in a coordinated manner. He said that the government has planned to implement some roadmap projects in the upcoming fiscal year in some big cities of the country to translate the concept of national city policy and urban development into action.
Urban infrastructure development concept should be expanded to the hills and mountain regions to discourage unorganised and unmanaged migration of people from the hills to the Terai and the major city areas, he said. Terming Nepal as one of the fast urbanising countries in the world, PM Debua said although the government had been trying to control unmanaged urbanisation since the second five-year plan it had failed to develop cities as expected.
Expressing his disappointment at not being able to seek long-term solution to the solid waste generated in the Kathmandu Valley, he said that gas and electricity can be produced from solid waste. “To help us towards that endeavour, some foreign envoys have pledged needed support,” he added. He also said that the vacant and public land in the valley is in the possession of land mafias and that there will be neither public nor government land left in Kathmandu in future should this go unchecked.
Former Prime Minister and Chairman of CPN Maoist Centre Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ said that Nepal’s development programme should be taken forward in our own traditional model and practices, rather than copying other nation’s development formula based on mechanical process.
Similarly, Former Prime Minister and leader of CPN Unified Socialist Jhalanath Khanal said that time has come to seriously think about how to manage the growing urbanisation. Leader Khanal stressed on enacting long-term and effective laws while planning cities in ways that will not invite problems in the long run. Likewise, Minister for Home Affairs Bal Krishna Khand said the malpractice of constructing road by one office and then digging out by another must end and that infrastructural development should be taken to rural areas.
Minister for Communication and Information Technology Gyanendra Bahadur Karki said that rural and urban infrastructure development programmes should be implemented in a balanced and sustainable manner. Minister Karki stressed on enacting policy helping people stay in their own places rather than migrating elsewhere to control haphazard urbanisation.
Minister for Urban Development Ram Kumari Jhankri said that the government was facing a hard time to prevent encroachment of public lands, and that there should be proper coordination and communication among the concerned ministries like Drinking Water, Energy, Road, Communication and the Home for controlling unmanaged urbanisation and haphazard practice of digging roads.