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Tilottama among best municipalities in the country

Tilottama among best municipalities in the country

Tilottama Municipality of Rupandehi is among the best performing municipalities in the country. 

There are many examples of roads in the country that have become dilapidated within a year due to lack of maintenance. But Tilottama Municipality has taken good care of the six-lane road built by the Department of Roads. The road is lit all night, while bougainvillea has been planted on either side of the road to enhance its visual appeal.

The municipality has put in place a strict code of conduct for its denizens. One cannot chew tobacco products in the open. Likewise, it has declared the six-lane road a no-honk zone, while a separate lane has been dedicated for cyclists. Likewise, the municipality has introduced programs like cattle registration, distributed bins to denizens for organized waste disposal, and involved them in development works. While disabled of ‘A’ and ‘B’ categories are provided with allowance by the federal government, the municipality has been providing allowance to ‘C’ category disabled as well. It has allocated an additional budget to make the federal government’s school lunch program more effective. Furthermore, it provides lunches to Grade 6 students as well although the federal government’s program is limited until Grade 5 only.

People’s representatives in this municipality put aside their political rivalries when it comes to development works. They do not show any reluctance in continuing good programs initiated by the people’s representatives elected in the previous term. A perfect synchrony between people’s representatives and municipal staffers exists in the municipality which has helped it achieve positive changes. So much so, representatives of other local units are visiting Tilottama Municipality to learn about its good works.

Not only Tilottama, 26 other local units across the country have shown that change is possible if there is strong willpower in people’s representatives and municipal staffers. Their good works encourage local units all over the country. 

Narayan Aryal, chief administrative officer of Tilottama Municipality, said the perfect tuning between people’s representatives and municipal staffers is the reason behind their success. “Our focus is on finding solutions instead of heightening conflict if there are any differences between us in our plans and programs,” Aryal said. “The common efforts put by us have helped make Tilottama the best municipality in the country.”

Aryal also said their focus is on addressing issues that are directly linked to people’s everyday life. “We have started the ‘best staffer award’ to encourage our staff members. Likewise, we are mobilizing internal resources on top of the budget that we receive from federal and provincial governments to implement our plans and programs,” he added.

According to Aryal, the municipality categorizes projects into golden, pride, and priority projects and implements them accordingly. “We have included four school projects in the golden list in the current fiscal year,” he added.

Tilottama is an ISO certified local body in the country. Likewise, it is also a member of Mayors for Peace and CityNet—the association of municipalities in the Asia Pacific.

Suryodaya Municipality of Ilam is among the 26 local units that received the honor. Deputy Mayor Durga Kumar Baral said one of the reasons behind their success is that they stick by the legislation while executing plans and programs. “We stick by the policies and regulations because we will be accountable for our decisions even after completion of our term,” Baral said. “Suryodaya is the tea capital of Nepal and a tourist town. Our focus is on exploiting these identities to uplift the living condition of the people,” he added.

Farmers in Suryodaya produce around 50,000-60,000 liters of milk every day. “We are aiming to raise daily production to 200,000 liters. We have procured 300 cows from Canada and 96 percent of their calves are female,” Baral said. “These improved breeds of cows will help to meet our target.”

According to Baral, the municipality has also been exporting fresh vegetables and broom grass to India. Likewise, 65 industries in the municipality produce 5m kilograms of green leaves annually. “We mobilize revenue of Rs 90m from our internal resources and we are looking for ways to increase revenue,” he added.

Shashi Kumar Khaniya, mayor of Khairahani Municipality of Chitwan, said Khairahani received the honor in recognition of its works on agriculture, social and economic development.  

Bhim Prasad Dhungana, president of the Municipalities Association of Nepal, awarded these 26 municipalities based on their work performance.

There are 293 municipalities in the country.

The federal government has been prioritizing the best-performing municipalities in its policies and programs, according to Ashwin Kumar Pokharel, the joint spokesperson for the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration.