Kandhamal: Jimendra Pradhan & many of his other fellow residents of Guhibadi in Daringbadi block who once eked a handsome living outside Odisha are now jobless and staring at an uncertain future due to the crisis triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Life has never been as hard on them as the past few months.

But amid the hardships, opportunity has come knocking on their doors. With the help of other villagers, Jimendra and many others like him who have returned back to their native place due to lockdown, now have a newfound reason to work which is a long-term dream of a canal to the village for irrigation purposes.


Without any source of income, as farming has become the only mode of sustaining families, the migrants in the village have dug out a kilometre-long canal to water the crops on the once-barren lands.

“There is no means to meet our daily needs here in the village. We requested the government to provide water supply to our lands but could not get any help. Frustrated by the government apathy, we decided to build a canal that could reach our barren lands. Now with water supply reaching the uncultivated land, we can easily grow vegetables and paddy," says an elated Jimendra.

Sukalata Pradhan, ward member of Guhibadi who also helped her villagers digging the canal narrated about the indifference meted out to them by the government. Calling it as a long-cherished dream fulfilled, she gave the credit to all the villagers.

"We united to build a canal on our own. Due to shortage of water, our crop fields were barren since years but now all that is going to end," Sukalata said.

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