Political squabbling, lacklustre organisation and a lack of finance are just some of the reasons that have been given for the delay

Almost five years after a 7.8 earthquake laid waste to swathes of Kathmandu, the Nepalese capital is still struggling to get back on its feet.

Restoration work has been handicapped by lacklustre organisation and a lack of finance, and while some landmarks have been renovated, other examples of prized architecture are still so much rubble.

It wasn’t just Kathmandu that took the hit, either. The quake on April 25, 2015 killed more than 9,000 people across the country, injured thousands and destroyed around half a million homes. Seventeen days later, a second tremor demolished many structures that had been weakened by the first.

Having launched a massive tourism promotion campaign – Visit Nepal 2020 – the government has been keen to talk up the renovation effort’s headway, particularly since it has been mocked for such gaffes as buying two robot concierges for the international airport which conspicuously lacks clean toilets.


... numerous voices have been raised in criticism, bemoaning both the government dragging its feet – political shenanigans delayed the establishment of the National Reconstruction Agency until a full eight months after the quake – and also missing an opportunity to imaginatively redesign what was in essence a medieval city.

Reconstruction has been slowed by “political squabbling and a lack of local or regional governance’, according to Urmi Sengupta, a lecturer in spatial planning at Queen’s University Belfast, UK.