Sujit Chanda (from Teliamura, Tripura)
June 05, 2018:
Mother Nature appears with all of her tranquil beauty in two obscure villages – Kakracherra and Nonachhera under Mungiyakami block in Tripura. Inhabitants of these sleepy villages wake up to clean air and are gifted to enjoy calm and serene morning every day. “Looking towards east, I enjoy changing hue of lush green covered hills. The Hill tops become vibrant on a shinning day and mother nature throws her glory – even after death of my mother, I feel her presence in ethereal beauty of Nature”, said a 75-year old Kaishan Malsom.
Kakrachhera and Nonachhera are located amid hilly terrain of Baramura and just 24 km away from the National Highway at Chakmaghat under Teliamura. Endowed with blessings of nature, inhabitants of these hamlets are still living in abject poverty. Jhum cultivation (Shifting cultivation) and collecting bamboos were only sources of earning. There is no ration shop near the villages and people have to travel long distance to get goods from Fair price shops.
“Though we are in distress, we are now far better compared to 1980-2003 period. At that time, ambience of the State was veiled with the envy of ethnic violence – sounds of firing and smell of gun powders filled the air and we lived in constant fear”, said a woman resident of Kakrachhera and added, good sense of people and efforts of the Govt helped to restore peace and harmony in the State.
Except road connectivity, both the villages – with total population is almost 3000 – lack basic amenities like education, health, drinking water facility etc and Jhum cultivation is still primary source of income. Walking down the memory lane, Kaishan said, during our childhood, we used to go Teliamura on bamboo made raft or walking through hilly terrains – it would take two-three days to reach Teliamura. However, situation improved later as roads were constructed under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana. “Roads brought some solace in our lives as now we can take our Jhum produce and bamboos to Teliamura easily and return back home after selling those”, Kaishan said.
Although, inhabitants are living in hardship and age-long deprivation, they are content and calm – may be owing to wonderful natural ambiance. Over the years, villagers have no other option, but to rely on Jhum cultivation and Bamboo collection. Repeated Jhumming has pushed down the productivity of lands. Can Tourism provide them a viable earning option?
With New Government’s thrust on developing tourism sector in the State and importantly, Government is looking to create job opportunities by developing tourists spots in the State. “Kakrachhera and Nonachhera due to their unique natural beauty would attract tourists and tourism industry may thrive in these areas if innovative plans could be charted out”, opined Chairman of Nonacherra ADC Jacken Malsom.
Local people are rather confused about how they would be benefited if tourism develops in the area. “We do not have potable water facility, but we have rivulets. We do not have modern medical treatment facilities, but still we have some herbs left in the forest – all we want is preservation of our ‘Mother Nature’”, Jacken said.
Jacken’s voice echoed in a woman’s comment as she too expressed concern over lack of drinking water but equally afraid of losing thin flow of Nonachhera rivulet. On the day of Environment Day, concern of Kakrachhera and Nonachhera people for preservation of Nature is significant and whatever developmental activities are being carried out, local people demand that Mother Nature must be preserved. (Courtesy: Tripura Times)