Beki river shatters dreams of Majidbhita char dwellers (A photo essay)
Majidbhita is a char (sand bar along the course of a river) village under Mandia development block in lower Assam’s Barpeta district with 300 families. Like other chars and chaporis in the state, residents of this char too grapple with frequent floods and erosion.
About 50 families of the char village have lost their houses this monsoon. The river Beki, a tributary of the Brahmaputra, has eroded both the banklines due to which 26 houses have been completely lost in erosion.
The Majidbhita Lower Primary School is also on the verge of being eroded away by the river. In a bid to prevent the school properties being lost in erosion, the school management in cooperation with the villagers removed school furniture and other properties to safety.
About 250 students of the schools are facing uncertainty as it is still undecided as to where and when the school will be set up again.
Although many families, who were living in the vicinity of the school building, managed to remove their belongings by demolishing their houses overnight but houses of many families were eroded away by the river.
For the past nearly two weeks, these homeless families have been taking shelter in makeshift camps.
The rehabilitation of these erosion-hit families remains a far cry.
Photo and Text - Kazi Neel
( Kazi Neel is a freelance photographer based in Barpeta. He is associated with JHAI Foundation as a Development Worker )