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UNDAF District Profile: Baitadi
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Baitadi covers a 1,519km area of the Mahakali zone in the Far Western Region (FWR). Baitadi district comprises 62 Village Development Committees (VDCs), 13 Ilakas, one municipality and two constituencies. Its District Headquarters (DHQ) is Khalanga, located in Dashrath Chand Municipality. The Dashrath Chand highway stretches 83km between Dadeldhura and Khalanga, while a 17km-long dirt road connects Khalanga to Jhulaghat on Nepal’s western border. An Airport located at Patan Village VDC, about 30km from DHQ, was destroyed during the armed conflict and its reconstruction has not yet begun. In 2011, the population of Baitadi numbered 250,898. The population of men aged 20-49 is noticeably smaller than that of women, due to migration patterns. During the decade-long armed conflict in Nepal, Baitadi suffered its share of losses. A total of 167 people were killed, three were disabled and four are missing from the district. In the 2008 Constituent Assembly (CA) election, a total of 19 candidates (eight in constituency number
one and 11 in constituency number two), from eight political parties, two independent candidates, contested the first-past-the-post (FPTP) run. In mid-May 2013, the total number of registered voters in the district reached 104,242. The District Administration Office (DAO) is responsible for overall administration and security-related issues in the district and also for the issuance of citizenship certificates. Baitadi also has a District Court, a District Attorney Office and a District Police Office with a Women’s Services Cell and extended field presence through 24 Police Posts. In 2012, a total of six cases were registered in the Baitadi District Police Office (DPO) related to gender
based violence. Women suffer from gender-based discrimination in education, in household chores and in nutrition, as well as differential social and cultural norms in Baitadi. In particular Dalit and Janjati women are doubly challenged, because caste based discrimination is widely practiced in Baitadi in almost all communities. Child marriage has long been practiced in Baitadi. Per the Children's Act 1992, the District Child Welfare Board (DCWB) is responsible for child rights promotion and protection in the district by receiving reports of children in need of care and protection. While over half of men (60%) were literate in Baitadi in 2001, less than half as many women could read
and write (26%).45 A decade later, 79% of men and 49% of women aged five and above in Baitadi can read and write. The main occupation for the majority of people in Baitadi (89% of men and 85% of women) was agriculture in 2001, and it continues to be the main source of household income. The trend of seasonal migration towards neighbouring India is very high. In 2011, 21,039 people were absent abroad from Baitadi, 17% of whom female. Baitadi district has only one hospital located at the DHQ and several subsidiary health care facilities. The most common health problems dealt with in the district are acute respiratory infections, scabies, diarrhoea, gastritis, abdominal pain and uterine prolapse. Baitadi is among the districts with very high prevalence of acute malnutrition in children under five. In addition, well over half (58%) of children under age five are stunted, and over a fifth (23%) of women of reproductive age are underweight. Though arable land in Baitadi totals 31,485ha, only around 82% of it (25,700ha) is currently cultivated. Although available edible food per capita has increased in the last two years, Baitadi still had a food deficit of 5,158mt in 2010/11, despite total production of 51,289mt. The District Water and Sanitation Office estimates that 71% of households have access to safe drinking water, and a household survey conducted in the area the same year found that 73% of households use an improved water source.

UNRCHCO ,   (2013 )
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