People in Nandaria don’t know what crime is

Hardships galore, but villagers here say their children are safe even when out in the fields

pujab

Puja Bhattacharjee | January 4, 2013



Sumitra Mahato sits in a porch with her grandson who is scribbling in a Bengali alphabet book. A few minutes later her daughter-in-law also named Sumitra and is eight months pregnant arrives with a bucket of water and a metal pot on her head. The Mahato family of Nandaria has been drawing water from their neighbours’ well for quite some time now. “They don’t like sharing their well with us. But what to do under the current circumstance?” asks Sumitra (mother-in-law). “The nearby tube well pumps out red water. It is not suitable for drinking purposes,” she adds.

I inform them that they have to make a petition to the local representative of the panchayat to address their problem. Both of them look unsure. Sumitra (wife) mumbles something about her husband being too busy with work. I try to convince her to make a petition along with all of the families who are experiencing similar problem.

Sumitra has an eight-year-old daughter and a three-year-old son. Given the not-so-affluent-condition of the family I enquire the reasons for conceiving the third child. She informs me that her son Bappa cannot speak properly and he has to be on medications for his entire life. Upon inspection I discover that the doctor has prescribed synthetic thyroid hormones. A doctor friend of mine informed me that the medication is for a condition called hypothyroidism where the thyroid hormone is not synthesized in the body and has to be supplied from outside via medicines.

Sumitra has never used contraceptives despite regular visits by the ASHA in the past few years. When enquired about her reluctance to use contraceptives, Sumitra only smile. “We wanted a third child because we are uncertain about the prospects of our son,” she says. Bappa can talk but for a three-year-old his speech is pretty slurred.

Stirred by the recent spate of crimes in the capital I enquire after the law and order situation in her village. Sumitra calmly tells me that her village is very safe and they need not worry. As I think of it I see clear pictures of children playing in the fields, women doing their household chores, scores of children going to school and none of them need any supervision. Children cycle for miles to go to schools sometimes through dense jungles and no mishap befalls them. Crime may be an urban thing after all.
 

Comments

 

Other News

NTPC adds highest ever capacity; records highest single day generation

  With commissioning of 800 MW unit at Kudgi in Karnataka, 250 MW unit at Bongaigaon in Assam and 20 MW at Bhadla solar in Rajasthan, the total installed capacity of National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) group has reached to 49,943 MW.   The 12th plan cap

Why do we need Aadhaar?

 Aadhaar is arguably one of the most convoluted public policy interventions in India’s history. It has been more than eight years, yet there is little clarity on the exact purpose of the biometric-based unique identification project.  Let me take you through an event which I witne

AAI signs MoU with Daman and Diu admin for maintenance of Diu airport

The airports authority of India (AAI), a Miniratna PSU, has undertaken operation, development and maintenance of Diu airport from Diu administration.    A memorandum of understanding demonstrating the responsibilities was inked on March 20 between the union terri

PSU performance: Better than expected

Central public sector enterprises (CPSEs) have done quite well despite facing headwinds, according to the Public Enterprises Survey (2015-16) that was tabled in parliament on March 21. The net worth of all the CPSEs have gone up and the overall net profit has zoomed. Their contribution to the cen

National Health Policy: Old prescription, new date

After much discussion and pondering over for more than two years, the cabinet has approved a new National Health Policy, scrapping the old one which was formulated in 2002. The government aims to increase the public health expenditure to 2.5% of the GDP by 2025. The policy formulated in 2002 aimed

It’s traumatic, says African student

  “We have requested more security from the government of India and the Uttar Pradesh government,” said Abdou Ibrahim, senior adviser, Association of African Students (AASI)  following an attack on four students from Africa in Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh. &n

Video

यूपी में नकल करने वालों की अब खैर नहीं

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter