In what comes as a collective opinion from Sipsu dungkhag, and as summed up by its Gup Nandu, the Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT), in its term of five years, has brought tremendous developments in the gewog, but forgot to solve the elephant problem during monsoon season.
“Elephants destroying paddy field or sometime harming people are major issues faced by our people,” said Gup Nandu on behalf of people in Sipsu.
The Gup said the residents have witnessed the mishaps caused by elephants only in some gewogs like Peljorling, Balbotay, Girigoen, and Hangay, but now elephant have penetrated and reached Chebju.
People in the gewog face huge scale problems when the marauding elephants destroy cash crops like maize found on the path of rampage.
“No public members were harmed till date. To prevent such incidents people of same gewog with the help from forestry department guard their houses and paddy fields,” said the Gup.
He said Government has donated Nu 4mn for fencing the area, and it has been done but it won’t last too long as elephants with their giant bodies can easily pass through the fences and destroy it.
Government had also paid Nu 300,000 as compensation for wildlife damages (crop insurance) which is handled by Gup and Mangmi.
He added that the amounts received as compensation are kept in fixed deposits, and only interests from the fixed deposit is used when needed and sometimes contributions are made by households when needed.
According to the Sipsu Gup developmental activities like farm roads and home pipes are completed and every household in Sipsu is now connected with farm roads and water.
Regarding a petrol pump in Sipsu, he said Tashi Company was previously willing to do it and paid Nu 200,000 for wet land but later they stopped it.
He said changing land from wet to dry is not possible so it might have caused the delay of petrol pump. The company Damchen has already opened gas agent.
Sipsu town commonly known as Gola Bazaar is the one of the oldest towns in Bhutan and till now nothing major changed in the town in terms of development.
However, the Gup said compared to old days there have been some changes.
“Branch office of Bhutan Development Bank Limited (BDBL) and Bank of Bhutan (BoB) are established for us which are highly beneficial,” added the Gup.
In terms of health services, the Gup said there are no problems as people have an easy access to ambulance and health van when needed.
Government has funded Nu 200,000 for a school and even brought materials and handed over to community. The community school will be upgraded till class six as mentioned in the 11th FYP.
Th Gup also added the issue of safeguarding the common border is not a problem. “No problem regarding outsider as we share border with neighboring country and busy with night patrolling for election,” Nandu added.
“During the five year tenure of ruling, the Government it has done enough for us, mainly in census problem and development process in my dungkhag,” said the Sipsu Gup.
Sangay Choda / Thimphu