On 25th December 2020, the RAP3 MHLR team handed over to the Government of Nepal the first 26km long section of the 67km Mugu Humla Link Road (MHLR). While the rest of the road is still under construction, a full width track along the entire road length has now been opened. Whilst the road is still a construction site, some vehicles have travelled to deliver goods to the local people of Humla who are benefitting from the transport services of food, construction materials, and health services.
Ward chairperson, Bhaire Tamang says that after the transportation services reached Piplang, the SNG thick rice, which costs Rs. 4500 a bag is now available at RS. 3500 in Chankheli and Nepca. Similarly, retailer Nabaraj Singh of Palima village says that the same thick rice that used to cost Rs. 3000 per bag is now available at Rs. 2100 to Rs. 2300, while cooking oil at Rs. 165 per half liter is now available at Rs. 130 and sugar which was Rs. 200 per kg is now available at Rs. 130 to Rs. 150 in village shops.
Likewise, Basanta Chaulagain of Soniraj General store in Loti, Chankheli and local businessmen of Darma and Deuli also reported that prices of food items have come down as compared to the past with a market survey showing that the price of these items has dropped by 35 to 40 percent compared to past years and the locals have started getting goods at more affordable prices.
Local residents in Humla are hopeful that once the entire section of MHLR is completed, they will be benefitting from the provision of regular transport services in the district and further cost reductions. In the meantime, RAP3 MHLR is liaising with local leaders to work out a way of allowing regular goods delivery to Humla during construction, whilst keeping the workers and vehicle operators as safe as possible.