The Koilakh Village.

The Times of India had once published a full page article about the “Koilakh” village. The original intention of the writer was to highlight the changed socio-political-economic equations after the ascendancy of Lalu Prashad Yadav.But the writer was so much enamored by the beauty, scenic as well as cultural, that he ended of gushing his admiration for this beautiful land of peace and tranquility.

Just 14 kms.east of Madhubani district town, Koilakh is regarded as the most progressive village of the region. Some consider it as the Ideal village to live in.This is an ancient yet very well planned village. The road layout is outstanding. There are two main roads crossing the village in the middle and these are connected by several arterial roads. There is an outer road encircling the whole village as well.Nothing is haphazard and everything seems to have been executed after much thought.

Cast combinations were paramount in earlier days and the way each caste has been provided separate dwelling space is really astounding. Each one has access to roads, ponds and other utility services.

The population of the village is around seven thousand, half of which constitutes of Backward and Dalits castes.Rest are Brahmins known for their intellectual accomplisments and other achievements.There are hundreds of engineers,Doctors,Lawers,Academics,Bureacrates,Writers,Journalists,Corporate Executives,Poets and enterprising individiuls who have execelled in their respective fields,all across the globe.Away from petty politics this village was way ahead in every affairs not only in Madhubani district but in the entire state of the then undivided Bihar.

Nothing was extreme here and everyone had access to school and other fascilities.As a result, the disadvantaged strata of society was also much ahead of their fellow caste brethern of other villages and towns.Dr.Pitamber Shah,MotiLal Thakur,Jagdish Shah,Raj Kumar Shah,Mahavir Paswan and many others were not a Brahmin yet they did not feel any discrimination and excelled in their profession.Motilal Thakur,returned from abroad and establised a Charitable hospital in coordination with Rtd.civil sergeon Dr.S.S.Jha.Despite of horrific roads, specialists Doctors from Darbhanga used to visit weekly here and give treatment to poor and severally ill people.But, unfortunately, the initial altruistic enthusiasm seems to have died down and the hospital wears desearted look now.

Similar initiative were planned by illustrious doctors like Dr,Bhavnath Mishra,and Dr.Mohan Mishra but that did not fructify and their dream to serve their village remained largely unfulfilled.

Once, the Koilakh Government hospital was well managed and Dr.N.N.Das assimilated so well within the society that for years he had become an integral part of the mainstream village life.Later, Dr.Beni Madhav too became the part of the villege.These two lived with their families and their children went to the village school.

Now on paper the status of this government hospital has been upgraded and the strength of staff has been augmented upto 27 but no one turns up here for treatment.When the hospital itself is severally ill then how could it provide even the first aid to anyone who visit here. A dresser functions as the doctor,compounder,Peon,sweaper and care taker.Doctors never turns up and people have forgotten that there also exists a government hospital.

Earlier there were several medical graduates who were practicing in the village but all moved away once the politics started to vitiate the social atmosphere. Educational fascilities were satisfactory in earlier days and educational system per se was in no way discriminatory to anyone. There are still several primary schools but the middle school which earlier functioned under the guidance of B.N.Jha was truly outstandind.Never ever any teacher shirked from his responsibilities as long as Mr.Jha was at the helm of affairs.

The High school known as “High English School Koilakh” did not match the competence of middle school yet due to outstanding teachers like Chiranjiv Jha; it was up to the mark. A product of Koilakh Schooling System never felt lost among the best schools of metropolitan cities.

Koilakh has, now almost dysfunctional; librarary which was established in 1948.The collection of books was adequate. Library had indoor sports facility as well. The place was teeming with activities in the evening.

There was great sporting culture in the village and “Koilakh football team was a force to reckon with.Chandar, Rudra, Vinod, Ugramohan and several others were outstanding players and had they taken it professionally they could have been selected to play into top Football clubs of Calcuta. Playing Cards and chess were other very popular games played by hundreds of elderly men and women. Badminton too was played regularly but it was largely the preserve of a select few.

The one area in which Koilakh was truly a class apart was the theatre.The dramatic society of Koilakh was registered before the independence. It has had its own permanent stage and the green room. This society was self reliant and had every thing of its own to enact any show in a professional way. The villagers working in cities like Bokaro ,Ranchi,Patna and other parts of India used to collect money among themselves and would bring the required article during Dashmi.Mony was never a constraint. There were some outstanding actors like Jeevanand Jha, B.N.Jha, Ramanji and others. The quality of plays were always outstanding and one could see the rehearsal of plays to be enacted before every important festivals.

The core of all village activities has been always the very revered “Bhagwati Sthan”.Mandir committee was formed to maintain the place and they truly ensured that the surrounding place is neat a clean and unlike other temple complex of the state “Koilakh Bhagwati Sthan” is relatively well managed.This is the one area where the same standard has been maintained throughought these years.

Mandir commitee is capable of taking care of all the expences related to the maintenance and upkeep of the temple .It has its own generator,lighting,and sound systems.Villagers wake up with the mellifullas sound of bhazan and chants emanating from the temple.

Koilakh has a sizeable number of Muslim population also and they have been an integral part of the village eco systems.Their festivals were also considered village festivals and they reciprocated in the same spirit.Never ever there was any kind of communal disharmony.There was always the feeling of oneness ;only just they followed another religion which was respected by everyone else.

The women of the village have now formed several self help group and have started generating additional income for their families.The seed was sown with “Sewa Mithila”,which have spread many fold after the arrival of several educated enterprising ladies.

Koilakh still looks better than any planned colony of Madhubani or Darbhanga town; only it is much more green and sparsh .Everything is available in the village and this post is being written at my home,on the western bank of Nabi Pokhari.There are four Mobile Towers and a functional Bank along with a post office.

The name,fame acclaim enjoyed by the village turned out to be its worst enemy lately.This started with the decline of Congress and political ascendancy of the oppressed classes .Those leaders who came into prominence riding that wave of social justice started discriminating this village deliberately considering it a den of forward castes.No politicians even bothered to visit the village and this was deliberately kept out of developmental loop.Those who protested were harassed by the then very discriminatory administration.The oneness and unity of the village had gone and to showcase their new found prowess some anti social elements started encroaching upon the village land and roads.Now the road leading to Bhagwati Sthan has been encroached by bootleggers and no one dares to question them.This is the manifestation of corrupt administration and complete anarchic affairs.

As there were no repairment of roads and electricity,these started crumbling and ultimately disappeared from the scene altogether.The situation became such horrible that commuting to village has became a horrible experience.

There was high hope when Nitish Kumar took the oath of Chief Minister of Bihar.But the local MLA is as ineffective and useless as his immediate predicessors.Had Koilakh been in the constituency of Nitish Mishra,then the story would have been completely different.

A middle east based Engineer has taken the initiative to establish an Engineering College in the village but there would be no government officials to fascilitate his initative.On the contrary they would devise ways to put obstacle in such a noble cause.

Village politics is largely around Panchayat affairs these days.Funds flow to Panchayat has increased multifold and as per the policies of rural thrust,the fund flow is likely to be increased gradually further .

The decision of Nitish Kumar to reserve fifty percent seats for women have proved counter productive.All vagabond people who were just nuisance for society have used theIr wives to occupy some post in the Panchayat.Their wives are the elected representative but they are still confined to their kitchens and their husbands are acting on behalf of them.That amount to impersonation,cheating and false representation and anyone found indulging into that ought to be put behind the bar.But the Raj Nagar block BDO act in connivance with them and funds meant for poor and hapless are being pocketed by these few unscuprlus elements.These corrupt officials are the biggest block of any kind of development and unless their nexus is completely broken and thy are given exemplary punishment,delivery mechanism can not be made robust.

Koilakh has gone down in all developmental parameters but a few conscientious individuals have decided to stand up and fight for their beloved “Koilakh”.They would eventually succeed as they have the blessings of Bhadrakali Koilakh Devi.

1 comment:

  1. कोयलख के हमारे एक मित्र हैं मिहिर कुमार झा। हमें उन्ही की तलाश है।