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Floods on canvas: Depicting the plight of a marooned village

By Farhana Ahmed

NORTH LAKHIMPUR, July 28 - Silikhaguri, a village on the confluence of Subansiri and its tributary Somdiri under Azad Gaon Panchayat in North Lakhimour Revenue Circle gets submerged by the rising levels of water of both the rivers every year. The lack of road connectivity from the rest of the district leaves the village marooned every year during floods. The villagers� just demands for a bridge over Somdiri has been falling on deaf ears of the concerned authorities for years. This time too, Silikhaguri is marooned once again with entire village reeling under water.

To draw the attention of the authorities towards the plight of No. 2 Bhogman Silikhaguri, a group of young artists from North Lakhimpur has come forward in a unique way to create awareness and raise funds to provide some succour to the marooned villagers, situated less than 10 km away from the district headquarter.

Dikpal Lahon, a young artist and social activist is leading the initiative to bring artists to draw the plight of flood of Bhogman-Silikhaguri village on canvas. A group of youngsters from North Lakhimpur � Bitopan Saikia, Rajib Duwori, Ikramul Haque, Riponjyoti Das and Bikram Gogoi and rapper Kuldeep Saikia joined hands drawing paintings on the spot in the affected village on Sunday. They also launched an online campaign for the village which has been subjected to the State�s apathy for years.

Five noted artists from North Lakhimpur � Raju Das, Nilim Mahanta, Miftaul Rahman, Bidyut Kalita and Mino Patir drew ten paintings on the present flood condition of the village on that day. The price of each painting was fixed at Rs 3000. Four paintings were already sold on the spot. The money received from selling the paintings would be spent in providing relief materials to the villagers, the organisers said.

It may be mentioned that the people of the Bhogman-Silikhaguri village lack all minimum civic amenities like roads, pure drinking water and sanitary toilets besides having to bear the annual ordeal of floods.

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