The Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) has started a campaign to recover encroached public land from ward 3 in Kathmandu. The Mayor, Bidya Sundar Shakya launched the campaign by breaking a wall of Kathmandu Hotel in Maharajgunj on Monday. The hotel had encroached upon six annas (191 sq. m) of public land.
The ward chairman of KMC-3, Deepak KC, ward representatives and media persons were also present on the occasion, supporting the campaign to recover encroached public land.
The Government had identified 83 open spaces in the three districts of Kathmandu Valley—Kathmandu, Lalitpur, and Bhaktapur—as evacuation and temporary rescue sites in case of emergencies in 2013. But, in the wake of the April 2015, earthquake, it became clear that Kathmandu Valley, in particular, does not have enough safe spaces for its residents during and in the aftermath of a large-scale disaster.
The KMC believes that land grabbing is one of the main reasons why the city does not have enough open spaces. That is why the metropolis has instructed all its 32 wards to recover encroached public land. KMC-3 is all set to recover around 200 ropanis (152,622 sq. m) of encroached public land; 136 ropanis (69,188 sq. m) of the land has been encroached upon in Ranibari.
Chairman KC said, “The ward office has already allocated NPR. 20 million to build a park in Ranbari. We are currently coordinating with the locals there to recover encroached public land.”
According to the KMC Chief Executive Officer, Dhani Ram Sharma, individuals who try to resist the metropolis’s attempt to retake the encroached land will face appropriate action. He said, “There shall be no compromise. We request all the citizens of Kathmandu Valley to cooperate.” The KMC does not know exactly how much of the city’s public land has been taken over illegally.
The Mayor has announced that the team would be relying upon the citizens to identify the illegally occupied land.
Shakya said, “We have started this campaign from ward-3. And I request every resident of the metropolis to inform us about public land encroachment.”
News and Features Image: The Kathmandu Post