Ex-Indian soldier lives in cave


Jan 14, 2018-Lahure is a common Nepali term that denotes Nepali people serving in foreign armies—Indian or British, and is still considered an attractive career path for Nepalis.  Lahures lived a comfortable life due to their lucrative earnings. Their family dynamics, economic status and social prestige stood out in society. Even today, many Nepali youths still want to get recruited in British and Indian army forces for a good life.

But Syadurey Tamang, a former Lahure, of Kharibot Sisne in Ajirkot Rural Municiaplity-2 of Gorkha district, has defied this Lahure notion. He has been living an isolated life in a cave for the past 40 years. He had served in Indian Army Force 60 years ago.

Now Tamang feeds on root vegetables and the food provided by villagers. He resides in a cave in a jungle near Hansapur Bhachhek Bazaar. When this scribe contacted him, Tamang had no clothes to cover his body. He sleeps in a sack and makes fire to warm himself. He had stored honey in a plastic bottle but no food was found nearby.

Syadurey Tamang woke up suddenly upon seeing us. He was shivering with cold. He covered himself with a blanket and lit a cigarette. His hands and toes looked rough. He tried to make a fire but to no avail. When we asked, he said, “This is my home. I have been living here for 40 years.”

Syadurey Tamang tries to set fire

Tamang said that he changes his cave in certain interval and visits villages when hungry. He eats silently when people provide him with food, but does not beg or steal the food, according to Tamang.

A local Bhimlal Tamang said that his children and wife left him 40 years ago. “Syadurey returned to village quitting his well-paid job. He suffered mental illness after returning to his village. Apparently due to lack of proper treatment, his family too deserted him. He started living in caves after becoming alone,” said Bhimlal.

Nobody knows how Syadurey lost his mind and became incapable to blend with the rest of the society.

Ajirkot Rural Municiaplity Chief Fadindra Dhital said: “There were chances of recovery if he had received timely treatment. But he has not seen hospital till date.”

Syadurey has not left the village for once in the past 60 years. His was born in a remote village. He said that he had come to Bhachhek to see people, vehicle and market place. No one made effort to return him to his home, it is learnt.

“He calls ‘Samdhi’ to all those he knows. He lives in caves and visits jungle as he pleases,” said Dhital. According to Dhital, Syadurey now behaves somewhat normal than in earlier years.

Syadurey used to craft various domestic utensils out of nigalo (forest twigs) and sell them to villagers to make his living earlier, locals said. Now he has stopped working. An Army barrack near the cave provides him food.

The region is mostly inhabited by Tamang community. Most of them are Lahureys. Those who could not make it to foreign army are working as farmers. They raise cattle in upper areas. Syadurey’s family too belonged to one such family. But now Syadurey has no family to live with and no dreams to live upon.

Published: 14-01-2018 13:43

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