Anup Ojha, The Kathmandu Post, March 06, 2018
Kathmandu-The Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) has started a drive to recover the encroached public land from ward 3.
Mayor Bidya Sundar Shakya launched the drive by breaking a wall of Kathmandu Hotel in Maharajgunj on Monday.
The hotel has encroached upon six annas (191 sq m) of public land.
“We have started this campaign from ward. I request every resident of the metropolis to inform us about public land encroachment,” said Shakya.
The ward chairman of KMC-3, Deepak KC, ward representatives and media-persons were also present on the occasion.
In 2013, 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. But in the wake of the April 2015 earthquake, it became clear that Kathmandu in particular did 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 a part of the reason why the city does not have enough open spaces.
The metropolis has instructed all its 32 wards to reclaim the encroached public land. KMC-3 is set to recover around 200 ropanis (152,622 sq m) of encroached land; 136 ropanis (69,188 sq m) of the land has been encroached upon in Ranibari.
“The ward office has already allocated Rs 20 million to build a park in Ranibari. We are currently coordinating with the locals there to recover the encroached public land,” said ward chairman KC.
KMC Chief Executive Officer Dhani Ram Sharma said, the metropolis said individuals who try to resist the metropolis’s attempt to retake the encroached land will face appropriate action.
“There shall be no compromise. We request all the citizens to cooperate,” said Sharma. The KMC does not know exactly how much of the city’s public land has been taken over illegally.
Mayor Shakya said they will be relying on the citizens to identify the illegally occupied land.