Kathmandu : The Basantapur-Hanumandhoka Durbar area, a World Heritage Site, is turning into a haphazard parking lot these days although vehicles are banned in this area.
The Hanumandhoka Durbar Square was enlisted in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 1979.
Government has prohibited the entry of vehicles in the area but vehicles can be seen entering the prohibited zone.
However, the vehicles transporting provisions, water and other essential goods are allowed to enter the Basantapur Durbar premises from 8 pm till 8 am. But one can see many vehicles plying in the area even at other times.
The Basantapur Durbar area which was badly damaged by the April 25, 2015 Gorkha earthquake is presently undergoing reconstruction. Heaps of rubble lie here and there. Operation and parking of vehicles in the area is posing a risk for the protection of the valuable monuments.
It can be seen that the vehicles of the security bodies, employees and locals are parked in the prohibited zone in the ruse of reconstruction.
Add to this, the cabs and rickshaws that are parked haphazardly and the street vendors running after the tourists to sale their wares. All this is turning the historic Basantapur Durbar area into a chaos.
Bijaya Ratna Khadgi, who lives in Basantapur, said that although vehicles could be taken in the Basantapur premises by obtaining special permits before, the vehicles belonging to the security bodies and employees are wantonly entering the area these days.
“It is the government’s job to remove the unsystematic parking problem within Asan, Indrachok and Kasthamandap areas,” he asserted.
There are five entry points to Basantapur area. One entry point is close to the Statute of Juddha Shumsher at Dharmapath, the second one is located at Jhonchhen, the third entry poinyt is at Kashthamandap, the fourth one is at Pyafal and the fifth entry point is at Makhan. The entire area within these entry points is vehicle-prohibited zone.
Administrator Officer of Hanumandhoka Durbar Square Area Conservation Programme, Chin Bajracharya, said that the KMC has used city police and security guards to stop the entry of vehicles in the premises.
He complained that people used to bring the vehicles in the premises citing parking problem in outside as well as people do not obey the city police in absence of traffic police.
Entry of vehicles was completely prohibited in the premises during day time in 2066 BS but it has been now violated forcibly. The government also restricted the entry of vehicles at Patana nd Bhaktapur Durbar Square areas along with Hanumandhoka Durbar Square.
The Conservation Programme joining hands with different guthis has been carrying out repair and maintenance as well as renovation of quake damaged structures.