Certain Power Still Remain With The Centre: Ashok Kumar Byanju, Mayor-Dhulikhel Municipality-Kavre

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What was the first work after winning the election?

-We had many things in mind. First we prepared the ‘Vision Paper based on Integrated Urban Development  Plan(IUDP). Around 16 topics were finalized as how to develop Dhulikhel in 25 years. DPR of ten have been already done. Also, the strategic plans for tourism and agriculture were made. Whatever we did there was a need to make them women friendly, child friendly and easily usable for people with special needs. Basic needs like drinking water, road construction and repair works are highly

considered under development category. Under SDG goal, the villages like Devitar and Dhitalgaun have been selected for the same. We have plans like ‘One house one tap’ program too. We have been running 7 projects for clean drinking water so far and planning next 7 next year.

What do you mean by child friendly?

-Well, one crore rupees budget was allotted for the children’s program in this fiscal year. So far 20 achievements have been acquired in under the program. Clothes were distributed through Dhulikhel hospital.  The simplest physical  structures like the latches of the door to be placed in the range of the height of a child and keeping the urinary pot at the proper level in the toilet are some of the things considered in the schools of Dhulikhel these days. The schools are reformed as per the need and requirement of the children. Also other things which are directly connected with the psychology of the children are considered. Every village will now have a park, which will be benefiting the children first. Even the senior citizens can come here and relax.

What about Eco-friendly tourism?

-Yeah, the climate change is hampering our beautiful mountains like Dhulikhel too. We have been distributing the fruit plants to the local people at subsidy. We have been encouraging people to plant more and more trees. Also, we have been encouraging people to continue with their bio-friendly agriculture, using less chemicals. We need to consume whatever is produced in our farms. Some of our traditional things need to be preserved. This will make our Dhulikhel green. In coordination with the WWF, the research work regarding the environment of the region is underway. Water recharging system is being introduced. There are four water treatment plants here. The treatment work is also given importance. Proper garbage management is also done, protecting the environment.

Tell us about  the roads?

-A Consumer Committee has been formed to look into the construction of roads around Dhulikhel.  The Dhulikhel Raviopi Devitar road section, Shanku Batase road section, Kavre Bhanjyang  BP Araniko road section along others are in the list. The repairing and other development works are also in full speed.

So where is the most budget used in?

-Of course physical infrastructures like roads, health, education along others. Tourism destinations are also looked into. The trails in the region and view points are taken care of. The ‘one thousand steps’ has more five crore rupees budget. Construction of Dreamland  projects, botanical garden and other attractions  are underway.

Tell something about education?

-In collaboration with the Kathmandu University, we have been focusing on multi-learning system. The students right from the primary level should be taught through the objects instead of making maximum use of black board. We are focusing the student need to be given natural environment with the growing urbanization. They need to know what the natural processes are. There is proper supervision in between. Special provisions for dalit and economically backward students has been made. We have free wifi in 24 locations, so that the people make proper use of internet technology. We have 22 seats reserved for scholarship MBBS, Dental science along with others.

How about agriculture?

-There are 6 projects in the sector for farmers. There are special efforts to preserve the natural resources. The concept to make the best use of the alternative energy is in the full swing. Also healthwise, a 500 bed hospital of medicity is being built in Dhulikhel.  The Integrated land use plan has been followed. Similarly, in drinking water too the Kavre drinking water project has been commenced with the budget of 114 million rupees besides other works.

Is there any work division ?

– We have formed different parishads or councils like the women council, indigenous, dalit, youth etc. They work together in their respective sectors. They don’t receive any salary but only allowances for their work.  Their suggestions are important and are considered as per the subjects. The women council is headed by Lal Tara Adhikari  from ward no.11.

What are the challenges?

-The Central Government is not willing to give certain rights to the local units. The center should allow us to exercise the power which are guaranteed by the Constitution. Certain power still remain with the center. The offices of the  Education and Forestry are still located under the central mechanism. The employee issues are also not solved properly.

Your responsibility as the Federation President ?

-We have duties like to make the people’s representation strong, sharing experiences between the units which are comparatively slower. The remote municipalities or municipalities  are still at the learning stage most of them. The smarter one successful in their works are followed by others. Also finding international donors; as the budget is not enough is an important task. Best 100 works of the local units across the country have been selected which are very good examples for others. Also, the study or field tours have been managed to have the exposure of the model places which are highly regarded.

What about the media communication?

-The decisions of all the meetings and councils are made public. As per the demand, we have been also facing the media from time to time; informing  the public  about the development works and new projects. Most of the works have been done through Consumer Committees formed. The laws for the local level have been formed, almost 29 of them. We strongly believe in transparency. The people should know about the development work and issues related to them. Everybody need to joint hands in all the social and developmental tasks.