Brij Mohan “hopeless” after return from India

Brij Mohan Kori lives in the Maharajganj Municipality of Kapilvastu, with his wife, two sons aged 15 and 12, and a 9-year-old daughter. He does not have any landholdings or any other income sources, and is the only the wage-earner in his family.

He returned to Nepal when he could no longer work as a daily labourer in Lakhnau, India, due to the coronavirus pandemic: “When India announced the lockdown all over the country, there was no work for me. Some of my younger friends walked from India to Nepal to get to their homes. It was about 15 to 18 days’ walk, but I stayed back. I did not dare to walk for that many days without any money or food.” He eventually travelled for two days on a bus from Lakhnau to the Indian border and then a day’s walk from the border.

He was staying in a quarantine centre in Kapilvastu, which uses a school site, when he spoke to INF Nepal: “There is no electricity, no bed and no mosquito net. There are big trees around, and since it’s also the monsoon season, there are a lot of mosquitoes.

“Nine of us use the same room, same hand pump and same restroom. We are all living in a tiny space so I am more scared here that I might catch coronavirus from another person.

“I have not been able to see my wife and my children. I am feeling hopeless, and I am concerned about how I am supposed to fulfil my family’s needs in this situation as I have no work and no money. The challenge of getting a new job in this situation in Nepal is still distressing, so I sit and worry.”

Quarantine centres are used by national and local authorities in Nepal to control the spread of coronavirus, especially for migrant workers who are travelling back into the country from India. People normally need to stay in quarantine for a minimum of 14 days.

Our Nepali partners’ response to the coronavirus crisis includes getting vital supplies to people in quarantine centres, to protect them and the communities they will be returning to.

For example, INF Nepal is helping improve quarantine centres in Mugu and Banke with vital equipment such as wash stations, protective face masks and mosquito nets. People are alo being given personal hygiene items including soap, toothbrushes and toothpaste. SAHAS Nepal is also helping people at a Bajura quarantine centre.

Stand with the people of Nepal through this global crisis

Together, we can continue to serve the poorest and most disadvantaged people as the impact of the coronavirus pandemic hits Nepal.