A total of 46 households of the nomadic Raute community have shifted from Damar at Gurbhakot Municipality in Surkhet district to Kalchedanda at Kalimati Rural Municipality in Salyan district.

The Rautes, whose number stands at 143 in this settlement, had been residing in Surkhet nearly for a decade.

In spite of the tradition of the indigenous Rautes to shift their settlement following the demise of their family members, they had been residing in the jungle at Damar in Surkhet for 10 years, but eventually chose to return to Salyan after all these years.

According to Raute Upliftment Foundation President Satyadevi Khadka, the Rautes shifted to Salyan through the forests in Achham, Dailekh and Surkhet districts last Tuesday.

The census of 2011 had put the population of the Rautes - one of the marginalised endangered indigenous communities in the country - at 618. A majority of them were found to be living in forests in the far-western region of the country.

Following an incident of two young girls from this nomadic tribe suffering sexual violence at the hands of three local youths at Gurbhakot Municipality in the beginning of June this year, the Rautes decided to shift their settlement.

A version of this article appears in the print on June 25 2021, of The Himalayan Times.