Sunday, June 29, 2008
Ziro, my Zimin Ziro!
As I was driving on the Old Ziro-Hapoli road, I expected some flooding of the rice paddies as it had been raining heavily the night before, but hordes of anglers lining the river rather surprised me. I immediately understood, however. The fishes so hopefully reared in the paddy fields had been flooded out and anybody could try his hand at getting some. Some fields were being flooded but I could not see any broken bunds as in the previous occasions like this as the river banks are all concrete and stone now. The breach this year was in one of the most unexpected places – the bridge over Tabyu kiile on the Rake Lembo.
Ziro was cut off suddenly on June 14. Many friends, who had come from Itanagar and other places were stranded. Some were happy at being stranded at their own homes for a change, but they realized the gravity of the situation soon enough. Many desperately tried to get out of Ziro – some by Pawan Hans which never came to the town except on 14th, and some walked for miles together after driving down some distance. I followd suit on 19th. We were more fortunate as we had to walk only four kilometers.
It was during this walk that I discovered why the services of BSNL at Ziro is so poor. The telephone cable, which was supposed to be underground decorates the Hoj road all along.
I knew that mobile service is not working at Ziro and even the services of the landlines are very poor. I was shocked to see the empty streets of Ziro when I returned on 25th. It was like a ghost town compared to the normal hustle and bustle of the market area. The petrol was costing a hundred rupees and diesel around sixty in the black market. Many vehicles were off-road. Food commodities were getting scarce. Many school hostels were on the verge of closing down. The local students in the hostels were being sent home.
This was not my dream of Zimin Ziro.