The plight of the people living in three villages encircled by four rivers in Aul block of Kendrapara district of Odisha has drawn attention of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC). The NHRC has sought an action-taken-report (ATR) from Odisha Chief Secretary on the alleged denial of basic facilities for human life towards those river-locked villages, officials said today.
Taking cognisance of a petition made by rights activist Sangita Swain, NHRC sought initiation of ameliorative measures for an early end to the plight of the people of Ekamania, Dakhinadiha and Nalapahi villages. The panel asked the Odisha government for compliance of an ATR within three weeks, said officials here who received the NHRC ruling today.
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The three villages were encircled by Bramhani, Karaswata, Pathsala and Hansua rivers leaving over 4000 people virtually in the medieval age, Swain had said in her petition. They live in far-flung areas, almost isolated, and deprived of facilities of road connectivity, potable water, health services, educational infrastructure as well as electricity, Swain claimed.
Though the government had set up a school there in 2007, it remained locked up for most part of the year due to inaccessibility of the areas, according to the petition. Ninety per cent of residents do not have toilets and poverty alleviation and social security schemes do not reach them, Swain said.