First Covid, now floods – Bihar’s disabled cricketers face a rain of misfortunes
The heavy rains and floods in Bihar have affected disabled cricketers in many parts of the state. Their homes and fields have been washed away. The cricketers were facing difficult times due to the coronavirus pandemic as it is and the floods have added to their misery.
Nirbhay Raj, a member of the Bihar Disabled Cricket Team, has been living in a tent on a street for the last two weeks. Nirbhay, who lives in a village in Chhapra block, was forced to move out of his village after rainwaters flooded into his home.
“First our fields got flooded and all the crops were washed away”, ays Nirbhay, who has been playing for Bihar for five years. “This is the first time I have seen floods like this and gradually the waters entered our homes, washing way stocks of food grains. We were forced to move out”.
The disabled cricketers were struggling as it is after the coronavirus pandemic. With all events cancelled, many of them had taken up work under the MNREGA scheme building roads and bridges in their villages, as NewzHook has been reporting. The floods have put an end to even this means of livelihood.
Savings, food washed away
The pandemic has created enough problems already. Now they have lost their homes and are struggling for a roof over their heads and food. Floods are a regular occurrence in Bihar but this year the pandemic has made things so much worse for us. – Amit Gaurav, Captain, Bihar Disabled Cricket Team
The good news is that help is coming for the disabled cricketers from the Physically Challenged Cricket Association of India (PCCAI) as well as the Bihar Handicapped Cricket Association. “The state association is being extremely supportive”, says Nirbhay. “They send us food and other essentials as well as counselling. They call us regularly to find out if we need support”.
“The PCCAI of which we are a part has been very helpful”, adds Ranjeet Kumar, President, Bihar Cricket Association for Disabled. “They have supported nearly 10players until now”.
PCCAI cricketers from other states have come forward as well. “We have sent funds to our fellow players in Bihar”, says Vijay Kant Tiwari, off spinner in India’s Physically Challenged Cricket Team and Captain, Karnataka State Physically Challenged Cricket Team. “We have supported boats even players so far with ₹ 5,000 for each player. We will try and reach out to more”.
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