Mugu

District Overview

Mugu lies in Karnali Zone in Province 6 of Nepal. Gamgadhi is the district headquarter. The district, with an area of 3,635 sq. km is divided into 24 VDCs. Mugu has 9,619 households with a total population of 55,286 (Male 28,025 & Female 27,261).[1]

The topography of the district consists of high mountains and as such road access is very limited. Gamgadhi is not linked to the national road network and is connected to the neighbouring districts by trails.

Economic and Financial Landscape

Agriculture (including livestock) and cottage industries are the main economic activities of the district. Although agriculture forms the major source of income in 97.12% of the households, food security remains a serious concern till date.[2] Among the small and cottage industries, majority work in the service sector followed by the productive sector.

The district is served by six different branches of ‘A’ Class Commercial Banks. The population served per branch is 10,185 against the national average of 8,960[3]. This indicates the need to further expand the outreach of financial services and facilities to the unbanked population of the area.

 GESI Issues

The population of Mugu comprises of about 48.87% Chhetri, 15.35% Thakuri, 9.47% Kami, 7.87% Tamang followed by smaller shares of other groups, in terms of caste/ethnicity.[4] Gender and caste based discrimination are persistent in Mugu. Women are discriminated in many different forms, one of them being ‘Chhaupadi’. Child marriage is also a common issue. About 72 percent of girls and women in Mugu are married in their adolescence.[5] Early marriage and gender based violence, often linked with alcoholism, are common sight in the district. A key focus of Sakchyam is to increase the access to financial services and facilities for the rural poor of the district and particularly for women and other DAGs.

Ongoing Sakchyam Interventions

Product Development

  • Launch of Weather Index Insurance (WII) and Livestock Insurance in partnership with Shikhar Insurance Company

Outreach Expansion

  • To increase financial access for rural poor, one branch of Rastriya Banijya Bank (RBB) one branch of NUBL and one branch of Shikhar Insurance Company have been established in the district.
  • Also, NUBL has extended financial services in the district through the distribution of 4 tablets.
  • RBB will establish one more branch in the district under the Local Units Project.

Financial Literacy Initiatives 

  • NUBL is conducting financial literacy campaign in the district through IVR messages. These messages are in local dialect.
[1] National Population Census 2011 [2] National Sample Census of Agriculture 2011-2012 [3] Nepal Rastra Bank (July 2018) [4] National Population Census 2011 [5] http://un.org.np/sites/default/files/mugu_district_profile.pdf