September 1, 2020 | Investopaper
As soon as India imposed blockade, the government had put forward a plan to build a short gorge-Trishuli-Malung-Syafrubesi-Rasuwagadhi road connecting another neighboring China as an alternative market. However, the construction of the road has not been able to pick up speed as soon as the blockade was lifted. The government had put forward the plan with the objective of constructing 82 kilometers of roads within two years to increase economic and trade relations with China and facilitate trade in the fiscal year 2072/73.
But the construction has not been completed yet. At present, due to the dispute over compensation, the project has not made the expected physical progress. The government has listed it as a project of national pride.
The overall physical progress of the project is 58 percent. The total expenditure has reached Rs 4.38 billion so far. Rs 2.88 billion has been spent on road and bridge construction and Rs 1.5 billion on compensation. The construction of this project has been started by dividing it into three sections. The Galchi-Malung section has 46 kilometers, Malung-Syafrubesi 19 kilometers and Syafrubesi-Rasuwagadhi 19 kilometers. So far, 21 kilometers of the project has been blacktopped which falls in the Galchi-Malung section.
The government had allocated a total budget of Rs 15.50 billion for the project- Rs9.5 billion for the construction of roads and bridges and the remaining Rs. 6 billion for compensation. A total of 82 km long and 30 m wide road boundary is being constructed. Recently, the government has put forward a plan to extend this section through Galchi-Malekhu-Bhandara to Thori as a Nepal-India-China trilateral transit route.
The government had allocated Rs 1.57 billion for the project in the last fiscal year. The project stated that the financial progress was 1.22 billion or 59 percent in the last fiscal year. Last year’s physical progress was 62 percent. The project had targeted to pave 20 kilometers of roads in the last fiscal year. However, it managed to blacktop 16 kilometers despite the lockdown.
Work is underway to blacktop 21 kilometers in the current fiscal year. The government has allocated Rs 1.37 billion for the project in the current fiscal year.