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One million Nepalis slip under poverty line after deadly quakes

world Updated: Jun 14, 2015 21:24 IST
Nepal earthquakes

Nearly one million people have slipped below the poverty line in Nepal after two powerful earthquakes wrought a trail of destruction across the mountainous country that left about 9,000 people dead.

"The earthquakes have pushed 982,000 more people back into poverty due to the loss of assets and income generating opportunities," according to a report by Nepal's National Planning Commission (NPC).

The draft report on Post Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA), which will be shortly finalised, has put the needs estimate of the country at USD 6.66 billion; nearly one-third of the country's Gross Domestic Product.

The draft PDNA, prepared by the NPC working with some 250 Nepali and international experts, has divided the damage assessment into 21 sectors.

It has calculated the damage extent in housing and human settlements, which has suffered the most damage, at Rs 330 billion. The damage to education and tourism is estimated at Rs 28 billion and Rs 18 billion respectively.

The NPC handed over the PDNA draft report to Prime Minister Sushil Koirala on Friday.

The vice-chairman of NPC Govind Raj Pokharel claimed that the report will be finalised by June 18, and will include inputs from broader consultations to be organised in Kathmandu on Saturday, as well as subsequent comments by donors.

The report will be tabled before an international donors conference on June 25 to collect resources for the post-quake rebuilding and reconstruction.

The government is also considering forming a high-level implementation agency for the reconstruction and a law for this purpose is in the making.

In order to convince the donor community, the government is also expected to establish an agency for implementation and reconstruction in a fast-track mode.

Altogether 36 out of the total 75 districts in Nepal are affected by the 7.9 magnitude earthquake on April 25 which was followed by another 7.3-magnitude earthquake on May 12.

However, 14 districts including three districts in the Kathmandu valley fall under most-hit regions.