Barela Tribesman Shows the Road ahead in MP

Gyan Singh, 40, a Barela tribesman has emerged as latter-day Dasrath Manjhi of Madhya Pradesh.

Published: 03rd June 2014 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 03rd June 2014 12:39 AM   |  A+A-

BHOPAL:  Gyan Singh, 40, a Barela tribesman has emerged as latter-day Dasrath Manjhi of Madhya Pradesh. Just like Manjhi, who single handedly carved out a road through a mountain in Gaya, Bihar, Singh has managed to lay a three km-long road at Gumadiyakhurd village of Barwani district, 410 km from here.

A marginal farmer, Singh  got the inspiration to build the road some four years ago. According to Vijay Sharma, a local government official, Singh had suffered an injury which  left him temporarily incapacitated. Even though he was forced to seek urgent medical help, the region’s lack of road connectivity meant that the villagers had to physically carry him to the doctor. And the incident spurred him into action.

“No vehicle could come to his hamlet because of the mountain and hence when he was taken to the local hospital, the villagers had to carry him in a bag which was held by four people. After he recuperated, Singh, with basic tools such as  hammer,chisel and shovel started working on carving out a road,”  Sharma said.

The 250-odd residents of  Mel-Faliya, a tribal hamlet of Gumadiyakhurd village where Singh and his five children live, soon joined the gargantuan task . “Initially Singh was aided by his wife Salu Bai and brother but soon the other villagers  saw the benefit of having a road and started helping him. In the last phase, almost 100 villagers worked for 15 days to make this happen. The road was finally completed  five days ago,” Kailash Arya , a villager said.

The tribal hamlet , which was once cut off from civilisation and avoided by government officials because of the difficult terrain, has now become easily accessible.

“Now, we can go from one faliya ( local term for a hamlet) to the other more easily. This will help us to socialise with other people. During monsoon, we would be cut off from the village and even small things like purchasing  fertilisers and medicines would become impossible,” Ramesh, a local resident said.


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