Published On: August 28, 2022 04:00 PM NPT By: Bhuwan Sharma
KATHMANDU, August 28: About 400 engineers under the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) have been protesting for a week demanding that a decision made by the Council of Ministers not be implemented.
The Council of Ministers decided to form the Settlement and Market Infrastructure Facilitation Department on August 4 and bring the said department under the Ministry of Urban Development and place the technical staff working in the defunct Department of Local Infrastructure (DoLI) under the same department.
To prevent the implementation of the said decision, the engineers working at the Ministry of Urban Development have been staging a sit-in on the premises of the Department of Urban Development and Building Construction at Babarmahal from 10:30 AM to 11:30 AM every day since last Sunday.
Thirteen engineers of the rank of joint secretary and 57 engineers of the rank of undersecretary are also directly participating in this movement. Likewise, seven intensive project implementation units and 13 intensive urban and building construction projects under the building department have also joined the protest.
They submitted a memorandum to the government through the chief district officers of the respective districts. To intensify the movement, the engineers are holding an interactive program with the senior retired employees and experts of the MoUD today.
The agitating engineers say that if the decision of the Council of Ministers is implemented, two departments of the same nature will be created and the professional development of the employees working in the building department will also be hindered. Currently, there is only the Department of Urban Development and Building Construction under the Ministry of Urban Development.
“If the Settlement and Market Infrastructure Facilitation Department is added to it, there will be two departments of the same nature under the ministry. There is no need for two departments of the same nature and the same work. That's why we have demanded that the decision of the Council of Ministers should be corrected," said Technical Joint Secretary Ekraj Adhikari, who participated in the protest.
Similarly, another engineer Devendradev Khanal said that the point number 305 of the budget speech passed by parliament should be implemented and the decision of the Council of Ministers should be scrapped.
In the budget speech on May 29, the government announced that the DoLI would be dismissed and at most 10 percent of the employees working there would be sent to the Local Infrastructure Development Facilitation Unit under the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration, while the remaining employees would be accommodated in the provincial governments and the federal Ministry of Physical Infrastructure.
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