Bhaktapur-Nagarkot road: locals bearing snail-paced progress

January 08, 2018

The Himalayan Times, 8 Jan 2018

Locals and tourists are having a tough time as the Bhaktapur-Nagarkot road, which had to be constructed in two years, has not yet completed even after four years of the convening of construction.

The expansion of 16-km main road stretching from Kamal Vinayak to Nagarkot via Bhatkekopati has hit the snag.

According to the contract, the Shailung Construction Pvt Ltd would complete the construction by mid-July 2016. The construction works had started on June 2014. However, the construction has not gained momentum.

The road expansion drive had begun with the financial assistance of Rs 280 million from Exim Bank India.

As of now only 40 per cent of the works have been completed. The gravel laying and blacktopping are yet to be carried out in the 16-km road section.

Engineer at Shailung Construction Pvt Ltd Bijaya Prajapati, however, pledged to complete all construction works within the coming five months.

Delay in the road expansion of the tourism hub, Nagarkot, has also hit hard the tourism entrepreneurs. The rampant excavation has made the road congested and dusty, said Gokul Lamichhane, a tourism entrepreneur.

“Tourists and travel agencies enquire about the status of potholes on the road before going to Nagarkot from Kathmandu. Most of the tourists have cancelled their programme at Nagarkot after knowing the sorry state of affairs of the road section”, he added.

Another tourism entrepreneur Badri Maak also shared the same story. “The influx of tourists has declined by 50 per cent with the deteriorating condition of the road leading to Nagarkot.”

Locals are not only bearing the brunt of dillydally in the construction of road but have also come across different diseases. The dusty environment has toughened the lives of locals, said Som Sharma Bajgain, a local journalist.

It is due to sheer negligence of the contractor that the road widening drive is not progressing anymore, locals blamed.