03 August, 2021

In Mandvi tehsil, even a quake can't keep the people down

In Mandvi tehsil, even a quake can't keep the people down
It’s a truism that the human race has much to learn from Nature. One message is pretty simple: when their nests are destroyed, birds don’t go begging for help. They build it again on their own.

A little more than a year after the Earth moved that January 26 morning in Gujarat, memories of pain and despair are still vivid. But there’s also hope for a new life. The villagers of Bidada and Bhojay, in Mandvi tehsil of Kutch district, didn’t wait for the government or the aid workers to deliver them from their terrible fate. They built their lives together, for each other, from the doors and windows to the concrete salvaged from the rubble. The sense of community and satisfaction is palpable here. Fifty-year-old Sonbai’s house in Bhojay once again stands tall—everybody decided to begin the shram yagna with her house, because she was alone, and blind. Bhitara’s Nathu Harijan, a mason, left his job in Bhuj to stay back in his village, to help his brethren meet their target—at least 45 houses in three months—before the monsoons came.

Bhojay and Bidada...

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