KATHMANDU, JULY 4: In the first eight months of the current fiscal year, 115,057 vehicles have been added in Bagmati Province. According to the Bagmati Ministry of Transport, Labor and Employment, 96,527 two-wheelers and 18,530 four-wheelers were added during the period. According to the ministry, the total number of vehicles registered in Bagmati has reached 1.8 million by February this year.
The number of vehicles in Bagmati, including the federal capital Kathmandu Valley, is increasing by an average of 150,000 annually. According to the ministry, 1,429,169 vehicles were registered in the period up to June 2018. Similarly, in the year 2019, due to Covid 19, 1,06,227 vehicles were added to Bagmati and the total number of vehicles reached 15,35,396. "In a country where public transport has not improved, a large number of two-wheelers is being imported, 'he said
Similarly, in the year 2020, 146,414 new vehicles were registered in Bagmati to take the total number to 1681,810. In the first eight months of the current fiscal year, 115,057 vehicles have been added in Bagmati. At present, the total length of roads in the Kathmandu Valley has reached 2,086 kilometers. During this period, the number of vehicles in the Valley has doubled. Traffic Engineer Ashish Gajurel says that the import of two-wheelers has increased in Nepal due to lack of improvement in public transport. "In a country where public transport has not improved, a large number of two-wheelers are being imported,” he said, “Two-wheelers are relatively inexpensive to purchase and easy to operate, making them a viable option for customers."
A wave of two-wheelers
The number of passengers in two-wheeled vehicles has skyrocketed since the Covid-19 pandemic. The public interest in two-wheelers increased due to the overcrowding of public transport during Covid-19. According to the ministry, the registration of two-wheelers has been high. In the year 2019, out of the total 1,06,227 vehicles added, the number of two wheelers was 87,830. Similarly, in the year 2020, the number of two wheelers increased drastically in Bagmati. During the same period, 126,549 two-wheelers were added. Similarly, 96,527 two-wheelers have been registered in the period up to February of 2021.
Gajurel, a traffic engineer, says that driving a two-wheeler is riskier than driving a four-wheeler. "People are forced to drive a two-wheeler although it is riskier than a four-wheeler," he said, “Imports of two-wheelers are unlikely to decline unless the government makes public transport easier and simpler.”