Odisha to ascertain number of plumbers stranded in Nepal

Kendrapara : Amid reports of plumbers from Kendrapara district of the State being stranded in quake-ravaged Nepal, the state authorities have dispatched teams to various villages of the district to ascertain the number of such people.

“Plumbers from Kendrapara are no doubt stranded in Nepal.

But their family members are yet to report the matter to the district administration. The administration has appealed the families to get in touch with it so that measures to evacuate plumbers stranded in that country could be initiated at the earliest,” said Kendrapara Collector Debraj Senapati.

A team of officials is visiting the plumbers’ villages.

The list of those in Nepal would be sent to the government for evacuation, said officials.

The picture of the situation in Nepal as painted by those who could contact their families have created a sense of fear among their family members.

“It’s like hell in Nepal. People are frightened. We are going through the worst nightmare. There is rubble everywhere and the ground under us is shaking every day.

Nobody knows when a tremor will deal a blow on us,” Prasant Biswal, a plumber from Penthapala village now living in a temporary shelter at Phulchowk near Kathmandu, told PTI over phone.

“Since the past three days we are living in an open field. There is acute scarcity of food and water,” he added.

Biswal considers himself lucky to have survived the quake and talk over phone to his family members here.

“I have been able to talk to my mother and wife. But many have not succeeded in talking to their families. I know nothing about them. It has become almost an annual ritual for skilled plumbers from Kendrapara to come to Nepal. As per my estimate there are over 2,000 plumbers employed in various places of Nepal,” he said.

There is a great demand for plumbers from Kendrapara in Kathmandu and other urban centres of Nepal, he claims.

“In fact, the plumbing sector in Nepal is controlled by those from the State,” he said.

Khirod Mallick, a resident of the same village, said his two sons Baidyanath and Nand Kishore and their families were at Bhaktgiri near Kathmandu when the devastating tremors struck.

“I have failed to contact them (the sons and their families). Their mobiles are switched off. I am praying to God for their safety,” says the worried father.

It is the same with Nandini Shetty. “I have no information about my son Jogi. He is in Nepal but I do not know the exact location of his workplace. I am shattered. I am praying for his well being,” she said.