“Even when I want to earn I don’t find a job. If wild elephants arrive to my poorly built house, I fear my son’s and daughter’s safety therefore, I’m unable to work outside. When we have money we eat otherwise we remain hungry.”
Mohammad Barahim aged 45, resident of Sripur 8 Judhagunj, father of 10 sons and daughters explained difficulties to raise them. In the past, he used to work in his neighbour’s field to feed his family. Ever since his neighbor’s land is covered with sand, he lost his job. He has been unable to build a good house for him after his house, cattle and clothes were all washed away by the flood. He spent fifty thousand rupees which he received from the government during his wife’s medical treatment. More misery added to his pain after his wife passed away. He waits for his son to arrive, who works in Kathmandu and earns four thousand rupees every month because he told even if he wants to work, he can’t find one.
Barahim’s neighbour 68 years old Mohammad Idris owns 9 Bigha of land that is covered by sand. He has built a new house after receiving fifty thousands from the government after his previous house was damaged by the flood. He has received half amount of compensation for his land. Till now he has been using the same amount to feed.Whenever someone asks about flooding his eyes become tearful.
Idris and Barahim are mere representatives of the Koshi flood victim. There are many flood victims like them who are compelled to live staring at the sand everyday. Whenever a new individual arrive, they run towards them in hope that they might be there to relief them. One can repeatedly hear their request to let the government know that they are unable to feed themselves and are tired asking for relief. Although there were lots of demonstrations organized in the name of flood victims very few actually received the relief. The flood victims complained that smarter people who made themselves heard have built away houses and bought lands. Still some are facing problems in houses for clean drinking water and sanitation. There is scarcity of warm clothes to wear during the winter season. Because of the sand the problems of eyes and ear soring and diarrhoea has not reduced. They complained that the financial aid that arrived to relief the disaster hit people was misused therefore situation has remained as same.
The Government has divided the flood hit areas into three categories. Fully agricultural area is classified as green, partly agricultural areas into yellow and agriculturally poor areas in red. The flood victims complained that those who lived in areas that were classified as green and yellow received seeds of cereals, fertilizers, pumps for irrigation but victims who lived in red areas didn’t received any support. Those who have land have borrowed money, brought soil in tractors and have grown vegetables.
On August 18, 2008 when Koshi river broke it’s eastern bank, fortytwo thousand people were affected in Sunsari district in East Nepal. After the bank was damaged water from seven tributaries swept into Kusaha, Sripur and Haripur Village Development Committee and most people lost their property. World Food program has stopped distributing its relief program 10 months ago. After the relief was ceased they have been facing trouble to feed themselves every day.
Photo story – Lost dreams
The victims are iving under the miserable condition