240 odd kilometers from Itanagar of Arunachal Pradesh, is Mirem, the second largest village of East Siang District after Riga Village. The village got its name after the amazing god-gifted water spring of the village. The word Mirem in Adi language means ‘rich’, and connotes to the large water spring. However, till now, this remote village was only spot on the state map, unbeknownst to the world.
It was only recently that the villagegained popularity, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his widely popular address to nation – Mann ki Baat –lauded the efforts made by the villagers in building shelters for the migrant workers returning from other parts of the country amid Covid-19 pandemic. The Prime Minister shared details of how locals and migrant workers have helped one another while being responsible towards protecting the environment.
“Every month, we come across stories that touch our heart. They remind us how every Indian is earnestly ready to help one another, to the best extent possible, according to one’s capacity,” shared Prime Minister Modi during the 66th edition of his monthly radio programme”.
“I got an opportunity to read one such inspiring story from Arunachal Pradesh. Mirem village of Siang district hasattained a unique feat, becoming an inspiration for all of us in India. The village has a large share of migrant workers who came home during the pandemic. Anticipating this way ahead, the residing villagers, instead of panicking and planning to ostracize them, joined hands to build quarantine facilities in the form of 14 temporary huts for the returnees who they knew were in distress,” the Prime Minister said.
“The shelters were equipped with toilets, water, electricity, and other essential items for daily needs. It is not surprising that this awareness and collective effort on the part of village folk of Mirem attracted widespread attention and accolades,” the Prime Minister enthused.
He also read ‘shloka’, which when translated in English reads as, “Just like camphor does not abandon its fragrance even while burning in fire, the virtuous ones do not forsake their qualities or their true nature while facing a disaster.”
Dr. Kinny Singh, IAS, Deputy Commissioner while expressing her happiness over this endeavor by the villagers said, “We are happy about it. War against Covid19 has to be foughtcollectively, as it concerns the entire humanity. Community participation here becomes highly imperative. The people of the district feel proud and honored that efforts of Mirem village have been acknowledged and appreciated by the Prime Minister in Mann ki Baat. It will motivate them to do better in future. We have received around 800 returnees and the Govt. of Arunachal Pradesh has adopted a well-planned policy of institutional quarantine for all of them.”
Elaborating more about the quarantine huts, Singh said, “In our district we have identified 20 such institutional quarantine facilities for the returnees to stay for a stipulated time following which they are discharged on testing negative. However, since the incubation period of this virus is not clear, thevillagers of Mirem decided to go for extra protection. Thus was born the concept of Quarantine huts! Oncereleased from institutional quarantine of State Govt. or district administration, the returnees were made to stay in the huts erected at the outskirts of the village.The news spread and 3-4 other villages soon started adopting the concept. With most villages having community toilets, these quarantine huts become all the more effective for the safety of the villagers and also for virus-control.
Kudos guys! You make us proud!