Nepal | August 23, 2019

Despite abolition of Kamlari system, slavery still continues in Kailali

Tekendra Deuba

DHANGADHI: After the emancipation of two years, Kamlaris of Kailali district have again started to work at houses of their former employers.

Though the government had announced to free Kamlaris on June 27, 2013, they were left in the lurch due to lack to proper rehabilitation.

Kamlari is a system practiced in Far-West Nepal, in which girl children of certain families have to work at employers’ houses from the childhood. It is transferred from one generation to another.

The government had taken responsibility to educate, provide health and food items among others basic needs to the Kamlaris while freeing them.

Following the announcement of government, 12,000 Kamalaris from Kailali, Kanchanpur, Banke, Bardiya and Dang were rescued.

But, among 3,364 Kamlaris rescued from Kailali district, 35 have again started to work for their former employers, due to poverty, according to Sujata Chaudhary, Treasurer at the Freed Kamalaris Development Forum (FKDF).

“We were forced to work again as Kamlaris as we don’t have houses to live in and enough food items to eat, a former-Kamlari Mira Chaudhary (17) of Pabera, Kailali shared.

It has been learnt that due to intense pressure from Kamlaris, people were forced to keep them in their houses.

Pradeep Chaudhary, Secretary at the Pabera VDC, said that he has also kept a Kamlari in his house.

After the governmental and non-government organisations stepped up vigilance in Kailali, the house owners’ have started to send them to Kathmandu and Pokhara among other big cities, Jugina Chaudhary, Chairperson of the FKDF informed.

As the concerned authorities failed to identify genuine Kamlaris, resettlement programmes have been affected, Man Singh Bista, Assistant District Education Officer, Kailali informed.

Raj Kumar Shrestha, Chief District Officer, Kailali, said that he would do his best to rehabilite the freed Kamlaris in the district.


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