SAPTARI, Sept 1: Dhiwaga village in Saptari would be popularly called a ‘food zone’ due to its abundant production of food grains. Over the years, the small village with around 1,000 households was gradually shrinking. Floods every monsoon and the changing course of the nearby Belan river was taking its toll on the land. This impacted the production of rice, maize and wheat in Dhiwaga. According to the locals, all their land have now turned into a desert.
“Ours was an extraordinary village. It would be called a food zone,” reminisced Rajlal Yadav, 69. “Now we are facing a food crisis despite working equally hard,” he added.
According to Yadav, there was a huge pond at the center of the village. That was very deep and wide. But that disappeared over the years due to floods. “Every wrong thing happened just in front of our eyes. We are now so helpless,” he laments.
Another local of the village, Indradev Yadav said his village has been ‘washed away’ by the river. “Our very fertile land was taken away. The river took away everything from us,” he said. “Everything was so great as early as two decades ago,” he added.
Villagers say that the floods of 1990 badly hit them. After that, floods have been almost regular and most disturbingly, very unpredictable. “We cannot grow anything in our land now. There is only sand everywhere. We do not know what to do now for survival,” Indradev wondered.