Trongsa dzong renovation yet to start

Heritage: With the department of culture yet to approve the drawings, designs and estimate, a major renovation work worth Nu 30.47M of the country’s largest historical monument Trongsa dzong is likely to be delayed.

According to the dzongkhag, the renovation work was supposed to begin by December 2014.  Trongsa dzongda, Tshewang Rinzin said they were yet to know how long the department would take before the work begins. “Only after the approval, we can get down to details of procuring stones and timber,” he said, adding that, without an approval, they couldn’t even process permits for timber.

Mangdechu hydropower project has funded the renovation of northern part of Trongsa dzong, which allegedly suffered damage from the blasting at the project dam located around 1.6km away.

The dzongkhag tshogdu in July 2014 decided to pull down the existing damaged structure by December last year.   The damaged three-storied structure faces the Thimphu highway, and the shorter structure, adjoined to Dema lhakhang on the right, is planned for reconstruction this year.

The dzongkhag administration is also proposing labour coefficient or contract labour to the culture department, after facing difficulty to get traditional dhozo, zhing zho and shing zho at government’s existing daily wage of Nu 165 a day.

“People say they can’t work for Nu 165 daily wage, when even working in farms fetches them Nu 500 a day,” Tshewang Rinzin said.  The renovation work would need at least 30-40 labourers.

The dzongkhag is working out the labour coefficient and, if approved, will contract the work to the labourers.  For instance, the wall construction will be contracted to interested labourers, after estimating the cost for construction of wall per cubic metre.

“Only the labour component will be contracted while monitoring and supervision will be done by the dzongkhag with specification of standard,” Tshewang Rinzin said.

According to the dzongkhag engineer Passang Dorji, labour contract would expedite the renovation works and not escalate the cost.

By Tempa Wangdi, Trongsa

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