Bhutanese refugee families torn apart

Jhapa, October 16

While the country rejoiced in celebrations of Dashain, Bhutanese refugees in the camps of Jhapa could not have any part in this.

The Bhutanese refugees camp have, in fact, not seen festivities since the start of the refugees’ third country resettlement programme in 2008 that tore apart several families and scattered family members across the globe.

Mekman Tamang, an elderly living in hut number 37 of Damak Beldangi Camp-1, said, “I have been living a lonely life ever since my wife and children were resettled in Europe and the US. Without my family to celebrate with, all festivals have lost their flavour and charm to me now.”

Over 100,000 refugees have been resettled to the US and many European countries as a part of the third country resettlement programme.

Durgaman Sanyasi of Beldangi Camp also reiterated that Dashain had become dull and bland because most of his family members are scattered across the globe.

Sanyasi recounted that in Bhutan, he lived by his own customs and traditions on his farm. “After fleeing from my country, all I have now is a small hut for shelter and the charity of donors,” Sanyasi said. He said that Dashain celebrations have become nothing more than formalities to take care of.