Tinkar road section obstructed due to multiple landslidesVehicular movement has come to a halt, leaving the locals of Duhu and Byas to risk their lives by walking through the landslide-prone Tinkar road.
The residents of Duhu and Byas rural municipalities make several trips in a week to Khalanga, the district headquarters of Darchula district. But the road connecting these two rural municipalities has suffered substantial damage due to multiple landslides this monsoon.
Vehicular movement along the 140km Tinkar road section has come to a halt, leaving the locals of Duhu and Byas to risk their lives by walking through the landslide-prone road. The residents of Duhu have to walk through the dangerous path for about six hours to reach Khalanga.
“We have to go to Khalanga at least twice a week to buy essentials. Since the landslide blocked the Tinkar road section, we have been compelled to make our way on foot,” said Umesh Singh Mahar, a local of Duhu.
The foot trails are slippery, and there is a risk of loose boulders and rocks falling on the road section, said Ramesh Bahadur Bam, a resident of Duhu.
“Vehicles cannot operate on the road, so we have to carry loads on our backs and bring them uphill. It’s risky, but we have no other option,” said Bam.
After the roadblock, villages in Duhu have started facing a shortage of daily essentials, including rice and cooking oil. Shivadatta Joshi, a local of Hikila—a village in Duhu, said that the prices of rice, sugar, soap and cooking oil have skyrocketed in the past few weeks.
The difficulties increase ten-fold during medical emergencies, said Chakradatta Bhatta of Pipalchauri. “We have to carry patients on stretchers and carry them down the slippery slopes to reach the District Hospital in Khalanga for treatment,” he said.
Students from Duhu and Byas rural municipalities are also facing problems to reach their schools.
Saurav Singh Bista, a 12th grader at Himalayan Secondary School in Huti, said many students have to walk through the slippery road stretch to attend classes.
“We don’t want to miss classes, so we somehow make it to school every morning,” said Bista.
Daulat Singh Mahar, ward chairman of Duhu Rural Municipality Ward No. 5, said that the local unit has discussed with the Tinkar Road Project to clear the landslide debris from the road section.
“We will be able to resume vehicular movement on the Tinkar road stretch before Dashain,” said Mahar.