BAJURA: Majority of locals of Gumba village in Himali Rural Municipality-3, Bajura do not have their citizenship certificate. Remoteness of the village, long duration needed to travel to the district headquarters and lack of knowledge have been major factors for the locals being deprived of their citizenship.
As many as 60 people over the age of 18 have still not made their voter’s identity card with a valid photograph. According to Jagat Bahadur Lama, ward member of Himali Rural Municipality-3, 48 of them still do not have their citizenship.
The village is home to about 200 people.
“It takes a week to reach the district headquarters from here even if someone goes with me. I could get my elderly allowance if I have my citizenship, but who will take me?” questions Tokang Gurung (62) who does not have his citizenship.
Moreover, even younger people of the village have no motivation to apply for their citizenship. 26-year-old Kalchang Gurung, who is literate, expressed disinterest in getting his citizenship.
Though the government has made it compulsory for every citizen to make their birth, marriage and death registration certificates, majority of the village locals have not done so.
“We do not have any knowledge about such registration and we are not aware as to where to get them done,” says Pasang Lama, a local volunteer.
Similarly, Prem Singh, another local has not registered the birth of his nine kids. He does not have any idea of such a process.
In lack of information and access, people of remote Bajura do not have the basic identification documents every citizen of a nation should essentially have in their possession.