The Village of Bhanwar Kala

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Bhanwar Kala is not a primitive village nor a traditional one. There are no houses made of mud or straw roofs. As you’ve seen, the houses are rather modern in construction style.

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The men and boys mostly wear western style clothing, although you’ll see some wearing the kurta pajama.

On the other hand, the women and girls almost always wear the traditional salwar kameez. I was surprised to see Priya “dress up” in jeans and a T-shirt the day we went shopping in Sarkaghat.

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There is no “downtown” or central area in Bhanwar Kala. There are no shops, other than one government sponsored shop that sells food staples like large bags of rice, lentils, and produce. Bhanwar is merely a collection of houses on the hillsides. There are clusters of houses very close together, then large open spaces, then another cluster. There are perhaps 200 houses in the village. Despite its small size, it does have its own municipal government.

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The roads don’t go very close to very many of the Bhanwar village houses. Most of them have long, narrow, cemented paths from the house to the road. The path from the road to Prem’s house is 100 meters, he said. I think it’s more like twice that. It’s very steep in some places and winds past terraced fields used for planting crops.

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The nearest town is Dharampur, which is two kilometers away. Dharampur does have a central business district with shops. There is also a hospital. Most of the Bhanwar dwellers don’t have vehicles, so if they need to go to Dharampur, they either wait for the bus or walk.

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