Of the many activities carried out within Gelephu thromde, officials are concentrating on the construction of internal road and drainages.

Having completed the four local area plans (LAP), the thromde began working on the LAP five. The LAP was endorsed by Thromde tshogde on May 23.

The LAP five covers 222-acre area in Trashiling demkhong including prime location such as Nimalung dratshang, Gelephu High School, vacant space from the airport towards town, thromde office and the industrial service centre area.

According to thromde officials, at least 27 percent of the land was pooled in the LAP, of which 23 percent was done for road and footpath.

Officials also said the LAP has 322 thram holders of which 11 owners had undersized plots of less than 13 decimal before land pooling. “With directives from National Land Commission, Gelephu thromde combined two or more plots of one owner to make a standard size plot,” an official explained.

Officials said about six landowners paid for additional land to make a sizeable plot.

Gelephu thromde along with surveyors from the National Land Commission is currently demarcating plots and is expected to hand them over to plot owners soon.

One of the important activities within the LAP five is the industrial service centre (ISC), which will host all the automobile workshops; scrap yards and other industries that are currently scattered along the road and in the town.

Officials said there has been a huge demand for the plots at the centre. The thromde office received over 200 applications for 103 plots demarcated on the 46.94-acre land at the centre.

Officials also said ISC is important for the thromde because it generates revenue through collection of the lease. The commercial lease rate in the past years was Nu 42 a sqft (square feet), which was found expensive, and was brought down to Nu 4 a sqft.

In an earlier interview, Thrompon Tika Ram Kafley said that the previous lease rate discouraged a lot of people from applying for a plot in the area. “Only a few people showed their interest,” he said.

He said that with the current lease rate, a total of Nu 8.2 million will be earned annually, which was lost for last three years.

Nirmala Pokhrel | Tsirang