It has been a year since a devastating earthquake shook Nepal. Over 8,000 lives were lost and more than 21,000 people were injured. The loss to property was manifold. However, despite the havoc, only one temple has been restored so far.
UNESCO'S Nepal Chief, Christian Manhart, revealed this in an interview with TheIndian Express.
The country is still trying to cope with the tragedy which damaged about 2,600 structures. The government is reportedly struggling to reconstruct and restore the damaged buildings.
"Only one small temple has been fully restored in Changunarayan (temple premises in Bhaktapur) in one year," Manhart told the newspaper. "As for others, a lot of preparatory work has taken place."
According to Manhart, the restoration work was delayed for a tleast half a year due to the blockade of supplies from India which was a result of the promulgation of Nepal's new Constitution. This in turm delayed the setting up of National Reconstruction Authority (NRA), affecting the restoration and reconstruction process.
As per the Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) of the Nepal government, nearly 2,900 structures with of cultural, historical and religious relevance were damaged in the natural disaster.
The total estimated damage to tangible heritage is Nepali $169 million and it would require $205 million over six years to restore them.
"Heritage sites were the worst affected in 14 districts. In this financial year (hich began in July 2015), $19.68 million had been approved for restoration but since the constitution of Nation Reconstruction Authority (NRA) was delayed, we will only be restoration 49 structures this year," Bhesh Narayan Dahal, Director General, Department of Archaeology told IE.
There are also concerns around the lengthy paper work for the restoration processes and also the quality of restoration work.