MYAGDI, Sept 3: At least 11 houses were swept away after a flooded Beg rivulet entered human settlement of Begkhola-6 of Myagdi district on Friday, displacing 48 locals.
Human casualty was averted as the locals rushed to safety as soon as the water level in the river rose all of a sudden Thursday night, informed Police Inspector Lokendra Singh Gurung. However, a local has been reported missing.
“Water level in the rivulet started rising since Thursday due to continuous rainfall. However, human causality was averted as locals remained in high alert,” added Inspctor Gurung.
Timely warning from local youths contributed to prevention of human causalities. Some youths, including Om Kumar Sinjal, Surendra Lama, among others had gone to check the condition of the rivulet at midnight upon hearing loud noise coming from the stream. They then rushed back and warned the locals who were fast asleep.
“If we were 10 minutes late to warn everyone, there might have been serious human causalities,” said Surendra Lama.
The missing person has been identified as Purna Prasad Paija, 48. According to Purna's mother Deu Maya, he had relocated his family to safety but he went to their home again saying he had to recover citizenship and some important documents. But he never returned back. Purna was also one among those who had taken initiatives to warn the locals of the incoming flood.
As per the preliminary data provided by the police, the flood destroyed 11 houses and damaged properties worth Rs 4.1 million. Houses of Nar Bahadur Gaburja, Bal Bahadur Paija, Lok Bahadur Purja, Om Bahadur Singali, Man Bahadur Ramjali, Tek Bahadur Budathoki were washed away without any trace.
“We managed to save ourselves luckily. Although we got new life, the rivulet took away all our properties,” said Om Kumar Singthani, a displaced victim. Locals complained that authorities failed to take appropriate action timely despite receiving information about risk of flooding. They attributed higher loss of property to negligence on part of the authorities.
With initiations from Nepal Army, Nepal Police, Armed Police Force and Red Cross, the displaced have been relocated to a temporary shelter in a community forest of the neighboring Bhagwati VDC.