| 07-08-2018

Development Projects are Violating Human Right to Food

Indeed, road connectivity is a fundamental indicator of development. Local governments of rural parts of the country have had extreme focus on road expansion in the local area as committed with people during the election. However, unsystematic and haphazard road construction severely affecting environment as well as human right to food in the local area which is verified by a small study of FIAN Nepal over Bajhang district in the year 2017. A team of FIAN Nepal and District Right to Food Network has visited four Rural Municipalities i.e. Surma Rural Municipality-1&5, Khaptad Chhanna Rural Municipality-6&7, Thalara Rural Municipality-5&9 and Chhabis Pathivera Rural Municipality-1 were taken as sample study areas of Bajhang district where the team has visited and interacted with local people.

From the study, it has been noted that the agriculture lands are mostly destructed by the operation of excavators and bulldozers. Although, there have been Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and Initial Environmental Examination (IEE) mandatory for any development projects, however, these policies and provisions are not followed and neglected. Haphazard scratching over the hills has wrecking soil which has created a high risk of landslides. Dumping the debris scratched from the hills directly to downstream has covered agriculture land destroying agriculture crops, land fertility as well as damaged human settlement leading the people to be displaced from their own houses. Irrigation canals, drinking water systems are also damaged which clearly states that there is severe violation of human rights occurring.

After the study, FIAN Nepal shared this issue with district level stakeholders of Bajhang district, which made the issue for debate among policy makers. Civil Society Mechanisms and Journalists have taken this issue seriously, followed the study for a detail investigation and highlighted the issues widely in national media. Center for Investigative Journalism, Kantipur, Nepali Times and Nayapage online media have repeatedly raised the issue and able to draw the attention of the governments from local to central.

United Mission to Nepal has also shown keen interest for a research study on the violation of human right to food due to road construction jointly with FIAN Nepal

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