Alleged famine conditions in remote areas under Chhawmanu block, LF delegation of MLAs visit distressed areas

By Our Correspondent

Agartala, May 14, 2024

Highly distressed conditions bordering on famine prevail in remote tribal villages under Chhawmanu block in Dhalai district due food shortage , lack of earning avenues and non-payment of dues of MGNREGA work . A delegation of CPI (M) MLAs comprising Shailendra Nath, Nayan Sarkar, Sudip Sarkar and Ramu Das led by leader of the opposition and CPI (M) state secretary Jiten Chowdhury visited a number of remote villages including Gobindabari, Thalcherra market, Vidya kumar Roaja para, Bibihati and Khakchangami at least thirty five kms away from Chhawmanu block yesterday.

Returning from the arduous visit to Agartala , Jiten said that the remote villages under Chhawmanu block have been reeling under severe food crisis and lack of earning avenues worsened by acute water shortages. “These villages are under virtually famine conditions and though people are surviving on wiled edibles any time a severe crisis and procession of death may break out; but the state government and the Chhawmanu block administration is completely indifferent to the crisis situation ; there is also a stark possibility of malaria breaking out in these villages as on May 7 tribal lady named Banabati Tripura died of malaria , more deaths are unlikely as there is no health facility within forty kms radius of these villages” said Jiten.

Condemning the ruling BJP and the state government, Jiten said that people of these and many other remote villages go across the border to Miami reserve forest in Bangladesh to collect wild edibles like ptatotes and bamboo shoots but after returning home they fall sick . “There is no MGNREGA work and even payment of wages for works done earlier has been kept in abeyance for a long time” said Jiten. He added that there is no government health service in these areas and people die without treatment . Even though the tribal villagers earn something by working across the border in Bangladesh the amount they receive is so meagre that it does not help them even for two days. Another major problem is that of severe water crisis which may even lead to outbreak of malaria and enteric diseases. Jiten said that the state government should intervene immediately to ameliorate the condition of the tribal people living therein. “At a time when this crisis is on , almost the entire cabinet is now in West Bengal campaigning for the Loksabha election ; they will be held responsible in case any major famine breaks out and people start dying ; we now have the only alternative of launching an agitational programme and we will do this soon” said Jiten.

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