A pregnant woman had to walk several kilometres in a riverine village in Lakhimpur district to catch a ferry to reach the hospital for institutional delivery.

The incident took place at No. 1 Gereki village in Bhimpora Gaon Panchayat under Bogeenadi Rural Development Block of Dhakuwakhana sub-division of the district on Tuesday afternoon.

No. 1 Gereki village, located along river Subansiri, which has been affected by erosion, has no connectivity facilities and there is no access to 108 ambulance service.

The woman in her labour pain was helped by two other women to walk a considerable distance to catch the ferry on river Subansiri in Bhimpora.

After crossing the river, she again had to walk several kilometres on sand in the other side of the river to reach No. 2 and No. 3 Gereki villages from where the road starts to reach Bogeenadi Model Hospital.

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The non-existence of a proper motorable road and bridge over river Subansiri has been the biggest obstacle for all kind of basic amenities including medical service in the riverine areas of Lakhimpur district.

On September 27 last year, one Yakasi Mili died en-route to North Lakhimpur Civil Hospital as she was being carried on a horse- cart in the Ghunasuti area of Lakhimpur district.

On June 10, 2019, one Bobita Mili died at Mahatma Gandhi Model Hospital in Narayanpur of the district for the delay in her transportation due to non-existence of roads in the riverine area of Chakiyal Chapori.

She was carried on a hand cart from her village and then on a boat to cross river Kachikota which resulted in the delay to get emergency medical care.

A few days later on June 20, the body of a young girl, Menaka, daughter of Debananda Doley, had to be carried on a jute bag to their village after she died on a country boat after returning from the hospital in North Lakhimpur at Moroliyaghat of Luit-Khabolu riverine area of Lakhimpur district.

On August 17, 2018, Sushil Kumar Payeng, a college teacher at Sri Sri Pitambar Deva Goswami College in Majuli, died while being taken from his village at Pathorichuk in riverine Luit-Khabolu area of Lakhimpur on a hand cart to Garmur hospital after he suffered a stroke.

The hospital is situated 10 km away from the village and is separated by Luit stream.

In less than two months in October 2018, Sushil’s father Sashidhar Payeng, a 70-year-old retired headmaster of a school, died on a hand-oared boat when he was taken to the same hospital.

On September 12, a pregnant woman gave birth to a child on a boat amidst inclement weather while being transported to the hospital in the Khabolu area of Lakhimpur district.

Farhana Ahmed

Farhana Ahmed is Northeast Now Correspondent in North Lakhimpur. She can be reached at: farhana.ahmed777@gmail.com