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Mountain came to Mahammad!

Mountain came to Mahammad!

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Working tirelessly for the last 30 years, Laungi managed to bring a `mountain spring’ to his village by digging out a dedicated path in the hills.

In a reversal of sorts, he almost made the `mountain come to Mohammad.’

Ora Kaaj Kore,

Ongo, bongo, kolinger samudra nadir ghate ghate…

(They work tirelessly /

In the field,in the ghats of sea or rivers of Bengal, Bihar and Odisha…..)

Tagore once wrote about the farmers and labourers who silently toil throughout the day in the field for the desired yield of their produce.

Except for Tagore and a few lion hearts, their tale of deprivation and unmatched struggle is often winked at by the rich and the haves.

There have been some exceptions though.

Recently, the tale of a silent yet sustained struggle of a Bhumihar farmer of Bihar surfaced  that saw him catapulting to overnight fame across India..

Not because of his fight against the Naxalites or the government in power which sometimes makes Bihar hog the limelight….

But because of his overwhelming determination, perseverance and courage to fight against all odds of nature as well as fellow human beings.

Meet Laungi Bhuiyan, 67, a marginal farmer from Gaya district of Bihar. In a reversal of sorts, he almost made the `mountain come to Mohammad.’

Working tirelessly for the last 30 years, Laungi managed to bring a `mountain spring’ to his village by digging out a dedicated path in the hills.

And his gritty tale is reminiscent of another plucky farmer of Bihar Dashrath Manjhi who  worked for 22 years to carve out a path in the hills after his wife died falling off the mountain.

Laungi is like any other agri-labourer of his clan, silently toiling away in the field and tending his herd of cattle in the adjoining hill.

The pain of poverty has never got the bigger of an iron resolve within him to overcome hurdles.

Kothilawa in Lahthua area of Gaya in Bihar, home to Bhumihars, a lower caste in social parameters, from where Bhuiyan hails, has all along been dogged by rough terrain with little source of potable water.

Hemmed in by dense forest and mountains, Kothiwala that lies about 80km away from the district headquarters, has a reputation for being a Maoists’ refuge.

And the major occupation of the villagers is farming and animal husbandry.

But for the young Bhuiyan and his co-villagers, the rugged nature of the land and an acute scarcity of water stood on the way of farming.

While a majority of them were forced  to seek their fortune elsewhere in the country, Laungi chose to stay back and vowed to change his village.

The idea was to connect a hilly spring with his canal that would travel nearly three and a half km to his village.

A daringly daunting task indeed ……!

And mind you, there was no irrigation engineer to guide and assist him in his solo endeavour.

Leading alone from the front, Laungi, a sturdy young man then, embarked on a mission to bring water from the hills to irrigate the fields in the village.

“Everyday, when I went to the nearest hill with my cattle for grazing,  I used to carry a basket and a spade. As the cattle grazed, I started to dig along the slope of the hill,” Bhuiyan was quoted as saying by a local Hindi channel in Patna.

The idea was to connect a hilly spring with his canal that would travel nearly three and a half km to his village.

A daringly daunting task indeed ……!

And mind you, there was no irrigation engineer to guide and assist him in his solo endeavour.

And no extra hand either to run the spade or carry the basket ever !

For the last 30 years, Laungi remained steadfast on his mission and slowly kept on digging the canal single-handedly.

“It was extremely tough to work during the rains as the slush and mud turned the slope slippery; I suffered nasty leech attack several times, but somehow carried on.”

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As Bhuiyan recalled  his tale of gritty resolve, wiping  hairs which by now turned grey from black, eyes glistened and he struggled in vain to hide tears.

Yet, Bhuiyan never budged from hope and his resolve. His solo toil took a massive toll on his health that has now turned frail.

Success did not elude him as obstacles failed to vanquish his mission.

Last month, when the spring water fed by incessant rains finally reached his village through the canal, the entire community burst into a mindless feat of spontaneous joy, crediting him with profuse love and gratitude.

Shortly, the news travelled beyond the precincts of Kothiwala.

An enterprising local journalist tweeted Bhuiyan’s spectacular feat and tagged Anand Mahindra (Mahindra Group chairman) .

In his report, the journalist mentioned Laungi’s lone desire at this moment –a tractor.

Mahindra who has not missed the tweet, retweeted on Sep 18 that his company would be honoured to honour this brave lion heart with a tractor at the earliest.

“As you know, I had tweeted that I think his canal is as impressive a monument as the Taj or the Pyramids. We @MahindraRise would consider it an honour to have him use our tractor,” Anand Mahindra wrote in his retweet.

And Anandji lived up to his word.  He directed his officials to ensure that the delivery of the tractor was done at the earliest.

Within the next 48 hours, a decorated Mahindra tractor was seen parked in the courtyard of Laungi Bhuiyan !!

Bhuiyan’s tale and  name haven’t perhaps, yet made it to the Guinness Book of World Record or Ripley’s Believe It or Not.

Need a volunteer to forward this tale;  is there any, by the way ?

Also Read : Bhojpuri ‘Girmitya’ Song: Diaspora Love!

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