The Kathmandu Metropolitan City and local residents of Sisdole and Banchare Danda have reached an 18-point agreement on resumption of garbage transportation to Banchare Dada.
Based on a new agreement on Thursday night, the KMC will be allowed to transport waste collected from Kathmandu only during the night time from Friday, for which the City will have to prepare road infrastructure and light facilities on the road within three months.
Earlier on Monday also there was a tripartite agreement between the Urban Ministry, the KMC and local authorities. However, locals in Sisdole and Banchare Danda obstructed vehicles carrying garbage to Banchare Danda, saying that their genuine demands were not met.
In the past few days, the government authority had forcefully taken the garbage carrying lorries with the help of police and that had seen scuffles between locals and security forces.
With the new agreement, the KMC must make arrangements to make both Sisdole and Banchare Danda a smell-free zone in one month. For that the City should find out a scientific solution to prevent leachate from mixing with the river in two months. Also, the City should not let leachate leak from lorries, and not let garbage litter on the way. Similarly with the new agreement, locals have asked the authority to conduct a scientific research of the most affected zones in Sisdole and Banchare Danda and implement the suggestions that come from the research.
Meanwhile, other points mentioned in the agreement are about developing greenery in the area and assisting in improving the quality of education in the local schools. The City should also bring a programme to assist locals for the promotion of agriculture.
Mayor Balendra Shah, deputy Mayor Sunita Dangol, City’s administrative chief Lok Nath Paudyal and four local representatives, two each from Kakani Rural Development and Dhunibeshi Municipality, have signed the agreement.
Thursday’s agreement also states strict implementation of the agreement the Ministry of Urban Development had reached on Monday regarding the garbage disposal in the area.
As per the last agreement, the ministry has allocated Rs425 million to construct five different roads that lead to Banchare Danda, while Rs17 million has been allocated for river embankment, community building and tree plantation in the area within the upcoming fiscal year 2022-23.
The ministry also announced plans to start the land acquisition drive in the affected area.
Meanwhile, the City has announced a plan to start the process for health insurance services to the residents of the affected area within a week. The beneficiaries of the insurance service will be residents of Dhunibeshi Municipality’s wards 1, 3, 4 and Kakani Rural Municipality’s wards 1, 2 and 3. Further, the City has announced plans to continue grants for other infrastructure development in those wards.
“Yesterday’s agreement has given us some hope. Let’s see how the agreement is implemented,” said Chandra Bahadur Balami, a local, who is also former chairperson of Kakani Rural Municipality, Ward-1.
“Locals in the area retaliated because they have been deceived by the authorities for the past 17 years,” said Balami.
In 2005, the Kathmandu Metropolitan City started dumping garbage collected from the Valley at Sisdole, spread over 740 ropanis (37.65 hectares) of land, with an agreement that the site would be used for three years.
“But this time KMC Mayor Balen Shah seems to have understood people’s problem as he has kept solving our problem since he assumed office as an elected representative, this has given us some hope” said Balami.