COVID Fatalities Of Barpak Alarming

Barpak in Gorkha district has witnessed surging deaths of its people for the past few days.

From mid-May, 13 deaths were reported in the village, said a local Jit Bahadur Ghale. Among them, 12 died in Barpak and one while undergoing treatment at a Chitwan-based hospital.

“Three people died here on Wednesday and one died in Chitwan,” said Ghale. More than 70 per cent of the households have patients of common cold and fever. The situation is dire here,” he said.

Barpak, which was the epicenter of the 2015 earthquake, has witnessed 10 deaths in a week. Most of the dead had symptoms similar to COVID-19.

“Two died in our Dalit settlement, I could not even save my brother,” a local Suk Bahadur BK said. “My family has shifted to a pig farm, leaving behind the village.”

Barpak is inhabited by different communities, including Gurung, Ghale, and BK, and has around 1500 households. Among them, 1200 are clustered at a place.

“We, on behalf of the rural municipality, have given our best effort to serve the people,” said Chairman of the Barpak Rural Municipality Bishnu Bhatta. “We have asked the provincial government for help, which is sending a special team of health workers, including doctors,” said Bhatta, adding, “Various social organisations and government authorities are also asked to help in creating awareness and helping the needy.”

Since the place is cold throughout the year, many people with the common cold are found in abundance there. But unlike in the past, the spiking death rate has shocked everyone. Many are alarmed by the spread of the coronavirus. A total of 63 people were found infected with the virus as of today there.

Among them 44 tested positive for the virus through antigens and 19 through RT-PCR tests. Many people are reluctant to get tested. “Our team reached the village twice to collect swabs, but not many people showed up,” said a health worker at the rural municipality Modraj Bhatta.

“It is becoming increasingly difficult to diagnosis the people because they don’t want to talk about their health issue openly. Only 18 people came to get tested while we had 380 antigen kits,” added Bhatta.

Though the virus has spread at the community level, people are not abiding by the health safety protocol, and hundreds of people are seen participating in funeral processions. They are also doing all their chores outside the home and on the farm.