BARA, April 5: The government had introduced Public Residential Program (PRP) in order to provide rehabilitation to the poor, underprivileged and marginalized communities. But the people have not been completely benefited from this program especially due to the involvement of middlemen.
The government has assured to provide Rs 332,000 to the people of the Dalit and marginalized communities for the construction of their house. However, service seekers think it would have been better had the government deposited that amount directly in their personal accounts instead of providing it to the middlemen.
People who had started the construction of their new houses by demolishing their old houses have been left in the lurch due to the sluggish work of the middlemen.
The Urban Development and Building Division Office (UDBDO), Birgunj has been running the PRP in Bara. People lament that middlemen take a lot of time to buy construction materials and hand them over to them. According to Mahagur Paswan of Banjariya, the construction of his house was delayed because middlemen took a lot of time to provide him with the construction materials.
"If the government had provided the money directly in our hands, we would have been able to use it the way we wanted," said Paswan, adding, "But now, we are obliged to wait."
Locals have no idea about the prices of the construction materials. According to Dhuniya Chamain, they are often threatened by the middlemen when they ask them about the prices of the materials.
Meanwhile, Ghanshyam Thakur, engineer at the UDBDO, claims that the money assured by the government has already been deposited in a common account of the service seekers. When asked why the money was not deposited in the personal accounts of the service seekers, Thakur said it is more convenient to send money in a common account rather than sending it individually.
In Bara alone, the government is set to construct a total of 895 houses under PRP with a total investment of Rs 300 million.