People affected by leprosy cleared from makeshift camp


Taunggyi, Shan State. Photo: Sithu Aung/Mizzima

Taunggyi City Development Committee and Sanitation Team has reportedly driven out a makeshift community of people who had been living in tents and shacks in the forest near the rail tracks east of Sulamuni Pagoda in Taunggyi.

The community of 37 people including those living with leprosy and adults and children free from the disease were sent back to their native village near Loilam town.

A number of these people had been making a living by begging at the roadside of east ring road of the town near Sulamuni pagoda and also in the city.

Coincidently, the community was the focus of a photography project that won first prize at the Shan State Photo Festival on December 22-23. 

On December 29, the community was called on to leave.

Taunggyi City Development Committee Executive Officer Aye Ko told local reporters that the people were not from the township. He claimed they agreed to move from the tents when told to leave and the authorities arranged vehicles for them.

As documented, the people had been making a living by begging. They reportedly left the area calmly without protest.

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