Introduction / History It is difficult to live and survive there as there are many problems: communication, sanitation, proper health care, absence and unavailability of machinery, increasing scarcity of land suitable for cultivation, deforestation, access to alternative fuel for cooking. More than 80% of the Nepali people depend on traditional farming and keeping of a minimum of livestock in the hilly regions of the country. For time immemorial, the Khaling people have been living in the valley of the DudhKosi in the villages of Basa, Kaku, Waku, Pawai, Jubing and Taksindo VDC.
Their ancestors used to go to the Namche Bazaar, the entry for the great expeditions in the Himalayan Mountains to barter grain for salt from Tibet. They also went to Darjeeling and Sikkim to earn money and see a foreign country while working in the tea gardens, as carriers of oranges or in road building and cutting of timber. Others enlisted in the Gurkha regiments of the British and Indian Armies. With the money they earned, they usually bought clothes and jewelry for their families. In this way, they could augment their meager income from farming.
Where are they located? The Khaling Rai people settle on both sides of the DudhKosi, a river that comes from a glacier at the foot of Mt. Everest which in Nepal is called Sagarmatha. Nepal is a landlocked country between China and India. There are lower hills in the south and the Himalaya range in the north. Viewing the natural beautiful mountain flora and fauna touches our hearts deeply beyond measure. On the other hand, this area is remote and difficult to pass.
What are their lives like? More recently, since the introduction of democracy in 1989, many Khaling moved to Kathmandu to find a job or to study. Many also go to the Middle East or to Malaysia to work as laborers. The traditional way of farming and keeping of livestock is not efficient but people are not open to experiment and innovate. But migrating to the cities or abroad will not solve the problem of poverty of those remaining in the villages. But people doing agriculture and living in villages are still needed. It is true; life in the villages is still backward in many ways. Only recently, people have seen the value of proper latrines for their health.
What are their needs? Because of continued cutting of trees, the hillsides have become bare and landslides during the monsoon rains are common and destructive. Transportation is also a problem. Recently, with use of bulldozers, roads have been carved out of the hillsides. But many of these new roads lack proper planning and engineering so that they are easily washed away during the monsoon. Therefore, many of these roads do more damage than they provide accessibility to the remote areas.