Bimal Pradhan

Ilam, March 3:

Supply of kerosene to number of villages in Ilam goes on from neighbouring Indian towns, including its headquarters, despite transportation having resumed from last Sunday. Local businessmen said thousands of litres of kerosene are flowing into Nepal from bordering Indian markets daily. One businessman from Manebhanjyang, on conditions of anonymity said, “We would be facing acute scarcity of kerosene if it does not come from India. Kerosene is imported from India even during bandhs and blockades.” According to him, 5,000 litres of kerosene is imported from Manebhanjyang alone daily.

Students staying in Manebhanjyang said even they are using kerosene imported from India. Dilli Chapagain, a student from Soyang and staying in the district headquarter said, “In Ilam, there is no kerosene. Hence we are bringing it from Manebhanjyang, bordering town of India for cooking. Though petroleum products are supplied to Ilam by Ilami Pathibhara Enterprises, kerosene has been scarce for the last 20 days as there was a blockade and transportation has remained disrupted, Sunil Chaudhary of the Enterprises said.

According to Chaudhary, supply to the market was up to 80,000 litres and this is the first such time when supply came to a halt for so many days. A local resident of Samalbung, Yuba Narayan Pradhan said, “It has been almost a month that the Nepali market is out of petroleum stock. As such, we are bringing in petroleum from the Indian market.” Besides, most households in Ilam are using firewood for cooking purposes. Thadak Bahadur Karki, residing near the market said that Ilam has no kerosene. Kerosene imported from Indian market is being used by everyone here.

Samalbung, Sriantu, Jirmale, Pashupatinagar, Jogmai, Mabu and Maimajhuwa are importing kerosene in such a way, traders said. Traffic along the border region is easy and employees in custom offices in Nepal are making the import procedure easy, traders told.