Service seekers queuing up outside the Land Revenue Office, Tikapur. Yogesh Rawal/Republica
TIKAPUR, May 9: Bal Bahadur Rawat of Janaki Rural Municipality-1, Durgauli was obliged to make rounds of the Land Revenue Office (LRO), Tikapur, for five days to freeze the transaction of his land. Similarly, it has been two days since Sher Bahadur Budha of Bardagoriya Rural Municipality-1 has been visiting the LRO for the transfer of his land to his brother.
As it is still uncertain how long he will have to visit the office to complete his work, he decided to return home by keeping his brother at their relative's house in Tikapur. He says it will be a shame if his brother will have to stay at their relative's home any longer.
The sluggish delivery of service at the LRO, Tikapur, has been testing the patience of all who visit the office to have their work done. People are forced to frequent the office at least for a week even for minor purposes. "Snail-paced work has been a torture for all the visitors," said Budha.
With the objective of delivering quick and effective service, the LRO adopted online system since April 28. However, that has not been as effective as expected. In fact, the locals have started returning home with a disappointed look on their faces these days. They vent their ire to the accountant and other staffers but that doesn't help.
Laxmi Prasad Khanal, former secretary of Tikapur chapter of Nepal Lekhapadhi Kanoon Byabasai Association, laments that people vent their frustration on them for the delay in their work.
"We understand that people get pissed off after waiting for so long but we are the ones to bear their brunt," said Khanal.
The LRO has been providing services to the locals living in almost half the territory of Kailali. People from Tikapur, Bhajani and Lamkichuha municipalities, Janaki, Joshipur, Bardgoriya rural municipalities among others come here for various purpose.
Sarbananda Chapai, information officer at the LRO, admitted that service delivery has been slow after the adoption of online system.
According to him, earlier, at least 15 land transfer documents were issued in a day but now hardly five or six are done. He has blamed lack of sufficient and skilled staffers, poor internet service and lack of experience behind the sluggish work. Delay is also because the staffers have to maintain online record as well as in written form.
"The work has been doubled for the staffers," he said.
According to Chapai, they have an added burden of work but the number of staffers is quite low. Many staffers have been transferred to other districts under the government's employee adjustment program but no one has been appointed in their place.
In the absence of office chief, a non-gazetted officer has been handling the post of the chief since the last 14 months. As many as 56 out of the total 126 LROs of the country have adopted online system recently.