It is a dilemma for Toribari residents as whether to consider themselves as residents of a municipality or not. Although Toribari was included within the boundary of Phuentsholing Thromde(municipality), the residents complaint of not getting any of the services required to be provided by the municipality.
Residents of Toribari prefer to remain in the Gewog rather than paying land taxes of Nu12.50 and house tax amounting to Nu 100. ‘We are not getting approval to construct houses; neither the town development has any plan to extend the development activities. So what for are we paying the taxes at par with the thromde?’ questioned the villagers.
One resident, Chandra Bahadur wondered, “Why the factories are being constructed when we cannot construct our houses”.
According to Kuensel, the thromde member representing Toribari, Tirtha Maya Magar had submitted the proposal for construction of farm road, houses and water supply in the municipal council three times, but nothing has been discussed in thromde thshogdu (municipal council meeting) yet.
‘People are losing the patience to wait for the development to take in their village’, said Tirtha Maya.
A farmer, Kubir Ghallay, describes Toribari being no less than a remote village as it is surrounded by areca nut trees and forest with no modern facilities and services to call a town. ‘So it better be included in the gewog (village) than in thromde(town)’, he says.
The chief urban planner for Phuentsholing town, Tshering Phuntsho, has a different logic for ostracizing Toribari from the town development activities. He says that there is no Local Area Plan for development of infrastructures in Toribari. ‘Once the LAP is in place, it is sure that all facilities and services will be provided. But it might take two years to complete everything from preparing LAP to finalizing the budget and development to commence in Pekershing’, he defended.
Toribari is 14km away from Phuentsoling main town with 35 households segregated into three areas.