– Kalika Khadka, KATHMANDU: Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has said that the primary duty of the government is to protect the life of citizens.
Addressing the nation on the occasion of the Nepali New Year 2078 BS from the Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers (OPMCM) in Singha Durbar this morning, the Prime Minister wished happiness, peace and prosperity to all Nepalis at home and abroad, and urged them to remain safe from the Covid-19 pandemic. “The government’s first dutu is to protect the life of the citizens and people’s life is prominent for the government. The schools can operate if lives are saved. Life comes first than the economy; the industries and factories can be run if human life is saved, but If life cannot be saved, then nothing operates,” he said. PM Oli stated that the government was carrying out works keeping safety of life in primary importance and even if the pandemic has comparatively impacted, it has caused less damage. He added that the agriculture has been good and success has been achieved in reducing the trade deficit. “Those who were on the path of violence have been brought to the peaceful way, there is no group carrying out violence at present. Now, the people have the sovereignty, there are only people and their mandate, which is the determining factor of politics. We have achieved big successes in this context,” he said. The PM stated that many conference halls were constructed in 2077 BS. In this connection, he mentioned the construction of a meditation centre in Lumbini with a capacity of accommodating 5,000 people and the construction of a conference centre with a capacity of 3,000 in Godawari and assembly halls were being built in many other places.
Works were forwarded for the construction of the Parliament Building last year alone in view of the lack of this facility for the people’s representatives to sit down and hold discussions even in this age of people’s representatives. Hope has risen among people. Prime Minister Oli reiterated that the government has worked in a way to raise hope among the people in the year 2077 BS.
“We have carried out works instilling hope among the people, and we will continue to do this work to instill hope and confidence in future as well,” he said, adding that every day five and half kilometres road is being constructed, houses are being built at the rate of at least 12 per day and the number of people getting various eight types of social security benefits is more than 3.06 million,” the PM added.
He said the social security allowance that was started from Rs 100 per month has reached Rs 100 per day now and this would be increased in the next budget. The contribution-based social security programme was started since November 26, 2019. Bridges are being constructed daily and they are being constructed from the east to the west of the country. The transit points have been opened and the Mid-hills highway is being constructed expeditious manner.
According to him, the construction of the Madan Bhandari highway is moving ahead in a speedy manner, works on expansion of the East-West highway were on and the Hulaki highway remains to be built at few places only. Exceptional works in reconstruction PM Oli mentioned that the Reconstruction Authority that was formed after the Gorkha Earthquake in 2015 has carried out the post-earthquake reconstruction works in a speedy manner. “The reconstructed Ranipokhari has been already inaugurated and the reconstruction of the Dharahara is almost completed and on the 24th of this month people would be able to see around the Kathmandu Valley from the top of this tower climbing with the help of elevator,” he added. Airports would be upgraded, night flights would be operated to some airports and the Tribhuvan International Airport has been refurbished and repaired in order to give a feeling of newness once passengers land in the airport. Stating that many schools have been rebuilt despite unfavourable conditions and the Durbar High School has been reconstructed and it has been inaugurated, he said preparations are being made to inaugurate on April 19 a reconstructed higher secondary school in Patandhoka constructed with Japanese assistance.
Melamchi water supply is no more daydream
Prime Minister Oli stated that supplying the water from the Melamchi Water Supply Project to homes in Kathmandu is not merely a daydream. “Some people mocked at saying supplying water from Melamchi in Kathmandu is a high talk. It was not a chimera and water from Melamchi is running in taps in Kathmandu now,” he added. As he said, the campaign of ‘Digital Nepal’ has been initiated to raise the country up in terms of development and arrangements have been made to directly monitor various projects from Singha Durbar. No shutdown as far as possible PM Oli also made it clear on the occasion that the government was not for imposing lockdown to contain spread of coronavirus. Stating only rumours that the government was issuing threat of imposing shutdown have come out (in the media), he said the government was not for implementing the shutdown as far as possible.
According to him, several countries were compelled to impose shutdown as Covid-19 pandemic spread at a rapid rate and to large populations and the Government of Nepal is serious regarding the safety of the people.
In 2019 the world had to grapple with Covid-19 which it had never seen before and the country was affected throughout the year including in several sectors as the entire social life, economy, education etc.
“Covid-19 had been somewhat brought under control since November and it has started to spread again from April. The government is carrying out works so that the pain that was suffered in 2077 BS does not recur same form, spread and cause loss of life and property,” the PM said and urged one and all to obey the health protocols determined by the government, the Ministry of Health and Population to remain safe from Covid-19.
Though the year 2077 BS was hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, it did not mean that we achieved nothing, the Prime Minister argued, claiming that the year remained a year of some signification achievements such as Melamchi water arrived in Kathmandu, post-quake reconstruction works were carried out, online education was launched and efforts were made to normalize the public life. Though an agreement on the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) had reached when the Nepali Congress and CPN (Maoist Center) were in the government, it was drawn into controversy when the government tabled it at the parliament for further procedures, violating the constitutional rights of the government, he said. The Prime Minister further stressed the need of forging national unity and using our strengthen for the development of nation. Stating that the government had planned to launch new schemes in the new year, he said ‘Mero Kitta Karyakram’ would be launched from today. Under the programme, farmers could have access to a digital copy of the land registration certificate from home. ”We are entering the New Year with new enthusiasm, new confidence and new hope,” the Prime Minister said. The Prime minister promised to connect Simikot of Humla with road network and expedite the implementation of construction projects targeting universities, hospitals and schools. Stating that now the country ensured a peaceful amtoshphere for investment, he said works were on the progress to formulate required laws. PM urges not to be persuaded by rumours Prime Minister Oli has urged one and all to get engaged in nation-building campaign with confidence and not to be influenced by rumours. Speaking of the need of international responsibility, peace and development with social justice, he sought the contribution from all quarters to build a peaceful atmosphere. He further highlighted the need of creating a safer world for all, vowing to ensure atmohsphere conducive for finding job opportunities for youths within the country. As he said, 1.8 million people at home had been vaccinated against the Covid-19 and the preparations were underway to provide vaccine to the remaining population. Seeking contribution from all quarters to stay safe from the disease, the Prime Minister wished that may the year bring success and progress among the people.