KHOTANG, Aug 4: Hit by a long drought followed by heavy rains, Haleshi Tuwachung Municipality of Khotang district approached different ministries, requesting them for food supply, road maintenance and drinking water management.
After drought hit the farmers' maize fields, 10 days long heavy rain from July 10 resulted in the blockade of roads connecting all 11 wards inside the municipality. Due to the lack of alternative roads, the municipality is suffering from food shortage while sources of drinking water at various places remain damaged. Faced with such crisis, the municipality requested the home ministry, Ministry of Water supply, Ministry of Physical Planning and Transport Management, Ministry of Local Development and General Administration, Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies for help.“We have requested Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa for food supply and relief, Water Supply Minister Bina Magar for the maintenance damaged drinking water sources, Ministry of Physical Infrastructure for reconstruction of blocked roads and Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies for food supply," said Haleshi Tuwachung Mayor Iwan Rai.A meeting of the municipality held on July 31 decided to request the central government for help.
According to Mayor Rai, food shortage has already hit the wards including Bahuni Danda, Dikuwa, Chyasmitar as the maize plants were completely destroyed by the drought. Maize sown after the drought has just started sprouting. “On the one hand, transporting supplies is impossible as the road leading to the market is blocked. There is not even enough food to barter. On the other hand, farmers who were dependent on green maize for surviving the season are now faced with food shortage,” Rai said, “Immediate reconstruction of the road is a must.”
After the rainfall disaster, a team of Mayor Rai inspected the affected areas from last Saturday to Sunday. Mayor Rai along with Ramesh Poudel, central chairman of Youth Association, chairman of Nepal Communist Party Haleshi Tuwachung Committee, Surendra Rai in the team reached different ministries requesting for relief.