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Highway project pays out Rs560 million in compensation

   April 10, 2019        891        KRISHNA THAPA

The Galchhi-Trishuli-Rasuwagadhi highway project has distributed Rs560 million in compensation to 339 landowners whose lands were taken away to build the road. The construction of the highway, which offers the shortest link between India and China through Nepal, has been designated a national pride project.

Project official Dambar Bahadur Karki said landowners whose property lay on the highway alignment from Kolputar-5 to Jiling-8 of Belkotgadi Municipality had been reimbursed for their loss. “Nearly 500 other landowners remain to be compensated.”

The project has published a public notice announcing the distribution of compensation to the affected people along the Dhunge-Gorkhutar-Betrawati-Shantibazaar and Mailung sections, but they have not received payment.

Last January, residents who have been claiming compensation from the government for the expansion work of the Galchhi-Trishuli Road had launched a protest by calling a shutdown in Nuwakot district. The project said that compensation distribution had been delayed due to procedural delays by the Survey and Land Revenue departments.

Once the 82-km Galchhi-Trishuli-Syabrubesi-Rasuwagadhi Highway is completed, it will offer a crucial trade route between India with China.

The government is upgrading and constructing the 46-km Galchhi-Mailung section of the highway. This section will have 11 two-lane bridges.

The government had planned to complete the upgradation and construction of the Galchhi-Mailung section by March.

Last May, the Nepal Army completed the track opening task of the 18-km Mailung-Syabrubesi section and handed it over to the project. The army started the construction work in April 2015 and the track was opened on May 20, 2018.

Since then, the Department of Roads has been working on widening the road. Nepal and China signed an agreement several years ago to upgrade the highway section connecting the two countries.

In December 2016, Nepal and China signed a Rs15.7 billion (RMB 1 billion) bilateral assistance agreement, and a portion of the funds will be used to repair and improve the Syabrubesi-Rasuwagadhi section of the highway. The Syabrubesi-Rasuwagadhi section of the 82-km highway is being improved with Chinese aid into an 8-metre-wide, double-lane and all-weather highway. The Roads Department is improving the rest of the highway.

The Mailung-Syabrubesi road to China is 30 kilometers shorter than the existing Betrawati-Kalikasthan-Dhunche-Syabrubesi road.

The Kathmandu Post