Kelzang Wangchuk | Samdrupjongkhar

About 121 tenants renting space for business and residence in the SD PLAZA in Thimphu need not have to  pay their rent for the months of March and April.

Proprietor, Sonam Dukpa, popularly known as Goop Sonam Dukpa, a Samdrup Jongkhar based business man, waived off the rents through a letter on March 31 stating that the rent has been waived off because of the impact on business from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Sonam Dukpa also  contributed Nu 1million (M) to His Majesty’s kidu fund for Covid-19 and Nu 0.5M to the Covid-19 Respond Fund managed by the finance ministry.

Sonam Dukpa said that everyone should be inspired by His Majesty The King’s selfless service for peace, safety and security of the people and country and come together as one community to help each other in a meaningful way during such crucial times.

He said he decided to waive off the rents for tenants living in his buildings in Thimphu because he doesn’t want tenants to worry about paying rents when they are going through difficult times.

“It is my responsibility to look into the problems of my tenants, as I don’t want them to have the additional pressure of paying rent during these precarious times,” he said. “It is also important to put community ahead of our own needs during such periods.”

Rent for two months could amount to about Nu 2.6M.

“Since we are united by our humanity and it is now apparent that we are not individuals but a community whose health and well-beings are inter-connected, I made a small contribution to our community’s well-being in my own capacity,” the letter to the tenants stated.

Sonam Dukpa said he would review and look into matters and inform tenants if any further measures are needed should the situation worsens.

Meanwhile, the owner of Tara Corner building in Paro and Tara Plaza in Thimphu, Norbu Tshering, availed a 50 percent discount to the entertainment businesses in his property and 30 percent to the shopkeepers.

In a letter to his tenants, shared by a tenant, Norbu Tshering said he would look into their condition if the situation doesn’t improve because of the Covid-19 pandemic.