Bardhana Village is a kilometre from the Nalbari Medical College. (Representational Image: Shutterstock)
Bimal Deka’s family is the lone family that lives in Bardhana village under the Ghograpar Circle of Nalbari
Hardly a kilometre away from the Medical College in Assam’s Nalbari town, the journey to Bardhanara village is a long and arduous voyage as there are no roads connecting the village to the city. Yes, home to only one family, Bardhana is one of India’s most remote villages.
Bimal Deka’s family is the lone family that lives in this village under the Ghograpar Circle of Nalbari.
On your way to this village, chances are you’ll first greeted by Seuti, the youngest of the family. She was returning from her school.
“We don’t have any roads in our village. In the rainy season, we commute by boat and during dry times we walk all through to school. I cycle halfway and then take the boat ride to school. We desperately need a road in our village” said Seuti.
Deka, the head of the family, has been living in a kutcha house in this isolated village for the past forty years. The family consists of Deka’s wife Anima and three children Naren, Dipali and Seuti.
“I have been here in this village for the last 40 years. There were other villagers, but they left. I could not go as I didn’t have the resources to relocate. We have a boat to commute and reach the nearest market or offices. Engineer and local level officers did visit our village many times, they measured the land for the road but unfortunately, the road could not be built. Our local representative did not visit us” lamented Deka.
During the rainy season, Anima takes the boat, the only means that links her family with the outer world to drop the children at the nearest road and help them reach their schools.
Today despite the challenges and a desolate life, the eldest son and the daughter are graduates and seeking higher education.
Some 12 kilometres from Nalbari, this village was limited to 16 people in the 2011 census.
With the vast expanse of agricultural fields, the village was once inhabited by a sizeable population. However, the lack of a commutable road forced people to migrate.
The family lives without an electricity connection as it has not reached the village yet. Arunodya is the only government scheme that has benefited the family to date.
Known for high agricultural yield, former Chief Minister of Assam Bishnuram Medhi visited the Bardhanara village a few decades back.
“I farm in the agricultural land and rear animals. This is our only source of income. I do feel deserted at times but I sincerely believe that if a road comes up then this village can regain its past glory” said Bimal Deka.