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‘This government neither feeds us in Kathmandu nor lets us go out’

‘This government neither feeds us in Kathmandu nor lets us go out’


Two container vehicles have been stopped just some metres away from the police verify submit at Nagdhunga Pass, the western gateway to Kathmandu Valley. Around these vehicles are small crowds of individuals. It seems to be there’s a truthful underway. But how can one host any truthful when all the nation is locked down to manage the coronavirus outbreak?

Most of the individuals, it appears, are building labourers.

The staff later inform you they don’t have anything to eat and are penniless as they misplaced their jobs to the lockdown, which is why they need to return to their houses. Some say they’ve to succeed in to Nepalgunj, some to Birgunj, another to Rautahat and Sarlahi. They had been standing there carrying luggage on their fingers.

It is Friday (April 10) night time, the 18th day of the nationwide lockdown.

The staff are pleading with the truck drivers to take them residence. But, the drivers have their very own hardship.

“Police make us cease the truck and hit us with their batons. They shout at us and pressure us to go away the travellers,” speaks one of many truck drivers.

“Then, the place else can we go besides our houses as we have now nothing to eat in Kathmandu?” a labourer assures, “We will request the police officers. We is not going to let any bother come to you.”

Interrupting them, the truck driver once more speaks, “Try to grasp. We can be in bother. We should journey this route repeatedly and the police would possibly trouble us repeatedly.”

While the driving force is talking, one other employee says, “What type of authorities we have now? It neither can feed us in Kathmandu nor permits us to go to out.”

A younger man from Bardiya of the identical crowd shares his story:

It had been solely 10 days that the 4 of us had arrived in Kathmandu and solely 5 days that we had began to work. We used to remain on the building website.

Then, the lockdown began. The contractor was Indian; he returned to his home earlier than the lockdown was imposed. And right here, we’re struggling on their lonesome. We got here right here to earn cash, so we had not introduced any cash from residence. For some days, we managed some meals for ourselves asking for cash from the shut ones. But, it has already run out. We waited this lengthy for the tip of the lockdown, however now it appears we are going to die ravenous. That is why we have now launched into our journey to our personal locations from Lokanthali (of Bhaktapur).

From Lokanthali till right here, many police personnel interrogated us. We shared our issues with them. Some of them allow us to proceed our journey providing some water to drink whereas some others hit us with their batons saying we violated the foundations. But, we didn’t have every other different than this.

The staff got here right here within the capital with massive expectations of incomes cash and enhancing their high quality of life. Instead of assembly their hopes, they’re struggling at the moment.

The sufferings and tales of many of the labourers stranded at Nagadhunga are related. Everyone desires to go away Kathmandu and returns to their houses. Their luggage are stuffed with fried lentils and overwhelmed rice. They are agency to succeed in their houses even by strolling.

After witnessing all these sufferings and listening to their distress, it looks like Kathmandu and the central authorities are completely detached to and thoughtless about these labourers and their sufferings. Amidst this uncertainty, as an alternative of encouraging them to remain in Kathmandu managing them some day by day necessities like meals, they’re charging batons on them.

As the employees and the truck drivers proceed their discuss, one other truck arrives there. After a quick dialog, half of the employees get into it.

The different half remains to be stranded. Meanwhile, a driver assures that he would assist them go as much as Narayangadh; however he has a precondition for the passengers, “You should take accountability for the police on the way in which.”

In just some minutes, greater than 100 individuals crossed Nagdhunga on two vehicles. They had been saying like, “We will face no matter comes. If we get some car, we are going to go on it. Else we are going to stroll on foot.”

Photos: Bikas Shrestha/Chandra Bahadur Ale


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