Nepal | May 26, 2020

Tihar brings no joy to stir-troubled Tarai folks

Ram Sarraf/Prabhat Kumar Jha
Share Now:

Girls purchasing clay lamps for Tihar festival from a roadside stall at Ghantaghar, Birgunj, on Tuesday.

Birgunj/Rautahat, November 10

With the onset of Tihar, festive mood is in the air, but people in the Tarai remain untouched by the festive fever as the ongoing general strike enforced by the United Democratic Madhehi Front continues to make life difficult for them.

Continued strike and disruption of supplies from India for the last 48 days have caused acute shortage of essentials in the markets. Similarly, closure of factories have led daily wage earners to remain without work for months.

The UDMF’s blockade in Birgunj has resulted in acute shortage of foodstuffs and goods, which are highly in demand during festivals. Markets and bazaars that normally teemed with shoppers wear a deserted look

Pannalal Kumal, a potter at Birgunj’s Ghantaghar, looks visibly disappointed as sales of clay lamps is negligible. He said he sold clay lamps worth Rs 20,000 last year, but this year he has just managed to sell clay lamps worth Rs 2,000. “Many potters like me have been bearing the brunt of bandh,” said Kumal.

Sitaram Sarraf, a trader at Birgunj’s Maisthan, said sale of goods for Tihar had dropped enormously this time. “I have merely sold electric lamps worth Rs 200,000. Last year, I had sold electric lamps worth Rs 1 million,” said Sarraf.

Cloth seller Kausal Barnawal at Ghantaghar complained that they were running out of stock as supplies have been disrupted. “Many customers have been returning empty-handed due to shortage of clothes in my shop,” said Kausal. Barnawal complained that the continued strike had hit the locals very hard.

Pushparaj Yadav from Rautahat headquarters Gaur complained that Tihar could not bring any joy to the locals as many of their relatives could not return home as very few passengers vehicles have been operating due to fuel shortage. “Market places have opened but locals are having a hard time due to scarcity of goods,” said Yadav.

Rambharos Jha from Matsari in Rautahat argued people in the Tarai were suffering due to government’s indifference to the agitators’ demands.

Shops have reopened in Gaur, but people are forced to buy the goods for higher prices.

A version of this article appears in print on November 11, 2015 of The Himalayan Times.

Follow The Himalayan Times on Twitter and Facebook

Recommended Stories:

More from The Himalayan Times:

Nepal-India cyber war might get uglier

Kathmandu, May 25 On May 24, a hacker took down the website of Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) and placed an Indian flag along with a message on its home page. The hacker’s message read, “Just because we are silent and we don’t react doesn’t mean didn’t notice.” This is Read More...

PM Oli to address the nation at 5:30pm today

KATHMANDU: Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli will address the nation on the current political situation and government's further plans to tackle coronavirus crisis in Nepal, at 5.30 pm today. According to PM Oli’s Press Advisor Surya Thapa, Nepal Television will broadcast the address live at 5:30 pm Read More...

Ministry confirms six new cases, one fatality, taking COVID-19 tally to 682

KATHMANDU: The Ministry of Health and Population has confirmed six new cases, in addition to the 72 identified earlier today, and one fatality, taking Nepal's Covid-19 tally to 682. The infections have been confirmed through tests carried out at Seti Provincial Hospital in Dhangadhi, Bheri Hospit Read More...

Health Ministry confirms Nepal's fourth Covid-19 fatality

KATHMANDU: The Health Ministry today confirmed a Covid-19 fatality, in Parsa, taking Nepal's death  from the respiratory contagion to four. The RT-PCR test result of an elderly, who had passed away on May 17 in Birgunj based National Medical College, has come out positive for COVID-19. READ A Read More...

Drunken man murders spouse in Udaypur

GAIGHAT: A man has murdered his wife after consumption of alcohol in Rautamai Rural Municipality-8 of Udaypur district, on Monday. The deceased has been identified as Dil Maya Tamang, 43, of the Rural Municipality. According to Superintendent of Police (SP) Bir Bahadur Budha Magar at the Distr Read More...

Highlights from today’s media briefing on COVID-19 response

KATHMANDU: The Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP), in its regular press briefing, shared the latest updates from across the country on government’s response to COVID-19 crisis. As of today, 51,642 tests through Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) method and 95,192 Rapid Diagnostic Tests Read More...

VIDEO: COVID-19 count reaches 682 with six new infections, one fatality

KATHMANDU: The Ministry of Health and Population has shared its latest updates on COVID-19 response from across the country, as of today. The total number of coronavirus infection in the country has reached 682 with six new cases, in addition to the 72 identified earlier today, and one fatality. Read More...

VIDEO: PM KP Sharma Oli's address to the nation

Kathmandu, May 25 Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli's address to the nation     Read More...