The problem may look small for the mayor of Kathmandu metropolis. But this could just be a good beginning for the bigger changes that Mayor Shah seeks to bring in the metropolis.
It has been more than three months since the areas surrounding the JDA Complex and China Town building are stinking as the sewer water has been blocked due to some physical structures built by the central prison office. The problem that has been recurring every monsoon for the past three years has directly impacted a large number of shoppers in the China Town building and a number of offices in the JDA complex. This has also affected the thousands of service seekers who visit the JDA Complex, which also houses the office of Kathmandu Metropolitan City, to avail services from the metropolis. Added to this are hundreds of inmates in the central prison located right next to these buildings. With the onset of monsoon season this year, the water logging problem has become so chronic that there are fears already that this could spread cholera and other diseases. A large number of shopkeepers have been either forced to leave the buildings or plan their relocation at a huge cost. Many have already taken ill due to the foul smell and polluted water. Clearly, this should not not be the case.
The existing sewer that was functioning well until three years ago collapsed and was blocked after the prison security police built structures such as a canteen, a shower tap, and a tank on the sewer. There is a 16-feet Rajkulo built during the Rana regime for drainage from New Road, Sundhara to Bagdurbar area that passes from below the China Town and the JDA Complex and passes behind the Central Jail at Bhotebahal upto Teku. As a result of the collapse of the sewer, the water flowing into the drain has been accumulating in the parking area under the JDA complex and China Town even if there is a slight rainfall. It is a pity that the Central Prison Security Office, which is to be blamed for the problem, has taken no initiative to resolve the problem.
The newly-elected KMC Mayor Balendra Shah has instilled hope among all residents of Kathmandu metropolis. His visions and goals have inspired many. Those who have offices and shops at the JDA complex and China Town building are no exception to this. As former KMC Mayor Bidya Sundar Shkaya did not show any interest in resolving this problem even if it was right below his office, the offices and businesses in both JDA Complex and China Town building have hoped that Mayor Shah would take the required initiatives to resolve the problem. The problem may look small for the mayor of Kathmandu metropolis. But this could just be a good beginning for the bigger changes that Mayor Shah seeks to bring in the metropolis. His positive intervention could help address the problem and send a positive message to others in the neighborhood and beyond. Mayor Shah has reportedly given his word to resolve the problem. Let his actions speak louder than his words.