MIRCHAIYA (SIRAHA), April 7: Although their plights still remain largely ignored, people from the underprivileged Musahar community in southern plains are finally getting the governments’ due attention.
Officials from the divisional office of Water and Sanitation, Lahan, Siraha, on Thursday reached Mirchaiya-7 to install a tube-well to address the community’s water needs. “After we are done with the installation, the community will not have to drink muddy water,” said Rajesh Kushahawa, chief of the divisional office.
Long deprived of safe drinking water, the government’s latest move has the Musahars living there elated. This is perhaps the first-ever government support to the community.
“For years, we have been dreaming of clean drinking water. It’s, in fact, a dream come true,” said 60-year-old Baldev Musahar. “They are finally healing our old wounds,” a teary-eyed Baldev added, thanking the media for playing an important role in raising their issue.
About a week ago, Republica had run a story titled “The never ending miseries of Musahars”. The story, which depicted the plights of the community based in Siraha, was able to draw the government’s attention towards the issue.
Babita Sadaya Musahar, another local, expressed happiness and deep satisfaction. “My parents spent their whole lives drinking muddy water. Even I have never seen clean water. So I’m very excited,” said the 12-year old.
The installation of the tube well is, of course, not enough, and a lot has to be done to uplift the deprived community.
For example, Musahar children still do not have access to schools. “I have heard we are eligible for reservation in government jobs,” said Dashani Sadaya, another local, who is illiterate. “If our children could get education, they would not have to go through the same difficulties that we have faced in our lives. Parents like me dream of making our children educated.”
There are eight households in the community with 25 children of school-going age. However, they do not go to school for the lack of money to pay tuition fees. Moreover, there’s no school nearby. The nearest one is 5 km away.