Speaker directs govt to clarify Rautahat drowning incident

Published On: August 7, 2017 02:54 AM NPT

KATHMANDU, August 6: House Speaker Onsari Gharti has drawn special attention of the government over the drowning of four young girls in open pits that were dug for road construction in Rautahat.
Speaker Gharti has directed the government to clarify about the incident in the next House meeting after several lawmakers on Sunday's House meeting raised the issue. Torrential rains since the past four days had filled up several open pits alongside the under-construction road section from Garuda to Pani Tanki.

The deceased - all aged between nine to 12 years - have been identified as Sunaina Kumari Sah, Sangeeta Kumari Sah, Sunita Kumari Sah and Susmita Kumari Sah. 
UML lawmakers in the parliament protested against the incident by standing from their seats at the outset of the House meeting on Sunday. Speaker Onsari had then given time for UML Chief Whip Bhanu Bhakta Dahal to put forth their demands in the parliament.
Addressing the parliament, UML Chief Whip Dhakal criticized the contractor responsible for building the road section from Garuda to Pani Tanki for the deaths of the young girls. Stating that they had repeatedly drawn the attention of the government to do the needful to avoid similar incidents, Dhakal demanded compensation to the families of the victims and punishment for the contractors for their irresponsible work. 

Dhakal said that as many as 11 children had so far lost their lives across the nation due to reckless and haphazard construction works carried out by contractors. 

The UML lawmakers had allowed regular House business after Speaker Onsari directed the government to clarify about the incident. The concerned government minister will clarify the incident in the next House meeting scheduled for Wednesday.

Also speaking at Sunday's meeting, Nepali Congress lawmaker Ram Hari Khatiwada expressed serious concerns over the failure of concerned contractors to bury the open pits dug in course of constructing roads despite the prime minister's directive to do so within 15 days. He said that the death of four young girls in Garuda was a painful incident.
Similarly, CPN (Maoist Center) lawmaker Ram Narayan Bidari demanded action against those digging pits, but not burying them on time. Another lawmaker Ram Ayodhya Yadav said that carelessness on part of the road contractors had cost the lives of innocent girls in Garuda.

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