Sunday, December 12, 2010

Kosi revisited 2010

The basti of Bhanwartola comes under Sinduwari ward (15/16) of Shahpur Panchayat ,Gwalpada block in the district of Madhepura,Bihar. This settlement of around 400 households resides now beside the canal embankment.These people lost everything during the Kosi flood of 2008 and were residing on the embankment for almost two years before their houses could be built, hand pumps installed, buildings repaired.

There has been noticeable change from almost a year back when we were here.At the beginning of east canal  embankment, we saw construction work going on the culvert and sluice gates being worked on and replaced. After driving a few kilometers on the embankment we reached Bhanwartola.
 The first thing one noticed was that the school building was repaired almost new and about 40- 50 children were having mid day meals in the courtyard. It was a heartening sight..this place is really in the interiors, difficult to reach and it was nice to see Government agencies working here.
The region is still overwhelmingly covered with sand carried by the flood waters,but sparse vegetation has started dotting the landscape. Some farmers here are trying to grow vegetables, mainly 'Parval' as that's suited to this new soil layer. Earlier,the farmers predominantly grew food grains & the yield was nice. They hope a good year of rainfall will slowly bind the soil together & better options for farming will be available. Incidentally, after the floods,rainfall has been scarce in this region
We had been in touch with the ward member Mr.Upendra and he had prepared a list of beneficiaries who needed the blankets most. They were mostly old people, masomaat or widows and people from poorest section of this basti.These people were earlier given a stamped piece of paper bearing their name/representatives name which they submitted to us after they received the blanket. 
In all, around 200 blankets ,400 odd set of clothes & 100 set of woolens including shawls, woolen sheets, bed sheets, winter caps, scarves etc for for women & children were given out to the beneficiaries. We had carefully marked & packed each dress set separately for different age groups. We distributed the relief materials to everyone who was there at the site.
Acknowledgment in the form of thumb impression/signature were received on the beneficiaries list.

This effort could be carried out because of people like Ms Bhawna Agrawal(Tempe,AZ) who sent us funds for 150 blankets and by members of our group namely Saroj, Agnivesh & Sunil Singh (US),Divyanshu Ji ,Dilip Ji & Ashok  sharma(Bangalore), Anand Guneshwar (Gandhinagar) & Vivek (Singapore). The details are at this link

I would specially like to thank Bhawna Ji for taking the initiative and contacting me and offering to help with purchase of blankets for these people, to Ashok for always being there to help and to Amitesh Ji from Prayaas for all the help he has been providing for this initiative for the last three years.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Update : Progress of relief distribution

Dear friends

This is the update on the progress of relief distribution ;

We will not be going to Madhepura on 26th, as planned earlier. We will be going there between 28th Nov and 2nd December. The delay is caused mainly due to unavailability of commercial vehicles (sumo /mahindra pik up) as all are booked or seized for election duty.  Most of the vehicles will be relieved by 27th, hence earliest we can leave is 28th.

I have procured ;

  • Warm children wear new -50 sets, old - around 80 pc
  • Clothes for women & older children - around 100 sets
  • Medicines (for de worming,analgesics,eye-drops,antiseptic & anti-fungal creme, neoprene powder,cold medications) of Rs 8k
  • Blankets & shawls - have around 60 now, will be getting some more
Now, that I have some more time I will be getting more materials for this trip .These are all in addition to of the relief materials we are buying with the funds send by Bhawana Ji. I had placed order for the blankets & should be getting them by tomorrow.

Best regards,


Blanket Distribution - Bhanvertola@Madhepura - Update


Thanks for your kind support.

We now have 400 set of cloths, on top of that we bought 150 blankets (We paid Rs120 per blanket), some medicines (like calpol and analdesics). Chandan will start his journey today or tomorrow and handover all these stuffs to people of Bhanvertola village.

I would also like to hightlight that It is not practical for Chandan to visit Bhanvertola frequently. The village is quite far and it takes lot of time and effort to reach there. Hats off to Chandan for putting this brave effort.

If you have still not decided to support this project then I would advice you to hold on your support money till we have our next plan. If you want to support this work you can do so by sending your support money to Prayaas and letting me know about your donation by today.

We need to do this, so as to approximate the items which we can procure. I hope you all understand.

I am attaching some pics which Chandan send to me.

Feel free to send any feedback/questions.


Saturday, November 20, 2010

Blanket/Shawl Distribution campaign at Bhanvertola, Madhepura

We have decided to provide blankets/shawls to villagers of bhanvertola, Madhubani.
We are raising funds for this purpose. Please support this cause as the winter is fast approaching and the best thing we can provide to poor people of this remote village at this time is blanket.

We are collecting funds through prayaas (NGO).
See below for details about  contribution through Prayaas.


Sending donations through NGO (Prayaas).

Please mention flood relief and your name in remarks section while transferring fund. Mention your name in the comments (will help us track)
Send an email with details to: 
make a CC to: 

Account in on the name of: M/S Prayaas
Current Account No. : 10447347087 
Bank Address : State Bank of India, Indiranagar, Bangalore
Bank Code : 3301IFSC code: SBIN0003301
Routing Number (Swift No.) : SBI NIN BB 147A
MICR number : 560002021

Prayaas Official Address:Mr. Amitesh Bharti,Prayaas(r),
C1-201, GreenWood Regency,Doddakannahalli village,Carmelaram
PO, Adj. Wipro,Sarjapur Road,Bangalore – 560035, India.

If you want to send a cheque/DD:Please send the crossed A/c Payee cheque in favour of,"SBI, A/c Prayaas, Current A/c No. 10447347087"

Donar seeking Tax exemption under section 80G, please donate via PRAYAAS 
The certificate & the receipt of your contribution will be dispatched by Prayaas. To get the certificate & the receipt of your contribution, Please email your name and address along with detail of your contribution to Amitesh
make a CC to:

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Kosi revisited

A lone tree still stands amidst stark sand filled surroundings which were once lush green farmland. This is one of the few landmarks that survived the deluge.

Kosi revisited: Gwalpada is a small town 15 km's south from Madhepura. This region was ravaged by a fierce flood in 2008 & the inhabitants of this region are still facing the hardships caused by the flood and its aftermath. Worst affected are those who live in the interior areas & do not have good connectivity with bigger towns of this area.

Bhanwar tola or Bhanwar pokhar is such a village. Located 15 km inside of the Gwalpada town, it is still cut out from the main road as bridges on either side of approach road had been washed away in floods & not yet been repaired.

We visited this area earlier this week & distributed Blankets & warm clothes to these people who have been living on the embankment for a long time now. The ward member of this area had been in regular touch with us after the floods & as promised to him earlier this year, we distributed the blankets there as soon as we received them.

Staying overnight at Madhepura, we left for Gwalpada early morning, around 3.00Am. We had to reach them before daybreak to avoid being stopped at other villages in the route as we were carrying blankets. We drove in almost total darkness because of heavy fog with visibility down to 5 meters at times on the broken embankment approach road. It was a difficult ride, but we managed to reach Bhanwar tola before daybreak


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