Traders scramble to deliver food to drought-hit KarnaliWith the Karnali region facing food crisis due to the worst drought in four decades, traders from Bajura are scrambling to deliver food items to rural areas of Humla, Mugu and Kalikot.
With the Karnali region facing food crisis due to the worst drought in four decades, traders from Bajura are scrambling to deliver food items to rural areas of Humla, Mugu and Kalikot.
“We have been busy in delivering rice procured from Tarai to various areas of Karnali for the last two months,” said Hasta Malla, a trader from Bajura district headquarters of Martadi. “The demand for food has risen by 90 percent in the region compared to last year.”
Eleven Bajura VDCs bordering the Karnali zone are also facing food shortages.
Traders said around 1,000 quintals of rice is delivered to Karnali every day from Martadi. “A single trader delivers at least 1,000 quintals of rice a month,” Bagdal Malla, proprietor of General Store, a local firm involved in the business. The foodstuffs are transported on tractors from Martadi to Kolti. And from Kolti, the traders use mule and sheep to deliver the supplies to the rural areas of Karnali. It takes two and half days for the traders to reach their destinations from Kolti. “About 15-20 tractors laden with rice travel to Kolti from Martadi every day,” said Dhanjaya Karki, a trader from Humla’s Maila.
Humla villages of Maila, Madana, Srinagar, Kalika and Jair depend in food supplied from Srinagar, according to Purna Rokaya, a trader.
As rice production decreased sharply this year, locals from the Karnali region are forced to either purchase rice from the market or wait distribution from Nepal Food Corporation. The corporation maintains rice stock in Humla district headquarters of Simikot.
People from Mugu’s Khatyad area, including Dhain, Srikot, Ratapani, Soru, Bhiee, Hyanglu, Kotdanda, Phodu, Nathrgu VDCs, are also heavily reliant on food supplied from Bajura.