new life with permanent homes
“If we get a permanent shelter, we will send our two sons to school,” said Rongila, a Bede woman. The Bede, a gypsy-like ethnic community is among the most underprivileged and marginalised groups in the country. Rongila is a mother of two sons – 5-year old Akash and 3-year old Robiul. Her husband, Alauddin, is a monkey and snake charmer. The four-member Bede family now lives in a ‘Jhupri Ghor’ (a very tiny traditional makeshift abode of Water Gypsy) at Badedihi village under Barabazar Union in Kaliganj upazila of Jhenaidah district as do other Bede families. The Bede woman has recently shared her dream with this correspondent as her family is going to get a permanent house with a two-decimal land as a gift from Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Read: BGB's intervention halts Ashrayan project work in Panchagarh Like her family, a total of 59 Bede families – 31 families from Badedihi village and 28 families from Kashipur village under Kaliganj municipality-- are going to get the houses in the Ashrayan’s largest Bede housing site adjacent to Majdia Baor at Jagannathpur village under Barabazar Union in Kaliganj. The Bede families are now dreaming for better life as the house construction works continue on the 2-acre housing site under Ashrayan-2 project of the Prime Minister’s Office. “We’ve no dignity and no hope for life,” said Rongila, adding that her family leads a poor life with nominal incomes earned by her and her husband.