‘I wish god would give the authorities an ear to listen to the voices of the victims’

‘I wish god would give the authorities an ear to listen to the voices of the victims’

“People say it was God’s injustice to let that earthquake happen to us. But I have faith in God. Just imagine how much worse it would have been if the earthquake happened at night time, or on a weekday. Scientists forecast that if a big earthquake hits, Kathmandu would be totally destroyed. But look, we are still alive and I hope God will continue to look after us. But the government is not looking after us. They are the ones who are unjust. Many victims still live in temporary shelters and their needs are ignored. I am here today to pray so the souls of that day may rest in peace. I just wish God would give the authorities an ear to listen to the voices of the victims, an eye to see their pitiful situation, a heart to feel their emotion and a hand to finally do something for them.”

Photo: Enika Rai

‘They have not told me the name of his disease. They just said my son will never be normal’

“They wanted to kill my son because he is not normal. That is why I left my husband and his family in Ramechhap. That was 15 years ago. Since then I have been living here. I work as a maid so that I can rent a room and take care of my son.

“But then the earthquake came and now I live in this camp. It is very difficult. My son cannot control his voice and he is very loud. The others here get angry about him and complain. We are not part of the community here. I want to move, but nobody will rent me a room because of him. So I have to continue here.

“Every day I take my son to the school for disabled children. It is tough, because he cannot walk by himself. I put my arms around him so he does not fall. It’s even worse here in the camp because the paths are not straight. So every morning we stumble on the way together, and in the afternoon we stumble back.

“Whenever I can afford it, I prepare noodles for him. It’s what he loves most. It makes me happy to see him full of joy and relaxed. The doctors have given me some medicine, not to cure him, just to calm him. They have not told me the name of his disease. They just said my son will never be normal.

“But all the hardship does not matter. Because of all what happened during the earthquake I love my son even more than before. We all have lost so much, but I still have him.”

Photo: Sven Wolters

‘We became best friends because of the earthquake’

“We became best friends because of the earthquake. Her house collapsed and her family was moved to this camp, even though they are not from around here. Then she got admitted to the same school I am going to. First I saw her there and when I saw her again later in the camp, I talked to her. And since that day we became best friends.”

Photo: Pratik Rana

‘Prince Harry’s visit does not make a difference at all’

“Prince Harry’s visit does not make a difference at all. He only came here because of Beckham. At least Beckham played football with my nephew when he was here a few months ago. But nothing change even then. I have heard much about donations provided from around the world, but it has not reached us.

Photo: Pratik Rana

‘They told me I can’t receive anything because I only have a daughter’

“My daughter was born with a disability. Since my husband died 20 years ago, it has been me and my daughter against the world.

“Being a woman in this society is difficult. As a woman, you are born with the responsibility of a family. Your life begins and ends with the family. I lost my house and everything inside it in the earthquake. Like the rest, I stay in a temporary tarpaulin tent. I can’t go anywhere to work because there is a constant fear that anyone can enter it and my daughter won’t be able to fend for herself because of her mental impairment. I have no sense of security. I am scared of this generation. I am scared of the men.

“As woman in this village, I have no rights. I haven’t received the 15,000 NPR that was pledged to every family that lost their homes. All the times I went to the local authorities, they gave me a list of excuses. Then they told me I can’t receive any money because I only have a daughter, and there is no point in getting relief as I don’t have a son. Now I have started believing my daughter is a burden to me. But neither can I kill her, nor can I throw her away.