Nepal marks anniversary of devastating natural disaster


“Getting out to numerous more remote and often badly affected areas was nearly impossible with roads cut off from landslides, while many villages were only accessible by foot”, she said. Initially paralyzed by the magnitude and rapid succession of the quakes, to its credit, the government was able to mobilize and coordinate security forces for rescue efforts and for public safety in the weeks that followed.

After months of bickering, the government finally established a National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) in December to oversee rebuilding and distribute funds. It will officially announce the start of reconstruction campaign in the coming week.

What was the scale of the destruction?

Buddhist monks also held prayer ceremonies for victims at the site of a destroyed temple in the capital’s Durbar Square. The stones were laid exactly at 11:56 a.m. local time, matching the time the quake struck on April 25, 2015, local media reported.

The country seemed totally unprepared for the disaster.

At least 753 heritage monuments were either damaged or destroyed.

The last “great” quake that hit the country in 1934 with its epicentre at Sankhuwasabha in eastern Nepal, which also gave a big jolt to Kathmandu, killed 8,519 people, according to historical data.

Several people are still missing and have never been accounted for.

How many people are still homeless?


Exhausted of waiting, some 110,000 families have moved back into homes that are still at risk of collapse.

WHERE ARE VICTIMS LIVING NOW: The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies estimates four million people are still living in temporary shelters. Forty centres have been rebuilt so far, with work in progress on another 100 sites.

A year after an natural disaster flattened her home in Nepal, Menuka Rokaya still lives in a tent with her husband and nine-month-old baby as they await even a sliver of a $4 billion aid fund.

The process of providing subsidy of Rs.200,000 began in Dolakha district where 400 families were handed over the money to rebuild their houses.

But now the reconstruction authority is raising that amount to $8.1bn, due to unspecified “cost factors”.

According to Himal news magazine, a popular Nepali weekly which has run an investigative cover story in its recent edition, the agencies spent an estimated $1bn.

Medair’s Heidi Cockram with quake survivors in Nepal.

Estimates suggest that the quake affected over 40 percent of Nepal in 39 of its 75 districts. With tourism accounting for almost a 10th of Nepal’s economy, the country has also suffered sorely in terms of lost revenue. According to Department of Tourism 30% decrease was felt in tourism industry in 2015.

“Families who are landless and who were living on unregistered land are very much uncertain about the future and support that the government had promised”, said Prabin Man Singh, research and policy coordinator for Oxfam, who co-authored the report.


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