Sunday, September 29, 2013

Once beaten, never shy to get beaten twice

It goes deep down in our roots that Bhutanese are reluctant to learn from the mistakes we make. Once beaten, we are never shy to get beaten twice.
The Tala hydropower project colony which was built then to support the Tala Hydropower Project Construction remained empty after the completion of the project, let alone the ghost town, Gedu, which was built with the promising prospect of serving the project, enduring very few wayfarers after the project was completed. Had it not been for the Business school, God knows how the infrastructure would have been left empty. The amount of money spent on building the colony might have been very less compared to the cost incurred in building the hydro power, but it still projects the unnecessary spending.
New PHPA colony under construction

The kuensel issue, 28th September, 2013, has a story on the Bajothang town and that what will happen to the town when most of its tenants will shift to the new colony which is being constructed for the project people. Let’s not talk about how these projects have inflated the market, and also about how much the hydropower project is important for nation and its economy. The article here is solely on what will happen to the house owners who have a big invisible car parked in front of their house of whose value is decreasing daily? How will they repay the loans when, supposedly, their rich tenants move to their own colony which will have everything, right from the shopping center to the sporting facilities? Will the town on its own sustain like the small Gangthangka survived through the time? Of course Gangthangkha house owners then did not have any car parked in front of their building? Right now, I can only think of the house owners shifting their shops, if they own any, to the coming up new colony and take a rent in their shopping center that too if the project allow and repay the loan.
Bajothang town.  Courtesy: Passudiary.com
The thing about Bajothang town moving towards the dangerous end should have been avoided. We already had an experience with Gedu, yet our officials missed on such a heavy concern. How can it be possible that the DPR preparation did not involve any Bhutanese experts? That’s a total bullshit, and if it’s true, the grave has been dug, it’s waiting for the end. Who do we held accountable for loses the town will be subjected to? And for the projects which would need serious and consistent infrastructure only during its construction need to build a colony on the extra expenses? And what will happen to these colonies when the project is completed? Will we have another college to rescue? And yes, talking about the college, the Education City comes to the picture. The supposedly international city, will it be able to attract the foreigners to come and study in Bhutan? And if it fails to sell its product to the projected masses, will it target the local students at much cheaper rate? And if it does, how will the private colleges get affected? Our country and population is too small for so many big things.

Perhaps none of the above situations will happen, supposing that my not-so-researched article is utterly wrong? But then, how do we know also about the governments after thoughts on the project sustainability as the information is very much private and not made public. Some Dorji and his friends know, but then they don’t care to educate the lesser minds like us.  We are already in such a delicate situation that the future seems to be burdened more with the unthinkable situations. Government encouraged people to build the town but never told about the guest who will build its own house. 
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