The project with UTL, which has paid Rs 400 million, has fallen into disrepair

The project with UTL, which has paid Rs 400 million, has fallen into disrepair

More than four years after the Nepal Telecom Authority signed an agreement with United Telecom Limited (UTL) to lay optical fiber in 21 districts of Lumbini and Gandaki states within two years, the project is still in limbo.

The writ petition has been filed in the Supreme Court for a long time but no decision has been taken.

NEA had signed an agreement with UTL on March 6, 2008 to lay optical fiber in Gandaki and Lumbini provinces within two years. After the agreement, UTL had taken Rs 402 million as advance payment. He could not do any work even after two years.

NEA canceled the agreement with UTL without extending the deadline as there was no optical laying work in Lumbini and Gandaki under package 2.

The UTL filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court seeking stay of the decision, saying the authority had canceled the unilateral agreement. In this regard, the Supreme Court has issued an interim order not to implement the decision not to extend the period until the petition is settled.

After all these incidents, the construction of information highways by laying optical fiber in 21 districts of Gandaki and Lumbini states has come to a standstill.

The Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTAA) has said that no other action can be taken as the matter is pending in the Supreme Court. NEA chairperson Purushottam Khanal said that he was waiting for the decision.

“We are waiting for the decision from the Supreme Court,” Khanal said.

UTL has already taken Rs. 402 million as advance payment. The money is now ‘frozen’ as the project has not progressed and a writ petition has been filed in the Supreme Court.

Khanal said that the NEA has ‘seized’ the amount as per the law. The amount will be seized until a decision is made and then proceed according to the decision.

If UTL wins the case, it will proceed as per the rules. Khanal said that the NEA will recover the amount along with interest after losing the case.

“They have to pay interest on the money they lost,” Khanal said.

Khanal said that the NEA will recover the amount along with interest after losing the case.

“They have to pay interest on the money they lost,” Khanal said.

The NEA has mobilized the Rural Telecommunication Development Fund to construct the Mid-Hill Highway and the Information Highway connecting the district headquarters through three packages.

Accordingly, an agreement has been reached with Nepal Telecom to lay optical fiber in Provinces 1, 2 and Bagmati in Package 1. According to NEA, Nepal Telecom has so far laid 979 kilometers out of 2,179 kilometers of optical fiber.

Similarly, progress has not been made in package three as in package two. In package three, an agreement was reached with Nepal Telecom to complete the project in Karnali and Far-Western states within two years.

NEA has stated that it is in the process of DIP after completing the detailed timeline and detailed survey with the agreement of ADSS for the work in this area. Bids have been invited for some other works.

NEA has signed an agreement worth Rs. 9.89 billion to complete the information highway project. Accordingly, Rs. 615.51 million has been paid for advance payment for package one and Rs. 128.02 million has been paid for customs duty.

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Rabins Sharma Lamichhane

Rabins Sharma Lamichhane is the owner of RabinsXP who is constantly working for increasing the Internet of Things (IoT) in Nepal. He also builds android apps and crafts beautiful websites. He is also working with various social services. The main aim of Lamichhane is to digitally empower the citizens of Nepal and make the world spiritually sound better both in terms of technology and personal development. Rabins is also the first initiator of Digital Nepal.

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