Where birth attendant is the only hope


Lack of proper road prevents women from going to hospital

KORAPUT: Institutional delivery is something that is unheard of in this village. Tucked away in a remote area in Kotpad block in the district, not a single woman in Tentulipadar has ever been to a hospital or any recognised institution to give birth to a child.

One will be mistaken to infer that the women in the village are ignorant of the facilities available today. And, it is astonishing to know that lack of a motorable road is what prevents them from availing of the facilities.

The village is virtually cut off from the main area, as a slushy paddy field is the only path one needs to take to reach it.

And no vehicle can dare tread the path, and those who venture are bound to get stuck in the soil.

Wonder who then will come to the rescue of pregnant women when the need arises? “Who else, the traditional birth attendant,” says Lakhmu Nayak, an elderly person in the village.

“In fact, Sanadi Nayak and Damayanti Nayak of the village, who are expecting a child, will soon be calling Mula Durua for assistance in the hour of need,” Lakhmu adds.

Food supplements

Another worrying factor for the families of these two women is the sourcing of medicines from the block headquarters, which is 35 km away from the village.

The women, however, were registered by the anganwadi worker. Considering the economic conditions of the expectant mothers, they are supplied with folic acid and other tablets.

But this alone isn’t enough. On a diet of just rice gruel, they are in need of food supplements too.

“There is no work available in the village to support them with good food,” rues Aintu Durua of the village.

The only work available was the laying of the village road. But here too there is a problem. Persons like Dhanurjaya Durua, who worked on the road project for 45 days under the NREGA scheme, are yet to receive wages.

Lack of basic infrastructure and other facilities makes Tentulipadar a godforsaken place.