Kathmandu, March 19. The International Relations Committee under the House of Representatives has today formed a sub-committee tasked to study the problems and issues facing the archeological monuments listed in the World Heritage Sites. The five-member Committee coordinated by parliamentarian Sujita Shakya has Naradmuni Rana, Bodh Maya Kumari Yadav and Sudan Kirati as members.
One member is yet to be picked for the Committee which is mandated to research the archeological heritages and submit report within three months.
Committee’s President Pabitra Niraula (Kharel) in today’s meeting of the Committee shared that the sub-committee was formed to minutely conduct further studies and researches on the issues surfaced during the construction of the quake-damages monuments and sites of historical and archeological significance. “Our cultures are our identity and asset. We need to transform the historical and sites and monuments built by our forefathers to the next generation as it is.”
Maharjan Complex should be demolished
In the meeting, Hanumandhoka Durbar Herchar Adda Chief Aruna Nakarmi, Sampada Bachau Abhiyan’s activist Ganapati Shrestha and Kantipur Dainik’s journalist Damodar Neupane among others drew the attention of the Committee towards the wanton construction of the private buildings and the encroachment of land belonging to the historical sites.
Towards this, they suggested the Maharjan Complex being constructed towards the east of the Hanumandhoka Durbar Square site at New Road in Kathmandu to reconstruct it in a design that is unique and embodies the cultural significance.
They had also presented the fact that the Complex design (35 feet height) does not comply with the design code enforced for the private houses being built in and around the World Heritage Sites.
Former Prime Minister and Committee member Madhav Kumar Nepal opined that the Maharjan Complex, which violates the regulations, should be demolished by bulldozing and rebuilt in a traditional design in compliance with the rules and regulations.
The members of the newly formed sub-committee echoed with Nepal and argued that any private buildings, including the Maharjan Complex, constructed in violations of the standard codes and regulations should be demolished.
They were of the view that the concerned authority should think seriously while taking international donors’ support for the reconstruction of the quake-damaged buildings.
Complex being constructed within legal parameters
Meanwhile, talking to the RSS, President of the Maharjan Complex Krishna Lal Maharjan clarified that the Complex was being built in consistent with all the legal provisions and building codes put in place for the private buildings to be built around the historical site. “The height of the Complex is 31 feet and the design for four storey of the Complex was approved”, he said.
According to him, the latest order of the Supreme Court had provided a way-out for the structure of private building in such areas up to 53 feet high.
The Hanumandhoka Herchar Adda claimed that the water in the pond in their premises had dried up and distance between the basement of the Complex and the Rastriya Dhukuti in the Hanumanddhoka Durbar Square was only nine metres, which poses a security threat to the historical site.
Kathmandu Metropolitan City’s Chief Administrative Office, Yadav Prasad Koirala shared that they had approved the design of the Complex abiding by the rules and regulations. “Preservation and reconstruction of the historical sites are our top priorities,” he added.