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In Vietnam, blind farmer inspires the sighted

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Ho Van Dung, a farmer in Kien Giang Province has been blind since the age of three. Despite his disability, Dung has a reputation for his incredible farming and eel-catching skills.

Dung’s incredible skill has grown to such proportions that people travel from across the province, located in the Mekong Delta region of Vietnam, to his home in Hamlet 9, Vinh Hoa Hung Bac Commune, Go Quao District, Kien Giang to find out whether he is truly blind.

The family breadwinner

According to Dung, he lost his sight at the age of three due to an unknown disease.

“My parents were very poor at the time and tried their best to treat my disease, but nothing they tried worked,” he divulged.

Despite his disability, Dung has spent his life excelling at skills normally reserved for the sighted, namely farming and eel-catching.

Catching eels in a rice field is no easy task, and according to Dung, “there are no secret tips.”

“As a blind man, I have my own way of setting the trap,” he said.

“I use the same tools as everyone else, but I seem to be more lucky.

“I never go home without eels.”

For Dung, the journey to catch the eels is more difficult than actually catching the slithery creature.

“I can’t see the way, and I often fall over in the field,” he said.

“Sometimes I cut my feet on nails, plants, and broken glass.”

He works in the fields every day, typically catching at least a kilogram of small eels that can then sell for VND80,000-120,000 (US$3.5-4.4) in order to support his family.  

Much of his success in farming and eel-catching is owed to his heightened senses of smell, hearing, taste, and touch, according to Dung.

In fact, his senses of hearing and touch are so sensitive that he can pinpoint the time simply from the sounds of birds chirping or the feel of sunlight on his skin.

“The birds often sing loudly in the morning and I know it’s about noon when the wind starts to blow a certain way,” Dung said.

Although he is blind, Ho Van Dung has been making a living for his family of five for about 40 years. Photo: Chi Cong / Tien Phong

Although he is blind, Ho Van Dung has been making a living for his family of five for about 40 years in Kien Giang Province, Vietnam. Photo: Chi Cong / Tien Phong

A supportive family

While Dung works the fields, Anh, the love of his life, prepares meals for their family.

“My wife is really good at cooking,” Dung proudly shared.

Anh, 40, is a strong, resourceful, sighted woman who met Dung in 2000. The two fell in love immediately.

“It seemed to be destiny for us. I fell in love with him the very first day we met,” she recounted.

Now, years later Dung still seems surprised to have found such an affectionate love.

“I thought I’d never find love because I am blind, but she loves me and became my wife,” Dung said.

“We live with many difficulties because we are poor, but we will always be together.  

“My life is simple but I am incredibly happy.”

Between catching eels, diving to collect soil, and spraying pesticides, the couple earn VND100,000-200,000 ($4.4-8.8) a day. They also raise pigs.

“I am illiterate but my children should not be,” Dung said.

“My two oldest children dropped out of school to become workers because they didn’t want my wife and I to have to work so hard. 

“Now I am determined to give my youngest daughter the best chance to learn.”

Tran Van Trieu, Dung’s neighbor, praised him for his cleverness and professional skills.

Trieu said that many people want to hire Dung to work on their farms because of his thoroughness and attention to detail.

“He knows exactly whether there are eels in this area or not,” Trieu said.

“I admire him a lot.

“He is capable of anything, just like anyone else.

“I am not blind but I cannot catch eels as well as he can.

“He seems to have such a happy family.”

The eels are caught by blind man Ho Van Dung. Photo: Chi Cong / Tien Phong

The eels are caught by blind man Ho Van Dung. Photo: Chi Cong / Tien Phong

Enjoying music after work

Dung has a fondness for traditional music.

He can play the guitar and sing both folk songs and ‘cai luong,’ traditional type of music from southern Vietnam. Many people enjoy listening to him during their breaks from work.

Dung learned to play the guitar all by himself by listening to others and practices it every day .

He used to make a living by playing music at weddings for a fee of VND200,000-500,000 ($8.8-22).  Now he only plays the guitar as a hobby after work.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20220220/in-vietnam-blind-farmer-inspires-the-sighted/65791.html

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Vietnam’s Da Lat City overcrowded with vehicles of Tet goers

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All major streets in Vietnam’s tourist highland city of Da Lat were packed with vehicles on Thursday, the last day of the seven-day Tet break (2023 Lunar New Year) as so many personal cars and passenger vans traveled to the city.

The traffic jams were serious as so many vehicles entered the city center even though the number of visitors during this Tet was not too big compared to last year’s edition, as noted by Tien Phong (Youth) newspaper reporters.

Tran Manh Son, a visitor from Ho Chi Minh City, told Tien Phong that it took him nearly an hour to drive his family in his car for a distance of about three kilometers from a hotel on Trieu Viet Vuong Street to Tran Hung Dao Street.

“Cars and larger vehicles were overloaded everywhere, so many cars inched a bit, as slow as walking,” Son said.   

The area of Xuan Huong Lake was constantly congested from 8:30 am to 11:00 am, and the same situation was recorded in many other sites, including the city’s flower garden, the Ong Dao Bridge, the Da Lat market roundabout, and the intersection of Dinh Tien Hoang, Tran Quoc Toan, and Bui Thi Xuan Streets.

Police officers were deployed on many streets to regulate traffic and guide vehicles to change their directions to avoid entering the ways leading to traffic jam sites.

Vinh, the driver of a 50-seater long-haul bus, said he picked up passengers on Hoang Van Thu Street but could not drive them to Domaine Church on Ngo Quyen Street because of the serious congestion that had lasted for more than an hour.

He added his passengers wanted to change their destination to avoid the jam but he failed to turn the bus to any other directions to get out of the congested site.

“Now I can do nothing but wait for the congestion to ease,” Vinh said.

Nguyen Hung Minh, a long-haul bus driver, said he drove passengers to Da Lat on Tuesday and has since witnessed such traffic jams at the city’s gateways.

The Da Lat administration blamed the serious congestion on personal cars and long-haul buses that had come to this tourist destination, which is the capital city of Lam Dong Province in the Central Highlands region. 

Such traffic jams have partly affected the quality of tours to Da Lat, local authorities said.

A traffic police officer is seen asking a car driver to change his direction to avoid entering the ongoing congestion site in Da Lat. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

A traffic police officer is seen asking a car driver to change his direction to avoid entering the ongoing congestion site in Da Lat. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

This image shows many personal cars and long-haul buses in a traffic jam in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

This image shows many personal cars and long-haul buses in a traffic jam in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

Many young people are seen still joyful despite being stuck in traffic congestion on a street in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

Many young people are seen still joyful despite being stuck in traffic congestion on a street in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

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All major streets in Vietnam’s tourist highland city of Da Lat were packed with vehicles on Thursday, the last day of the seven-day Tet break (2023 Lunar New Year) as so many personal cars and passenger vans traveled to the city.

The traffic jams were serious as so many vehicles entered the city center even though the number of visitors during this Tet was not too big compared to last year’s edition, as noted by Tien Phong (Youth) newspaper reporters.

Tran Manh Son, a visitor from Ho Chi Minh City, told Tien Phong that it took him nearly an hour to drive his family in his car for a distance of about three kilometers from a hotel on Trieu Viet Vuong Street to Tran Hung Dao Street.

“Cars and larger vehicles were overloaded everywhere, so many cars inched a bit, as slow as walking,” Son said.   

The area of Xuan Huong Lake was constantly congested from 8:30 am to 11:00 am, and the same situation was recorded in many other sites, including the city’s flower garden, the Ong Dao Bridge, the Da Lat market roundabout, and the intersection of Dinh Tien Hoang, Tran Quoc Toan, and Bui Thi Xuan Streets.

Police officers were deployed on many streets to regulate traffic and guide vehicles to change their directions to avoid entering the ways leading to traffic jam sites.

Vinh, the driver of a 50-seater long-haul bus, said he picked up passengers on Hoang Van Thu Street but could not drive them to Domaine Church on Ngo Quyen Street because of the serious congestion that had lasted for more than an hour.

He added his passengers wanted to change their destination to avoid the jam but he failed to turn the bus to any other directions to get out of the congested site.

“Now I can do nothing but wait for the congestion to ease,” Vinh said.

Nguyen Hung Minh, a long-haul bus driver, said he drove passengers to Da Lat on Tuesday and has since witnessed such traffic jams at the city’s gateways.

The Da Lat administration blamed the serious congestion on personal cars and long-haul buses that had come to this tourist destination, which is the capital city of Lam Dong Province in the Central Highlands region. 

Such traffic jams have partly affected the quality of tours to Da Lat, local authorities said.

A traffic police officer is seen asking a car driver to change his direction to avoid entering the ongoing congestion site in Da Lat. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

A traffic police officer is seen asking a car driver to change his direction to avoid entering the ongoing congestion site in Da Lat. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

This image shows many personal cars and long-haul buses in a traffic jam in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

This image shows many personal cars and long-haul buses in a traffic jam in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

Many young people are seen still joyful despite being stuck in traffic congestion on a street in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

Many young people are seen still joyful despite being stuck in traffic congestion on a street in Da Lat City on January 26, 2023. Photo: Mai Vinh / Tien Phong

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230127/vietnams-da-lat-city-overcrowded-with-vehicles-of-tet-goers/71148.html

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Nha Trang – Saigon railway upgrade project launched

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A project to upgrade and renovate the railway route that connects Vietnam’s south-central coastal city of Nha Trang and its southern economic hub Ho Chi Minh City kicked off on Thursday, the last day of the seven-day Tet break (2023 Lunar New Year).

The launching ceremony for the project took place at the Thap Cham railway station in south-central Ninh Thuan Province with the attendance of Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and many other high-ranking central and local officials, the Vietnam News Agency reported.

The Nha Trang – Saigon railway route is 411 kilometers long, starting from Nha Trang in Khanh Hoa Province and ending in Ho Chi Minh City after running through Ninh Thuan, Binh Thuan, Dong Nai, and Binh Duong Provinces.

The project, expected to be complete in 2025, is estimated to cost VND1,099 billion (US$46.7 million) from the medium-term budget capital source for 2021-25, according to the project management board.

It is aimed at improving the quality and size of the railway infrastructure, thereby increasing transport capacity, enhancing traffic safety, and facilitating the transport of passengers and cargo on the route that links six localities. 

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (L) is seen shaking hands with railway engineers and workers at the Thap Cham railway station in Ninh Thuan Province, south-central Vietnam on January 26, 2023. Photo: Vietnam News Agency

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (L) is seen shaking hands with railway engineers and workers at the Thap Cham railway station in Ninh Thuan Province, south-central Vietnam on January 26, 2023. Photo: Vietnam News Agency

Under the project, all weak bridges on the route will be repaired and upgraded, the railway infrastructure will be renovated and modernized, and some terminals of passenger and goods will be reformed or consolidated, among other components including new constructions.

Addressing the ceremony, PM Chinh asked the Ministry of Transport to direct all the contractors, consultants, and supervisors to mobilize all possible resources and take necessary steps to ensure the project will be implemented efficiently, safely, and on schedule.

In addition, the project must comply with requirements on environmental protection during its implementation, the government leader said.

He asked all the ministries, agencies, and local authorities involved in the project to cooperate with each other effectively to make it a success.

Investment in public transport infrastructure in general and railway systems in particular is not only the duty of the transport ministry, but also the leading political task of local authorities of all related provinces and cities, the PM emphasized.

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A project to upgrade and renovate the railway route that connects Vietnam’s south-central coastal city of Nha Trang and its southern economic hub Ho Chi Minh City kicked off on Thursday, the last day of the seven-day Tet break (2023 Lunar New Year).

The launching ceremony for the project took place at the Thap Cham railway station in south-central Ninh Thuan Province with the attendance of Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and many other high-ranking central and local officials, the Vietnam News Agency reported.

The Nha Trang – Saigon railway route is 411 kilometers long, starting from Nha Trang in Khanh Hoa Province and ending in Ho Chi Minh City after running through Ninh Thuan, Binh Thuan, Dong Nai, and Binh Duong Provinces.

The project, expected to be complete in 2025, is estimated to cost VND1,099 billion (US$46.7 million) from the medium-term budget capital source for 2021-25, according to the project management board.

It is aimed at improving the quality and size of the railway infrastructure, thereby increasing transport capacity, enhancing traffic safety, and facilitating the transport of passengers and cargo on the route that links six localities. 

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (L) is seen shaking hands with railway engineers and workers at the Thap Cham railway station in Ninh Thuan Province, south-central Vietnam on January 26, 2023. Photo: Vietnam News Agency

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (L) is seen shaking hands with railway engineers and workers at the Thap Cham railway station in Ninh Thuan Province, south-central Vietnam on January 26, 2023. Photo: Vietnam News Agency

Under the project, all weak bridges on the route will be repaired and upgraded, the railway infrastructure will be renovated and modernized, and some terminals of passenger and goods will be reformed or consolidated, among other components including new constructions.

Addressing the ceremony, PM Chinh asked the Ministry of Transport to direct all the contractors, consultants, and supervisors to mobilize all possible resources and take necessary steps to ensure the project will be implemented efficiently, safely, and on schedule.

In addition, the project must comply with requirements on environmental protection during its implementation, the government leader said.

He asked all the ministries, agencies, and local authorities involved in the project to cooperate with each other effectively to make it a success.

Investment in public transport infrastructure in general and railway systems in particular is not only the duty of the transport ministry, but also the leading political task of local authorities of all related provinces and cities, the PM emphasized.

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get the latest news about Vietnam!

Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230127/nha-trang-saigon-railway-upgrade-project-launched/71145.html

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152 traffic accidents kill 89 throughout Vietnam during Tet

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Eighty-nine people were killed and 111 others were injured in 152 crashes across Vietnam during the seven-day 2023 Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday starting January 20, the National Traffic Safety Committee reported on Thursday, citing the Ministry of Public Security.

Compared to the same period of last year’s Tet, the numbers of crashes and fatalities declined by 12 and three, respectively, while the injuries rose by eight.

Among the total traffic accidents, 147 cases happened on roads, four occurred on rails, and one in waterway traffic. 

Nineteen accidents occurred on Thursday, the last day of the Tet break and the fifth day of the Lunar New Year, killing 12 people and injuring 15 others.

During the week-long holiday, traffic police officers handled 21,990 cases of road traffic violations, imposed fines totaling some VND50.4 billion (US$2.15 million) on the violators, impounded 639 cars, 9,910 motorbikes and 50 other vehicles, and revoked 4,950 driver’s licenses.

Among the traffic violators were 7,726 drivers under the influence of alcohol, 2,211 overspeeding, and 17 abusing drugs.

Medical facilities across the country received 26,411 cases requiring medical examination and mergency treatment due to traffic accidents from 7:00 am on January 20 to 7:00 am on Thursday.

This figure does not exclude duplicate data in cases of one person visiting multiple hospitals, according to the National Traffic Safety Committee.

The traffic safety agency said that the waves of people coming back to big cities such as Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City for work after Tet increased remarkably on Thursday.

However, there was no serious traffic congestion at gateways to the metropolitan areas but some local traffic jams such as bottlenecks on the Hanoi-Hai Phong and Phap Van-Cau Gie Expressways in Hanoi and the gridlock on the Rach Mieu Bridge, which lies along a major route connecting Ho Chi Minh City and provinces in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta.

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Eighty-nine people were killed and 111 others were injured in 152 crashes across Vietnam during the seven-day 2023 Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday starting January 20, the National Traffic Safety Committee reported on Thursday, citing the Ministry of Public Security.

Compared to the same period of last year’s Tet, the numbers of crashes and fatalities declined by 12 and three, respectively, while the injuries rose by eight.

Among the total traffic accidents, 147 cases happened on roads, four occurred on rails, and one in waterway traffic. 

Nineteen accidents occurred on Thursday, the last day of the Tet break and the fifth day of the Lunar New Year, killing 12 people and injuring 15 others.

During the week-long holiday, traffic police officers handled 21,990 cases of road traffic violations, imposed fines totaling some VND50.4 billion (US$2.15 million) on the violators, impounded 639 cars, 9,910 motorbikes and 50 other vehicles, and revoked 4,950 driver’s licenses.

Among the traffic violators were 7,726 drivers under the influence of alcohol, 2,211 overspeeding, and 17 abusing drugs.

Medical facilities across the country received 26,411 cases requiring medical examination and mergency treatment due to traffic accidents from 7:00 am on January 20 to 7:00 am on Thursday.

This figure does not exclude duplicate data in cases of one person visiting multiple hospitals, according to the National Traffic Safety Committee.

The traffic safety agency said that the waves of people coming back to big cities such as Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City for work after Tet increased remarkably on Thursday.

However, there was no serious traffic congestion at gateways to the metropolitan areas but some local traffic jams such as bottlenecks on the Hanoi-Hai Phong and Phap Van-Cau Gie Expressways in Hanoi and the gridlock on the Rach Mieu Bridge, which lies along a major route connecting Ho Chi Minh City and provinces in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta.

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get the latest news about Vietnam!

Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230127/152-traffic-accidents-kill-89-throughout-vietnam-during-tet/71144.html

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