Food crisis looms large in Jajarkot

Jajarkot, December 27

An acute food shortage is looming large in more than one dozen VDCs in Jajarkot.

Those VDCs facing food crisis include Bhagawati, Ragda, Khagenkot, Lahn, Nayakwada, Rokayagaun, Limsa, Sakla, Dhime, Pajaru, Dashera, Sima, Archhani, Talegaun, Jhapra, Garkhajkot, among others.

While these VDCs are reeling under acute food crunch, Nepal Food Corporation has turned a blind to their plight although it has stocks of rice stored in their branch office at district headquarters Khalanga. Jajarkot has 16,698 hectare arable land.

Lack of timely rainfall this year brought down maize production leaving the villagers short of food. One food depot each has been set up at Chaukha of Ragda VDC, Ghat of Nayakwada VDC, Ghogi of Pajaru VDC and Dashera of Dashera VDC. But, these depots ran out of food two months ago.

Dharma Bahadur Basnet, Chief at Nepal Food Corporation, Khalanga, said that depots had run out of stock as last year’s stock had depleted and this year’s rice was yet to be delivered. Basnet, however, said that there were as many as 280 quintals of rice at the NFC godown in Khalanga.

A source at NFC said that delay in choosing the contractor had led to delay in supply of rice from NFC Khalanga to depots in the village. Some locals have started importing rice on mules paying exorbitant fare.

Consumers Welfare Protection Forum Jajarkot Secretary Dipendra Sharma said contractors’ negligence in supplying rice to the local depots had caused the food shortage.

Sharma said some contractors were more concerned about receiving payment than delivering rice to the concerned depots, which had hit the villagers hard.