Saharsa Flood Relief Work : A sign of unity of India:
Learn to live with floods than trying to control that by bandhs.
-Dr. Dhanakar Thakur
I wanted to go to serve Koshi flood victims and had applied for leaves and when Mrs. Punita Rai of Jindal requested me to join Jindal Steel’s team going to Saharsa I happily joined
I was introduced to team members at Ramgarh lead by Debashish Banerjee who became close to me in many ways by the time I returned.
There were other eight members in the ambulance loaded with drugs worth Rs. one lkh purchased as per my advices and everyone had a service mentality.
We stayed at night at Begusarai in a hotel which was hot and humid. Other doctor, young Dr. Arun Kr. Singh could not sleep and at 330 am he took batch and I too became ready by 6 am. I had not taken food at night as it was a non-vegetarian hotel and took some bananas in the morning.
We went to Mrs. Rai’s brother, Dr. Sandeep Pandey’s house who had a good nursing home. We had a good breakfast there. I asked him to pack few rotis for me which he did with a lot of sweets.
When we moved on Scorpio from Khagaria towards Mansi in way to Saharsa, we saw many lorries carrying various banners of organizations returning from flooded area.
The first we saw of UNICEF and then of some Kisan and Shikshak (Farmers and Teachers) Associations. We saw many lorries returning after unloading materials which had small stickers India-Nepal with the name of some organization which might have sent matter for twin countries.
From Mansi on Saharsa route there was flood water on right hand side all along. People were on machans on the road and at several places we saw good number of people some places only ladies in coloured sarees hoping for some relief from somewhere.
There were few camps and medical centres of some organizations. Of course, it was the lowest reach of Koshi coming from the Himalays and after some kilometer those water were destined to meet mighty Ganga nobody after that can discern as if the drop was from Yamuna or Gandak or many rivers which are tributaries of Ganga though in themselves many of them are as ferocious and mighty.
It is said that if any one finds a drop of Ganga he/she becomes pure and gets salvation. The Koshi too must have been so though she might have made havoc to many millions of lives but whose fault was that whether of Koshi or of those who tried to tame it by long barrages which were never maintained though were a source of corruption.
I am of the opinion like many environmentalists that not only Koshi but all rivers should be freed from bandhs and people should learn to live with small flood water rather face a death warrant whenever there is a breach in the embankments.
For Debashis and Mrs. Punita Rai probably water at the lowest reach too, near Mansi, in the vicinity of Beldaur, Saur Bazar and Sonebarsa was more and they took a lot of snaps. Maybe with lessened force in that downstream amount of water was sufficient to draw attention.
We were exclaimed to see at a place where a person sitting on boat was trying to bring his ox to safer place, ox was also swimming and hence, the water must be more than a meter, ox’s only nose portion was above water and the man was holding the rope of its neck. Every creature wants life and that was the most glaring example.
We saw many ambulances of Gujarat Govt. and in fact in all of our journey those were moving every nook and corner. It was commented in local newspapers one should learn disaster management from Gujarat and I recalled one of the session held on this subject at NMO’s National conference at Rajkot (23-24 February 2002). Pramukhswami Maharaj’s lorries were returning after unloading relief material. He is a grand saint of Gujarat and I had visited a medical college named after him at Karmsad, near Anand in Gujarat, the birthplace of Sardar Patel. Asharam Bapu’s several centres were in the way.
The Saur Bazar area of Saharsa is famous for pedas and in fact it could have been other Anand, if some one like Cherian would have laboured hard for bringing ‘White Revolution.’ The dairy movement has been successful even in vandalized Bihar of Lalu regime. Sudha milk parlors were successful. Mithila needs such small and medium sized agro-related cooperative/ consumers movement.
I saw Kisan Vikas Trust had opened a Khichari centre there on the way. At a place I read a banner, ”Asha Barh Rahat Kendra,” certainly marooned people can have hope t save lives from such who had come to show them a ray of life!
I read on the back foot of a lorry,
“Tata nikali, Patna me barhi,
Main Kitni abhagin Driver se pyar hua.”
At a place I found some young man stealing water pouch filled sacks from the slow moving lorry jumping in the truck on the back..
“Pani me fansa, Pani ki chori karte.”
Flooded staling water!
Debashish had strong objection on my word ‘stealing.’
Yes, it may seem a right work for any generous person like him as even Gandhi had said “hunger’s God is food.”
True, they had jumped to truck to get some food grain or other matter but were satisfied even with water pouches.
“Water water everywhere not a drop to drink,” I recalled.
We were eating bhuja which Punita Rai had purchased from some Big Bazar of Ranchi or Ramgarh and we can have comments only on such persons in peril but surely if trucks were not allowed to carry relief materials to the interiors up many more needy would have suffered.
There were huts on the waysides- chaukis and on the other side of road were cattle roped to nails.
A lorry from Seva Dal, Dehri and other of Unicef passed.
When we reached Saharsa’s Koshi Vihar we all had lunch but I pressed that some work must be done and everyone was willing to work and we were taken to the outskirt of the town, Baijnathpur, where daily Jagaran had been running a camp.
Though state Govt. doctors were posted there all persons tilted to our camp in hope of some good medicines.
I found a case of kalazar and referred to Dr. Swatantra Kumar Singh for free treatment and likewise I found other case of VSD which I asked to contact me further for referring to the Satya sai Institute of Higher Medical Scinences, Puttupurthy but who cares for whom?
On 12th September I saw camps of Bharat Sewashram Sangh.
At Saharasa, I was told by Prof. Vinay Choudhary that ahead of Silet village a lorry full of relief material was looted showing revolver though that was not the affected area and on the reference of a local MLA some persons have convinced the outside NGO that they will guide them to devastated area.
Prof. Vinay said that Nonaity, Buary, Badgaon, Basnahi villages were greatly affected where he had guided to Bharat Sevashram Sangh persons going on boats, distributing materials to many who for the sake of their honour would not had liked to go to relief camps nor they could decide to leave their homes as hooligans were looting house holds and at places some such had outraged the modesty of even some women!
At Nonaity some 500 men were stranded on one high place. Mid day school meals grain were life savers!
At Badgaon half village men consisting of wealthier people stayed in a school. For 19 days Bechan Mishra provided money for food for all assembled there. Boats carrying 100 quintals food materials had stations on such villages where they used to sell materials brought from Sonebarsa on some higher prices which was genuine. So ‘Boat Shopping,” was a new phenomenon in flood.
Such was the pathetic condition at Behta, Sahsaul, Duari, Gwalpara etc.
It is not all politicians were making image as well as looting the part of materials sent from different corners of the country.
Neeraj ‘Bablu,’ MLA of Raghopur from village Gobindpur,Madhubani near Pratapganj rescued one person who was hanging from electric wire(which had no current due to line disruption)..Neeraj took a steamer-boat with two persons and sailed himself to that place and asking others to control the boat, he pulled up the person from the wire and saved him!
But I found relief work was disturbed from the visits of ministers and leaders who hardly visit to interiors where relief had not reached but concentrated to districts where officers were centred to them diverted from real work and show was put.
When for such a show before CM, Bihar, Neetish Kumar, Jindal team was asked on 13th September to go to Singheshhwar Sthan, I declined and protested sharply. The previous night we had decided to got to Supaul’s RD 22 , away from Balua which had been devastated completely where worst suffering. Some 15,000 persons were awaiting relief though Praksh Jha, cine director’s team was working.
(Later I read on 23rd September 2008 that a doctor from Maharsahtra Dr. Chandrakant Patil succumbed to lightening stroke where he was working with his five friends. He was the only son of his parents. He was a student of MD (PSM) in the PSM dept. in a medical college at Mumbai. His team had decided to continue to work despite his death. Rightly the Prabhat Khabar has written where is anti-Bihari feeling at a time when Govt. doctors had left and I saw their suspension notice in newspaper though I felt and protested that move of the Govt.
After all without any minimal comfort any doctor on duty cannot be asked to work- all the hotels and Govt. guest houses were taken up by leaders and NGOs officials. Even thrice CM Jagannath Mishra cold not get a room in Govt. Koshi Vihar.Circit house and I fond on my arrival thee that Koshi Vihar was occupied by constables of the security guards of the CM, Neetish Kumar..I confused one Nepali in BMP for any Uttarakhandi there.
At Saharsa, Jindal team could get a dormitory but we doctors had to stay outside on our room as they could not get a room in hotel. Mrs. Rai too had to stay at the uncle of a Jindal worker, Amit’s house. Amit’s uncle Manan Thakur, an advocate and journalist was all along with us to guide.
When Manan Thakur convinced me that the way to RD 22 was via Singheshwar, I agreed for an hours camp thee where I had thought to protest before Neetish that he should stop his visit as a gesture to others so that work my be smooth.
I had also told to Mrs. Rai that I would write to Shri Naveen Jindal against the director of Jindal, Brigadier Chopra for his undue favour to officials on CM’s visit, particularly when Naveen Jindal belonged to the Congress and CM from NDA (in way Mrs Rai was taunting me that it was the team of UPA/Congress on which I had said that I came with them only thinking as a Steel house and Indian Industry which had donated Rs. one crore to my area of Mithila for which they deserve appreciation. They may also provide scholarships to some 10,000 students who may face educational deprivation after flood water recedes.
Jindal has announced to rebuilt two villages. Good that is but I appeal (and will personally meet Naveen Jindal, a rising industrial diamond on global scale) that he should rather start a power plant in the Mithila area devastated by Koshi and make some secondary steel plants. It will regenerate Koshi economy.
We do not want begging bowls just support and even politically Mithila has highest number of political seats in parliament to make one a dynamic leader nationally.
Meeta Ambani had given a cheque of Rs. 10 crore coming to Patna but Jindal sent his team to supervise work which was great.
Rajiv Gandhi had said 15 paise reaches of a rupee to final place but I say that was an all India average- in Bihar even five paise one can imagine- despite Neetish’s so called good governance.
We had gone to Jirba bandh via Madhepura on 13th September. Madhepura was worst affected district headquarter and the water was still there in low lands. There were many camps run by Lalu Yadav and Rambilas Paswan’s ministries- at least there were many banners as if in electoral competition there also.
I saw the Rail Factory’s premises and Collector ate and also a board of Madhepura Medical College on the way going to the Sadar Hospital there.
We proceeded on a way which had Dr. Arun’s house still encircled with flood water. He had come a week before and had taken away his parents to Ranchi.
There was a bridge just on the outskirt of town where water was still touching the bridge which our vehicles could pass with the help of traffic police blocking the traffic on other ends.
The road said to lead to Bihpur was in dilapidated state and in return journey I was exclaimed to read on a mile stone that it was NH 107 which was said to be built by British was flooded was other matter but I could never imagine that such not concreted road could be a NH!
At Jirba bandh the condition was pathetic yet I was surprised to see first banner written in Oriya of Niranjan Mission near the Shiva temple.
The Army personnel had camp there and in fact due to them the 407 passengers were not charged more than usual.
Army’s Medical Core had a camp there with boats and t was the last point one can go by road. Army had a medical post too but because we had plenty of medicine soon people took the form of an unprecedented rush. Prescribing in less than a minute a person became ordeal for us.
At Jirba Dr.Arun Kr. Singh(Left) and Dr. Dhanakar Thakur(Right) prescribing medicines to flood victims.Back standing Mrs. Punita Rai
We saw more than 500 patients. Brigadier Chopra congratulated us for our humanly work on which I replied in fact he deserved raise as service was doctors’ inherent duty but they non-medical persons came earlier than us to serve.
Though my company. MECON’s team had visited there only two days before but there was huge rush for medicine- which people took even when it started raining and we took seats in the Scorpio. The people who were routed by flood water were facing again Indra’s wrath- rains!
At that camp I saw a child named Neetish-later I met two other children named Neetish. Certainly CM had been popular but the onus of Kushna breach people say lies on him and I was told by some person that the relief work was a test for him and one experienced told that he would loose due to Koshi calamity in the area which had a clean sweep for NDA in last Assembly Poll.
There was a marasmic child and so other were some who needed hospitalization- I gave Rs.10, Rs.20 and going near to Ambulance Rs.50 to that marasmic child’s mother. I had not much money and while coming my sister had told me that her husband Vivekanand had said that 500 Rs. should be given in the hands of flood victims which I had not taken seriously while coming and had taken only 700 Rs. with me. Not only next day at Supaul I gave one poor Rs.20 again, to Prof. Vinay Choudhary I gave Rs.300 to give it to the RSS camp. I might have differences with them on some points but still they are the best in the matter of honesty to deliver things to proper persons at least in such calamities. Even Dr. Jagannath Mishra had visited RSS camp in the place where once we had Manthan meeting for the Mithila Rajya.
We retuned via Pastpar village was there where I was exclaimed to read the board of a residential school. The light of education is spreading albeit slowly in the remote areas too. Village Gorpa was said to be only 7 km from there from where belonged RMC medico Dr. Indu’s wife who were very devopted to me whom I had seen many years back at Katihar.
While returning I reported to the correspondent of the Aaj at Ranchi(though it was not published) an eye-witness’s account. I also tried to contact the Ranchi Express but Chandreshwarji’s person did not contact me further.
We were at Karpoori Chowk for a while and returning through the town I guessed the rush before a SBI ATM at 4 pm must be for the withdrawals of money sent by relatives far distant. Mithila even otherwise runs on money order economy and surely with ATMs and core banking money will flow to Mithila as Maithils have yet to a great extent live relations with their home and relatives.
On Main Road Madhepura, I noticed Purnea Gola and Lorik stores while Purnea was nearby district frm where some one must be at Madhepura in business in that place Lorik was a yadav King of Mithila and it is said,
“Rome hai Pope ka to Madhepura hai gope ka”
Yadavs predominate Madhepura and so Yadavs from Jablapur and Chapra came to have electoral wrestling there though it has great son of soil BP Mandal of famous Mandal Commission.
Till such outsiders vested interest will come to Mithila it will not prosper be it Madhepura or Madhubani they will not serve the cause of Yadavs or of Brahmins.
The rivalry of Yadav -Brahmin must end for any progress of Mithila. The union of intellect and valor can change Mithila.
Maybe I have one Vivekanand (doctor) or AMP has one Gurumaita today but I vision soon people will realize the truth of friendship and mutual trust and support.
After We had gone to Singheshwar- the place of Shringi Risi who was son of Shamik rishi whom Emperor Parikshit (grandson of Arjuna- sone of Abhimnay-Uttara- had put a dead snake when he was not offered water or asked to seat. Rishi Sami’s son Shringi had cursed Parikht that he would be bitten o death by Takshaka in seven days(and in those days Shrimad Bhagawada was spoken to him as a penance by Shuk Muni)..
I was on Pradosh fast that day and it was coincident that I could have darsan of Singheshwar in that Pradosh with Dr.Arun who se brother was working at Singheshwar and Mrs. Ray and Manan Thakur.
In way to Singheshwar BN Mandal University New campus was turned into a watery lagoon.
While going to Singheshwar, I had seen lorries of Bhasin Jomewala of Pune, Sarvodaya, Vadodara, a vehicle of MECON Ltd., Ranchi and also a truck of Panchgachhia Dyodhi near Saharsa. In fact I had seen many banners of local ward committees of Saharsa and they localities were the first to provide relief before any organisation came from distant area and states.
There was a banner of Gramin Chikitsak Sangh, Saharsa and at Madhepura I saw two ambulances of the Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, New Delhi as well as from the Dept. of Social Welfare, Delhi University.
At Singheshwar I saw a truck load of relief material came from the Marwadi relief Society, Jamshedpur.
Singheshwar town had water but had receded and we were told by priest that there were some doctors came from Jharkhand and therefore I was more disinclined to go there again and was in favour of visiting RD 22 where seeing the pathetic condition Dr. Jagannath Mishra had in the same evening announced renunciation from parliamentary politics.
Brigadier Chopra in the middle of Dr.Arun Kr. Singh (Left) and Dr. Dhanakar Thaku(Right), Members of team standing behind.
Brigadier Chopra had otherwise worked marvelous in distributing relief materials and rescuing many- Jindal’s name and vehicles were a known name in Saharsa division
Luckily the DM allotted a negligible place at Singheshwar and I pressed the team to go to Supaul where in the BSR College we had patients many- some 500 or more. Even Gujarati doctor on an ambulance distributed medicines there.
While returning in a lighter vein, on the name of Chopra I said a joke where some student said to his teacher Chopra as Kopada when the boy was asked to read as Kemistry for the Chemistry. We had an enjoying time. I said about a story in which ,Shake the bolltle before use,” was interpreted by someone as to heat (from Maithili’s seknai) well.
I also said that in English Ram for Lord will be meant for an animal giving wool like Mango at Jamshedpur will be interpreted for a locality where bus stand was situated.
Mananji while returning from Supaul narrated an instance a non-Maithil person(a Bengali) enumerator of the electoral roll had written as Headman as the title of Mukhiya of many persons of a village as the village Mukhiya he interpreted as the Headman like that of Bengal.
On 14th September the last day I did not say anything for the place initially as I had limited time there and the team was in packing move. I was informed that they were going to Mushharnia/ Barhkhurwa Ghat camp for which we crossed via Pipra where I gave a statement to the correspondent of Hindustan that leaders be prevented entering flooded area as they stall the progress of relief work. They should be prevented like some leaders on instance of inciting communal violence. The situation was grimmer than any violence.
The correspondent, a young boy asked me whether I was sure at the statement as it was a hard one. I affirmed that it should go by my personal name as spokesman of the Antarrashtriya Maithili Parishad not by the name of the Jindal which team I was accompanying.
Mananji informed me on my return to Ranchi that that statement had appeared in the press.
We crossed through Pipra bazaar where khaza was purchased which though delicious I took only two being calorie as well as stomach trouble conscious.
We crossed through Tribeniniganj and we reached to Bhutahi/Barahkhurwa bandh where were around a thousand families taken shelter on bundh. Those coming from boat from flooded zone were given a packet of materials containing few kg of chura,etc. I had tears and still my eyes are tearful to enter the data on the pathetic condition of the thousands of people of my area, not many kilometer was Pratapganj, Chhatapur, after which was Forbesganj where I was born.
There were families who have lost some member there. One such family who had lost earning father was photographed by Mrs. Roy . She asked someone to bring biscuits from Tribeniganj which was distributed among children who became very happy to get that though I was busy in
seeing patients; one among them was a very old mother whom I I gave full Taxim injections for four next days, after injecting one to her.
The Army personnels were well supervising there having control of all affairs. There was also a medical camp of the State Govt. Soon we had a rush to dispense medicine and there after some saree (new) started distributed there where people thronged. Though we saw many hundreds there people started coming repeating and also I had an earnest desire to see RD 22 where I was informed that some 10-15 thousand persons were stranded. Had bandh broken there entire Saharsa would have been gulped by flood water.
Unprecedented, I asked all to pack up and start for RD 22. We reached Pipra again, we had a standing lunch on road well covered by high trees. It was a sporting lunch in fact. RD 22 was some 40 km from there but Mrs. Roy said that returning Saharsa by 7 pm was essential and so we should rather have a camp in nearby school.
Ladies have some problems in such a team and I had to accept the will as after all it was not my NMO/AMP team.
We went to the Satyadeb High school where already Dr. Vijay Kumar, MBBS from LLRM, Meerut and a resident of Chapra was well serving the people. He was poste at Chapra.
Soon there was a rush as before to get medicines which was distributed most as that was the last camp for us. Dr. Vijay asked me to donate medicines but I said him that I was not the in-charge of that.(However, Jindal team donated rest medicines and truckload of materials to Ramdev Baba’s team at Saharsa that night. I was said by someone that the MECON team brought back some drugs as they did not have authority to donate. This is difference between private and Government sector and their mentality on which it primarily depends.)
We reached in the evening Saharsa. At Gangjala Chowk there was a big jam by flood regugees who were sore at mismanagement in Mega camps . CM Neetish was in the town and it was in protest of him. Flood politics will go long as elections are near.
I asked Dr. L.N. Jha to accompany me to late R.N. Jha’s house whse daughter in law , Prabha , is working for the www.Miththilaart and had been an stimulator to me for quick progress of Maithili Geeta but he could not find time nor I could go being tired and exhausted. I phoned Dr, Swatantra Kumar Singh but he also was not at home nor he did come on message. I tried to contact Dr. Prabhash Singh who was a senior to me at the DMCH and was involved in JP agitation- we both were caught a midnight out of Darbhanga station when we were writing slogans on wall in favour of Janta Party but despite many calls wait his number was not provided by his house.
I talked to Vivekanand Jha who was with us at the BSR College, Supaul camp and was busy in distributing medicines there as a Karmyogi. I requested him to join the AMP which he accepted and consulting Dr. L.N. Jha I announced his name as the Organising Secretary, AMP, Saharsa.
I had a long talk with Dr. L, N. Jha on many things . I told him that whether working for life long for RSS had I choose a path which was not much rewarding to persons of my area of Koshi-Kamla? I had even declined a marriage proposal of the granddaughter of LN Mishra (daughter of Gauri shankar Rajhans) in 1985.
We talked about Mishra brothers on the backdrop of Dr. Jagannath Mishra’s renunciation of parliamentary politics. Though I have strong reservation on his choosing Urdu as second Language of Bihar in place of Maithili, I had four meetings with him which had been very cordial. Once he also came to my Ranchi quarters to deliver certificates to the participants of Maithili Training Camp.
LN Jha is only six months junior to him and he narrated me how Lalit babu differed from him. Once a Yadv young man approached Jagannath Mishra for some canal to his village which he refused angrily.
Lait babu was there in the home and when he met him he asked Yadav about his old father. Knowing that he was ill he said that he would have a tea with him next morning. And he phoned the concerned engineer to come there by the morning on tea where that work was accepted to be done immediately.
LN Jha had narration of the story that how Saharsa was made a postal division by the then Communication Minister of India, Ram Subhag Singh was an eye opener for any social worker.
When LN Jha told LN Mishra vote face that till he was in Saharsa it was a postal division only. Lalit babu was dumbfounded on it. Someone came to LN Jha’s house and informed that Lalit Babu was shocked over some of his utterance. LN Jha went to apologize.
Lalit Babu asked Secretary of postal Union, LN Jha to accompany him to Patna but LN Jha reached next day morning there taking his leave. At 5 am he asked for LN Jha and took tea with him. After 8 am, he took him to Ram Subhag Singh who phoned Minister of State Prof. Sher Singh. He said that it had no justification. Dumka was created because that was hilly region. On which LN Jha quipped .”one can walk on hills but walking on Koshi sand was impossible and Saharsa had more number of employees than Dumka.”
Ram Subhag Singh asked LN Jha to meet him at Delhi. Again Lalit Babu asked him to accompany but he said that for Union work he will go with President and going to Saharsa along with President and others he reached Delhi and there Division was created which was later inaugurated by Lalit Babu.
I talked Prof. Lalpari devi and Prof. Vinay Chudhary who came to see me next morning.
Knowing that we are to start early 630 am was fixed time and I was ready befre she came in time. Soon Vinayji came and we had organizational meeting on the backdrop of work on Koshi floods.
Vinayji said that officers were indulged in looting. In Saharsa sweets were in scarcity as everyone orders for Kaju-barfi!
Mrs. Roy came a bit late and I accompanied them on Scorpio.
While we were returning many more were going to serve.
I saw a truck had a banner, “Maithili GoShthi”, the place I could not read.
There were vechiles/trucks from Pukar/ Rahat, News 24 hours, Sant Rihani, Haryana, BCCL, Barera, Khelari, Channel 4.
The water was receding and people were less in the road side machans than we had seen few days back.
Debu told me that the previous in way to Pipra while singing song from mobile, our ambulance had a close shave! He also told me that he got a youngest friend in me and whether he remained in Jindal or not would come as a rehabilitation worker and would like me to serve there in a Koshi clinic which I promise to to the extent possible from me.
There were trucks of Sudesh Foundation, Jharia, Umrao, Rajasthan, Binod Sharma, Ambala, Bihar Voluntary Health Association, Voluntary Health Association of India, truckload from Cipla Pharma(I thought must be of drugs needed so badly there- Dnesh Mishra had phoned me to arrange drugs for Purnea camp), of Patna Goalf Club, from Nagarpada, Bhagalpur, and not from where –there was from DAV Schools; I saw three trucks District Administration, Bhivani (Haryana).; I saw the trucks from Kota Rajasthan, Plan International, Helpage India, Bihar Group, Vidisha(M.P.) .
Yes, these are some which I could note while I was in the way - note that such flow of material was round the clock for many days and weeks continuously. On 21st September, truck of CNN-IBN brought matters from Hyderabad,AMP; Delhi, AMP is yet to send.
Last night Dr. Vijayendra, NMO, Kashi said that he worked in Supaul with 12 medicos team; Dr. Pratap had worked at Banamankhi. Vijayendra or Kripanand had banners of NMO-AMP- I did not have though I had taken one, I felt not to add one more among numerous . DR. Vivekanand, National Jt. Secreatry, NMO told m that he was passing through zero miles, Maheshkhunt (when we were returning to Ranchi) in way to Beldaur area where he was running medical camps.
Banners have value but persons have more and their hearts and souls if you can unite them with the victims who are our own kith and kin.
I saw country was united on Koshi calamity though I did not see trucks from South, maybe from distance but even if Bihari-baiter Bombay could send relief material whether it was not a sign of unity of India1
I saw a vast difference from the days of 1977. 1984 or 1987 whether from Andhra cyclone to Koshi Floods. True, this flood was unprecedented but truer the help from countrymen was equally unprecedented!
On 14th night, Dinesh Kumar Mishra had sent a message to watch his episode on NDTV which due to Delhi blasts was postponed and I saw it at Ranchi. Rightly this Kushha breach was the eighth breach on Koshi- seven times in India and first in Nepal which submerged Nepal’s 35,000 population too of 4 Panchayats.
In 1963, Bhimnagar barrage was made.
5th to 8th August twice breach was broken- 900 villages flooded, 2 millions affected.
CM, Bihar had visited Birpur on 26th July and had asked for repair in November when every time breach happens in July/August? Who is responsible?
Forests in Nepal were ordered to cut after breach?
They want a new channel of Koshi which has never been in the world anytime.
The Koshi had silt- big mounds- its sands are increasing 5” high per year and who can do cleaning of sand for 100km which will amount to 6 million squire meter, needing 37,000 trucks which will be 261 km chain?
Whether whole country will do de-silting ?
Way is break the bundhs.
All central Planning Offices are den of corruption.
Medha Patkar may become of Narmada but who will evolve Koshi?
1-2 feet of water will come every year if bundh is broken but devastation will not occur.
How we can make people conscious when in 5 million Koshi people hardly 2 lakh read newspapers!
An area where a child is swimmer ,people are drowning?
Nowhere in the world bundhs could have been unbreakable- breaking of embankments is as true as that of the mortality of a man!
For 20 lakh population 3 helicopters and 106 boats ??
Army reached after 10 days !
Assam too had 21 lakh affected in floods but no media hype?
Learn to live with flood than trying to control that by bandhs.
When we crossed the Rajendra bridge on Mother Ganga at Mokama, it was a pleasant weather and I had a photograph with Debashish.
The net many times hinders the normal writing flow and writing commitments have backlog. I did mot write/ blog for good many days as I had gone to serve Koshi Foood victims and then was busy in finalizing matter for the Aayurvigyan Pragati and Maithili Sandesh which could not have issues for long. I was awoke till 4 am on 26.9.08 and again I was awoke till 3 am on 30.9.08 to read the proofs and now I wish to conclude the article without waiting any further comments of Debashis.
On one of my last blog the Maithili activist Gajendra Thakur comments
“The rehabilitation has started and as we go by the words of Nitishji every single person will be given home, and the rehabilitation work will be remembered by the posterity, like roads Nitish can do this, is my personal hope and belief.”
I wish he is correct but that is like a dream only and there is no harm in dreaming.
The relief materials can be go to wrong hands has been already seen and MLAs or their agents have been quoted to be a party of that. The relief material from the AMP, Hyderabad when reached Saharsa, somehow it reached to an MLAs hands and he asked AMP workers to have a photo with the material at Saharsa College itself but they insisted that they wanted photos while being distributed to real needy.