People in remote areas of Banke prefer going to Indian hospitals

Published On: February 28, 2019 09:09 AM NPT By: Arjun Oli

BANKE, Feb 28: A few days ago, Shyam Kumari Chaudhary of Khayarbhatti in Banke district fell critically ill. Her settlement lies in the middle of a jungle, with no road connectivity. So her husband Nanda Kishor could not think of taking her to Nepalgunj for treatment. However, he made her sit on the back of his bicycle and took her to a hospital in Baghauda of India.

He says it is more convenient to go to Indian hospital rather than Nepalgunj as there is no road connection. 

"Our settlement is yet to be connected to the national road network," said Nanda Kishor, adding, "So, if we need health service, we prefer taking a bus to India as we reach there in just 3 to 4 hours."

According to him, the locals of this settlement can benefit if a road connects their village to Baijapur of Banke. He says, road accessibility will allow the citizens like him to get treatment in their own country. It has been almost two decades since Nepali people started living in Khayarbhatti of Banke, which shares its border with India in the east and south.

This village falls in Raptisonari Rural Municipality-4. Apart from Khayarbhatti, this area also has settlements such Gurdangaudi, Maheshpur, Kunthepani, Machapani, Banskholi, Chunbhatti and Jharuwa among others. There are around 200 households in these settlements.

People here have been earning their living from animal husbandry, producing fibers, ropes among others. Locals here prefer going to India not just for seeking health services but also for purchasing daily essentials.

People here are obliged to walk for three hours to reach Baijapur of Raptisonari. The Health Post of Baijapur is the nearest one for the villagers. Local Amar Bahadur Budhathoki says people find it easier to go to Baghauda as it is quicker. 

"As there is no road connection to our district headquarters, we are obliged to go to India even for minor illness," said Budthathoki.

Two years ago, the government had established a community health care unit in Gurdangaudi for providing health services to the locals. After the construction of the building, three health workers were deployed for the service. Ram Chandra Oli, in-charge of Baijapur Health Post, informed Republica that the center could not operate for a long time due to the absence of health workers.

"As the health institutions now come under the local government, we have urged the local unit for the rehabilitation of the health center," said Oli, adding," It will be a great relief for the people of Khayarbhatti."  

The building of the health care unit is currently vacant.

Lahuram Tharu, chairperson of Raptisonari Rural Municipality, who recently returned from his visit to Khayarbhatti, assured that the local unit would soon bring the unit in operation. 

"I have learnt that the villagers are having a great trouble in lack of health center," said Tharu, adding," So, we will be sending government officials in the next few days to bring the health unit in operation."

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