Budget: Tang Gup Ugyen Nima, in the recent dzongkhag tshogdu, requested the Ura gup to share the budget that the dzongkhag allocated for a beekeeping association in Shingnyer, Ura.

This is because Tang was the only gewog in the dzongkhag that did not receive any budget from the new Nu 7 million (M) dzongkhag development grant (DDG).

The Shingnyer Beekeeping Association was allocated Nu 1M. With the grant, 25 households are expected to start bee keeping businesses. There are 45 households in Shingnyer.

Gup Ugyen Nima justified that there are about five households in his gewog which received training in beekeeping but could not take up the business because of financial constraints.

He was the only dzongkhg tshogdu (DT) member who raised concerns while the dzongkhag planning officer made a presentation on the grant allocation.

Bumthang dzongkhag officials distributed the grant based on the needs in the gewogs.

Bumthang Dzongdag Phub Tshering said it is not necessary for the gewogs to share the grant. He said gewog officials could put up proposals if there is need for the grant.

The dzongdag justified that Shingnyer is considered less developed compared to other villages in the dzongkhag and the grant was allocated for that reason.

DT chairperson, Jambay, said the DT would support Tang’s proposal for the DDG if they put it up to the dzongkhag.

Dzongkhags will receive the grant every year.

Bumthang dzongkhag officials decided on how to allocate the DDG this year. Officials said they could not follow proper procedures in allocating the DDG this year because of time constraints.

The DDG should actually be allocated based on proposals from the people, which is then endorsed in the gewog tshogdu and then finally in the DT.

Dzongdag Phub Tshering said they could not follow the procedure this time because works needed to start soon. “But the procedure will be followed hereafter.”

Dzongkhag planning officer, Chedup Dorji, said a little over Nu 4M was allocated for connecting drinking water supply and improving the road at the Jakar crematorium. The dzongdag said many people complained about bad roads towards the cremation ground and therefore the dzongkhag prioritised its repair.

Nu 400,000 was allocated for purchasing a cooler for an organic outlet in Chamkhar. “People faced problems in storing their products,” the planning officer said. Another Nu 300,000 was allocated for constructing a temporary road over Dhurchu at Toktozampa after the bridge was damaged recently.

As of now, only light vehicles can ply over the existing bridge between Dhurchu and Toktozampa. One abutment of the bridge collapsed after the river washed away its base last summer. Construction of the new bridge here is still ongoing.

Choekhor gewog also received Nu 500,000 for the construction of a gabion wall at Shukdra.

In Chumey, Nu 500,000 has been allocated for electric fencing in Chumey.

The dzongdag also explained that a committee to allocate the grant should  be formed. Officials of relevant sectors and local government officials will make up the committee.

Nima Wangdi | Jakar