Miao is a kind of “transit camp” for us. This is where we get basic necessities and carry them home to Shidi area. We get education for our children. And it functions as a station for us to receive medical care.
In 2011 a head count of our people was made by the YTWC leaders and found we had 140 adults to look after the 238 students (Published in Sentinel). All totaled to 378.
We made another census for the 2015-16. By then we have increased to 444 people including old and young. During that period five of our people died and buried in Miao. One was a student studying in Miao. Three people came for medical treatment but did not recover since they came to seek medical attention at the terminal stage. One woman died on her way from Shidi to Miao. Even this year several people are undergoing medical treatment.
Our boys and girls study in various schools in Miao. The highest numbers would be in Higher Secondary School, Light of the World, Town Middle School and Upper Middle School. Fewer students are in Primary School (New Singpho village), Little Tots School and Kendriya Vidyalaya.
I counted from the last year’s census for Class xi and xii. We had 16 girls and 9 boys for Eleven. I assume the number of students for class xii would not change much since admission to Class xii is rare. There were 30 students for class xii last year – 15 boys and 15 girls.
Our population here is very fluid meaning we keep moving on. Students leave on completing their course of studies. Patients go home once they are cured of their sickness. Villagers pick essential commodities and return to their villages. Less than 20 families with businesses/jobs are here on regular basis.
I wish this level of facilities available at Miao is possible to our people in Shidi area. That would allow our young to stay with parents. Patients can avail early detection of diseases. And also communicate better with the outside world. We are yet to see that day.