GALKOT, Oct 3: Many villages in the country have started to wear a deserted look in recent years as people from the villages start migrating to urban areas for employment.
Many villages are turning into urban landscapes. Most of the houses in the villages are abandoned and weeds can be seen growing around them as there is nobody to look after the home. Only the elderly can be seen at the homes even with families.
Take for instance Mainakali Karki's family from Baglung Municipality-8. A decade back, Karki's family was the biggest family in the village. There were 11 members in her family. Karki's husband died and her sons, daughters and grandchildren migrated to the town. Now she is the only person living at her house in the village.
Karki's house is only a representative case with a lone elderly person living in it. There are many such homes in which only elderly people are residing while the rest of those who can work are migrating to urban areas or abroad for job or studies.
But the Dashain festival has brought back joy and happiness to Karki's entire village these days as family members and people who were away have started returning to their homes to celebrate the biggest festival of Nepal. All family members are reunited for the festival and there is gaiety and fervor in the village.
The houses in the village have been freshly painted with ochre and lime, creating the festival ambience. People have been pouring in from far and wide for the festival.
"Nobody except me lives in our house as other family members have gone to cities and towns in the course of employment, trade and business and for studies. Some have even gone abroad for work while some family members are in Baglung town which also serves as the administrative center of Baglung district," Maina said about her family. She added that a feel of Dashain is in the air as all the family members are back home for the festival.
Similarly, Harka Bahadur GC is overjoyed after all members of his family return home for the festival. He has kept combs of bananas from his backyard for ripening them to be enjoyed during Dashain.
Although no swings and merry-go-round swings can be seen in the village these days like in the past with almost all youth from the village going away, the number of people returning home has surged.
With Dashain has come the festive mood and the weed-covered houses are being cleaned and refurbished. The once deserted village has become agog with festive mood.