BAGLUNG, Sept 27: Dashain fervor has gripped Hindus across the country but the landslide victims of Nishikhola are untouched by it. While people in other villages are busy preparing for the auspicious festival, the displaced locals of Nishikhola are unable to return to their homes.
After staying in the open for days, some of the displaced locals had recently returned to their homes in order to celebrate Dashain. However, the torrential rain three days ago pushed them back into their tents. This has dampened their Dashain. The devastating landslide of October 6 had driven out around 80 households of ward no 1 and 2 of Devisthan in Nishikhola Rural Municipality. Since then the victims were living on cliffs while some of them were sheltering in their relatives' homes.
Only few of them have dared to stay in their homes. Pawan Sinjali, who recently returned to his home, said "Our heart starts beating faster every time there is lightning and thunder."
According to Indra Malla, chairperson of Nishikhola-1, the Dashain excitement can't be seen in the residents of Huldi. "This year, Dashain could not bring as much happiness and joy as it used to," said Malla. Despite making numerous efforts, the village authority has failed to bring them back to their houses. "A recent study carried out by a technical team listed 50 houses as displaced, 84 houses at high risk and 94 more houses at risk," informed Malla. "We have done whatever we could to help the victims but that is not enough," he said. He stressed that the government should do something to bring long term solutions to their problems.
The ravaging landslide of October 6 had buried six people from four different families in Nishikhola. However, none of the families have been provided any relief. After flood rendered more than half the villagers homeless, a technical team from the District Land Conservation Office and Water Induced Disaster Office visited the village. After their inspection, the technical team suggested the local authorities to relocate the settlement areas.