SURKHET, June 26: The local bodies of Karnali have introduced their budgets for the upcoming fiscal year 2022/23, emphasizing road infrastructure. The people’s representatives of the province have said that road infrastructure has been given priority this time as that was necessary for the development and prosperity of Karnali, a province that has a large geography but a low population.
Birendranagar, the capital of Karnali, has brought the budget considering the management of the capital city as the main focus. Birendranagar has stated that the budget prioritizes the construction of overhead bridges at the main chowks Mangalgadhi and Erichowk and the construction of paved roads that stretch until the ward offices. Deputy Mayor Nilkantha Khanal said, “The policies, programs and the budget for the upcoming fiscal year include the plans of making the capital city well-equipped, well-organized, green and beautiful.”
Birendranagar, which has announced a budget of Rs 1.94 billion, has allocated a budget of Rs 535.53 million to finance capital expenditure, Rs 1.37 billion for recurrent expenditure and Rs 32 million for financial management.
Lekbeshi municipality has also introduced a budget that focuses on building roads. Lekbeshi has given preference to building 10 roads in the municipality as 'Pride Projects' in its budget. The municipality has planned to upgrade the Kalpana Chowk-Neta road, Dasharathpur-Neta road, Kolkhola-Lamidanda road, Dah road through Jahre-Mildanda, Lavana-Pakhapani-Dah road, Gangte-Simdamar-Rupse road, Jhupra-Sataphant-Timurkot road, Gangte-Vankuna road, Badipati-Chaurase-Dhadkhet road, and Machheltar-Lamidmar-Timurkot road as the ‘Pride of the Municipality’.
“The budget includes plans for upgrading the existing roads and opening some new ones,” said Mayor Umesh Poudel. Lekbeshi Municipality has introduced a budget of Rs 748.79 million of which Rs 299.78 million has been allocated for capital expenditure while Rs 402.54 million has been allocated for current expenditure.
Very much like Lekbeshi Municipality, Barahatal Rural Municipality of Surkhet has also brought an infrastructure-focused budget. Vice-chairperson Laxmi Pun said that the budget for the upcoming fiscal year has been proposed to extend road access to all the wards and villages of Barahatal as the municipality seems to be lagging in terms of development even though it is connected to the province’s capital, Birendranagar.
She said that the rural municipality has brought a budget of Rs 627.18 million emphasizing road infrastructure. Barahatal has allocated Rs 396.45 million for current expenditure and Rs 236.50 million for capital expenditure. After road infrastructure, the municipality has given priority to the agriculture, health and education sectors.
Dailekh’s Chamunda Bindrasaini Municipality has also brought an infrastructure-focused budget. Mayor Ganesh Kumar Shahi said that the municipality has proposed the budget keeping in mind the slogan ‘Infrastructure, Agriculture, Health Education and Employment for Sustainable Development: Foundations for Building Prosperous Chamunda Bindrasaini’.
He said that apart from allocating money to large infrastructure projects of strategic importance, the budget has also allocated the necessary amount of money to small infrastructure projects that are associated with the daily needs of the people. “Apart from the conditional budget, an additional Rs 29.8 million has been allocated for the development of infrastructure,” he said. “In coordination with the federal and provincial governments, we will be building road infrastructure and other infrastructures in all the settlements of the municipality,” he added. The municipality has unveiled a budget of Rs 486.91 million for the upcoming fiscal year.