Past Interventions

BIHAR FLOODS (2008) -- RELIEF AND REHABILITATION

(I)

Volunteer groups based in Patna have been providing immediate succour to affected families. Working in the bordering areas of Araria and Supaul districts 2500 food packets and clothing have been supplied at a cost of around Rs. 4,00,000. Subject to availability of funds the plan is to continue to provide assistance over the next three months. Besides large and infrastructural requirements, the needs that will not be met by government assistance have been assessed as:

1) cooking utensils

2) protective covering for winter in the form of thick sheets/blankets

3) bleaching powder and basic medicines for colds, fever and gastric ailments


(III)

We visited the flood affected area last week; our destination was Pratapnagar village in Murliganj block of Madhepura district. Whereas some flood affected areas are limping back to normalcy, the situation in many villages is desperate and growing worse as time goes on and memories fade.

The Ground Reality in Pratapnagar :

1. The village is not only surrounded on all sides by water but has been quartered by the water running through. Communication between the four wards thus created is by country boat. 

2. The paddy crop was lost en toto and with most of the land still completely submerged only 10% landowners will be able to sow the winter crop.

3. The 'compensation' provided by the government has been exhausted and several families have no rice or roti and are subsisting on fish whenever they can make a catch.

4. Of the 1000 families around 50% have lost their homes. Only a few have managed to reconstruct or repair their dwelling and sleep virtually exposed to the elements.

5. There has been a large scale loss of livestock and the surviving animals are facing an acute shortage of fodder.

6. Even though the damage to the school buildings has not been extensive, these have not restarted. Besides schooling the children are deprived of their mid day meal.

7. Several of the village hand pumps no longer work; there is no provision for medical aid and the people are dispirited, psychological wrecks who have lost everything. In the words of one villager " Hamarey dimak ka bulb fuse ho gaya"

Our Response :

1.1600 blankets will be distributed in the coming week

2.Rations will be provided to those without any grain

3.Fodder will be arranged and sent from Patna.

4. We will develop a 'Food for Work' programme so that the villagers can rebuild their homes. (The main raw material, bamboo, is easily available here.)

These are short term, interim measures but after our visit we have decided that a longer term association is required so that some degree of rehabilitation can be achieved. For this purpose two activists from Gaya have decided to relocate themselves here and join hands with two local youth to spearhead the effort. What we hope to achieve is

1. Large scale mobilisation of the people to pressurise the government.

2. Demand work under the NREGA (Employment Guarantee Act) which would provide income to each family while simultaneously rebuilding the village.

3. Get schools to restart immediately

4. Secure a long-term source of fodder

5. Arrange medical assistance for the people and their animals

6. Explore alternate livelihoods for those whose land is going to remain submerged.

We will provide financial support for the core group to meet their living expenses as long as they are engaged in the effort.

PRATAPNAGAR NAVNIRMAN ABHIYAN

A relief operation was undertaken for flood victims of Murliganj village by Atma Shakti Trust, Janmukti Sangharsh Vahini with the help of Koshi Navnirman Manch distributed the relief materials the village.

Out of 1700 blankets, 972 blanket were distributed in Murliganj and rest are distributed in other villages during Dec. '08 and Jan. '09.
Date :13-4-09 (Report prepared by Priyadarshi who coordinated the operation)

 STATUS AS ON 15 th September 2009-09-14

 

PRATAPNAGAR NAVNIRMAN ABHIYAN(P.N.A.)  

An organization   assisted for cultivation on about 350 to 400 acors of land (that is one third of the whole in normal condition). Maize, Sunflower, Mung & Jute seeds were purchased and distributed among needy families. Fertilizer & pesticides was also distributed. Beneficiary received these on lone form. The idea is to create seed bank and deposit some savings as an organization fund.

Though the curse of nature is still prevailing in the region as pre monsoon storm, heavy rain and water logging had highly hampered the crop.

Health centre 

In Pratap nagar the health centre is running from February. Sruti and Lokshakti Trust is paying Monthly remuneration to local Para-doctor. (@4500/ month x 5 = Rs. 22,500)

All the medicines had been purchased from whole sale market Patna. Shamim Aravi, an State executive member of Janmukti Sangharsh Vahini (JaSaVa) regularly assist & monitor the purchase.

In the village there is small infrastructure for the Dispensary and it is been maintain by the P.N.A. itself.  Doctor records properly of every patient and medicine given to each of them. Regular timing of The Dispensary is 8 to 12 am normally, but it is ready to meet any emergency any time (24 X 7). Sometimes health centre face lack of some medicine stock. And it is needed to create viable and better supply.

Future Plan

Madhepura is among 26 district of Bihar, suffering from drought. The government has announced to distribute one quintal food grains among every family every month (till 3 months). The main task for Pratapnagar is to asses properly the needs regarding harvesting for next crop.

Report prepared by Priyadarshi

 

 

With pucca houses in ruins, imagine what happened to the rest

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About Atmashakti

Potable water is not easily available

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About Atmashakti

With the government hiding, the villagers constructed this bridge over troubled waters

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Getting around the village

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The bed is now his home!

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Water, water everywhere, not a field to till

 

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