Yubraj Acharya, Alok Bohra And Other Idiot Bahuns


Kiran Sitoula Is A Short, Fat Idiot

Bahuns like Yubraj Acharya and Alok Bohara are proof education is not the cure to social injustice. The more educated these Bahuns become, the more articulate they become in their prejudices. It is in their genes. You can't convince them, so you go defeat them.

SEBS NA is a Bahun/Khas/Pahadi monster of an organization that Kiran Sitaula launched, and so I stay away from it. Meet me on MySpace. But my attention has been drawn to this particular thread at the SEBS Forum that is filled with anti-Madhesi venom, and at least one personal attack directed towards, so I ventured to look it up.

"a New Nepal will not come by dividing the country along the lines of ethnicity, colour or creed"

If you believe in both democracy and federalism, you are just going to have to let the people decide on the shape of that federalism. You are but one vote. There is an enormous support for the idea of a Madhesh state. There is no stopping a Madhesh state.

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Ethnically-clustered administrative entities are not a practical way to address the enormous socio-economic imbalances in a diverse population that has 100 ethnic groups and 80 languages"

Federalism goes beyond states. There is the central government, the state, the districts, the village/town/city governments. Between those four layers, your concerns will be put to rest. Federalism is the one person, one vote idea extrapolated.

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Imagine the Limbuwan province bypassing the tarai to sell hydropower to India region and keeping all the proceeds, or other pahadi regions seeing no incentive in preventing flooding to their south. Or the tarai keeping for itself all the profits from employment, tax receipts, and custom revenue from the industrial parks along its border."

This is a bogus argument. My proposal is here:
Constitution| Mantra Read it and then let's talk specifics. First you are opposed to the very idea of federalism. Then you don't want the people to decide on the shape of the map. Third, you want to mess up the power distribution arrangements as much as possible so the federalism is in name only. That ain't flying.

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This discussion does not even touch upon the millions of dalits and low-income indigenous people, and an ethnic division says nothing about what happens to women."

Trust a Bahun to look after the Dalit, the Janajati, the Mahila, groups that have been exploited for hundreds, thousands of years by the Madhesi! Is that your argument? You exploit the Madhesi like you exploit them. You are NOT on their side. Stop pretending.

"Our guiding principles should be sound policy prescriptions, concern for genuine grievances, strong, transparent and fair institutional mechanisms, and long-term pragmatism."

As if these sound principles and the principle of federalism clash.

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Alok Bohra's article is the last attempt by upper cast Nepali speaking men to maintain power to govern Nepal in their hands."

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The Ranas and Shah dynasty justified their autocratic rule saying that Nepal was poor, Nepalese were illeterate and therefore raising the economic status of people should be the main agenda and democracy can be sidelined. Alok Bohra's and Mani Nepal's article have the same flavor."

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Internal democracy with Congress and UML would not have been possible unless Gyanendra's rule ended. When Gyanendra was in Power, the main concern was how to get rid of his regime, not to have democracy within political parties."

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Upper cast Nepali speaking men will loose control of power in Nepal because they are a minority. Its time they realize and be gracious about giving up power and accepting true democracy."

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what destiny can the people of Humla, Jumla, and Rolpa chart when all they have are rugged mountains?"

You make it sound like the Kirat, the Tamang, the Newars, the Magars, the Gurungs are scared they might end up with states that does not include the Terai! Ask them. They don't want the Terai to be part of their states. Their problem has been Kathmandu, not the Madhesh.

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What assures that the powerful Tarai state created based on your vision will not be as indifferent to the plight of the rest of the country as the current Pahadi-dominated administration?"

Constitution| Mantra

The power distribution I have suggested between the center and the states will make sure no such anomaly happens.

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I might be unaware, but how is India and Canada divided in ethnic lines?"

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Madras province was divided into TamilNadu, Andhra Pradesh. Mysor was divided into Kerela and Karnatak. Bombay province was divided into Maharastra and Gujarat. Panjab into Panjab, Haryana and Himachal and Assam into Assam, Nagaland, manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya and Tripura. Recently from Bihar, Bihar and Jharkhand were created. Uttarkhand broke away from Uttar Pradesh. Chhattisdadh from Madhya Pradesh."

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these ethnic boundaries have not supported Indian integrity. Most of the states in Northeast region (Assam, Meghalaya, Mezoram,Tripura, Nagaland and manipur) do not want to be within Indian Union."

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A strong central govt with mighty military is the key reason why India has not disintegrated."

Indian federalism is not my model. The center has too much power in India. The center can dismiss the state government. We don't want that. We want more like what is in America, a federalism where duly elected state governments complete their full terms. India has much work to do to forge a more perfect union. Also the village/town/city governments in India do not have enough power. We don't want to repeat that mistake.

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Is it justifiable to make Khas state in Nepal which covers more than 50% of land?"

Khas are 20% not 50% of Nepal. Dalits are not Khas. You have never counted them as one of you. You don't get to start now.

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In my opinion, let all the states to be formed having Himal, Pahad and Tarai. Give more power to district govt to decide what that district needs."

That is your opinion. And you have every right to try to sell that to a free people who will make their own decision at the ballot box. But my reading of the situation is only ethnic federalism will carry the day, democratically speaking. Let's compete.

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The patronizing attitue of Bohra is quite offensive. Lets ask the Karnali people if they would like to have their own state, or mix up with Dhangadi and Nepalgunj."

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that decision should be teh result of negotiation between the central government in kathmandu and the regional government of Madhesh"

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The issue of political and economic power that you describe can easily be discussed in the constituent assembly. And to get there, all you need is a fair share of representation from Tarai during those elections, which the government has already promised. Therefore, shouldn't this movement stop so that the elections to the constituent assembly can be held on time? What is this ongoing agitation for?"

This ongoing agitation is to make sure the constituent assembly is not a repeat of the parliament of the 1990s but is rather one that "looks" like Nepal in its ethnic and gender composition. The Madhesi Janajati Movement is for a genuine constituent assembly where each Nepali is worth one vote, not a fake Khas constituent assembly.

What do you think of this?
Further Compromise: Mixed Election With Reservations

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Girija and Prachanda and Madhav Nepal and Deuba .... All of them are Pahadi bahun, and have a track record for trivilaizing the Madhesis grivenaces."

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Girjia needed death more than 40 people Madhesi and critical injury of more than 50 people to apologize. And the home minister hasn't resigned yet? I mean how do expect Madhesis to trust such government."

Girija is a Bahun. That is all there is to it. The guy is a sadist. He is dumb. He is sick, old and dying. He can't perform. He personifies all that is wrong with the Khas establishment.

Girija Bahun Baje Dumbass

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Why hasn't 49% seats been allocated to the Terai yet?"

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we can't even have faith in main stream media, and our human right expert..... I see no end to respect of Madhesis, unless Madhesis are granted a separate state."

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If the home minister resigns, and 49% seats are actually allocated to the Terai, this revolution will stop. But this government has no intentions of sitting down for talks. They do not want to give legitimacy to MRPF."

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why do Madhesi want 49% of the seats?"

It is called one person, one vote. That is what democracy is.

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the only outcome I see is disintegration of Nepal"

You equate federalism with disintegration. That is your Khas prejudice talking.

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trying to pull of a Mahendra style intergration ( with really strong central government)"

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I agree with Anand dai that Tarai grievances have been trivialized, both by the government and the media"

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home minister’s resignation, this is a man who brought the Maoists to the table and was instrumental in convincing them to come to the mainstream politics. Obviously we do not want to be so reliant on one person, but if this person resigns and goes out of the game, I am afraid the whole peace process might be aborted"

The Home Minister is not responsible for peace with the Maoists. His primary responsibility has been that he has appeased the Maoists. The Maoists have killed people. They carry guns. They extort at abandon. They bulley the other parties. They disrupt the mass meetings of the other parties. They beat up their opponents. That is what Hitler's brown shirts did in the runup to the elections that brought Hitler into power. Sitaula is more like Chamberlain. Sitaula is an appeaser. He lacks spine. He can't fight for his own party cadres. How can one expect him to fight for the Madhesis?

There are two strong arguments why Krishna Sitaula has to go. One, he unleashed a kind of state terror on the Madhesi Movement that made Kamal Thapa look like a nice guy. Two, he has appeased the Maoists and is about to hand them over the state apparatus.

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isn’t asking people to resign on moral grounds a little strange? Isn’t resignation on moral grounds supposed to come from the person himself/herself (by definition)?"

He has to be sacked. Forget resigning.

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If you are like one of those people who believe Nepal will be “swallowed” by India or a third country, don’t you think we are being too paranoid?"

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he has failed terribly has a home minister. Have you seen the Nepalgunj video? Have you yet heard or read anywhere that the policemen involved in that blatant terror against Madhesis have been suspended?"

"he has to be taken to court for using excessive force again people fighting for their rights. Isn't Kamal Thapa in court because of excessive force during April reovoultion? Impunity against crime has to end, be it by the home minister or a dacoit."

The Maoist who killed the 16 year old Mahato in Lahan. Why was he carrying a gun? All Maoists guns should have been with the UN by then. If he did kill, he is a murderer. Murderers do not get to apologize. They get sentenced. Today it was that Mahato, tomorrow it could be you up in the hills, and it will be you. Speak now, or you will have noone to speak for you when it might be your turn.

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It's a shame that he is still the home minister and greater shame that he is being protected."

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you see policemen supporting Pahadi rioters who are destroying shops owned by Madhesis. Whoever is giving orders to shoot should be brought to court just like Kamal Thapa and Tanka Dhakal."

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Would you agree with me that their blatant use of force has more -- if not just as much -- to do with their homegrown misconception that Taraibasis are second class citizens -- an attitude that would take years of modern, liberal education to change -- than with orders from the government to supress the movement by force?"

If education were some kind of a cure to prejudice, how come that formula did not work for you? The Home Minister is the top dog at the Home Ministry. He has to take responsibility. He has the option to fire people who disobey. He has the option to fire people who use illegal force. You can not legally fire above the waist in the name of crowd control. Most deaths were to people who were shot in their heads and chests. And hence the call for a probe commission.

I feel sorry for the largest political party in Nepal that it is saying it has only one person in that party capable of becoming Home Minister. Actually that is not what they are saying. They are saying Madhesi lives don't martyr. When a Pahadi dies fighting for democracy, he is a martyr. Madhesis fighting for social justice don't count. Flies die. Flies don't count.

"given the lack of international attention to this issue, it will take **many** deaths before Madhesis can have their demands met?"

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Kathmandu is literally turning a deaf ear to these protests, with major human right and civil society groups protesting for a much trivial cause--to punish the King!"

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Educated Nepali speaking people I have met far more racist than the uneducated Nepali people I have met."

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If a Yadav become the Prime Minister of Nepal, the Rana and Shahs need to take his orders and show respect towards him."

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You will suddenly see how a culture that has been ridiculed by the ruling elite of Kathmandu, starting to glorifying it."

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our generation will go down in history as promoting a failed state."

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There are millions of people in Madesh with pahadi origion."

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Maithali with 12.1%, Bhojpuri with 7.4% and Awadhi with 2.4% make 22% of Nepals population ie appx. 44% of Terai population. "

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If whole Madesh wanted 49% of seats in parliament, why we don't see any terai resident of pahadi origion in the strike."

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Stop calling PAHADI BAHUNS and crap and call someone by their caste ... Its same like saying Madise or Marsya"

Khas, Madhesi, Janajati, Dalit, Mahila. Which is you? Madisey/marsya is like saying Pakhe not Bahun. Pahadi/Madhesi, that is the basic dynamic.

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Do you really want Krishna Prasad Sitaula's resignation because of his failure to control the situation or simply because he happens to be what you call a pahade bahun?"

What do you think? Take your guess. 40 deaths, and you are still asking?

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I think Pahadi prejudice against Madhesis is very deeply held even by ordinary Pahadi folks."

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except Jhapa, Morang, Sunsari and Chitwan ( where populations are predominantly pahadi), all the tarai districts have high incidences of poverty"

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Districts where the madhesi population is concentrated is much poorer than the hills to the north"

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Madhesis are a distinct ethnic group. Yadav is a caste, not an ethnic group."

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the modality of resource sharing can be well defined in the constitution itself. Fear psychosis among few should not stop the demand for ethnic states once we all admit that there has been ethnic discrmination in past"

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The April andolan proved that well-organized demonstrations on the street can bring down a regime."

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My communication with a small number of my friends from Tarai. They don’t see these strikes in Tarai having a mass appeal."

Oh, so you have "black friends."

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it will be stupid of the MPRF to continue their protests on the only ground that Sitaula has not resigned."

If Sitaula does not resign, there will be no constituent assembly elections.

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you might as well ask for the Health Minister’s resignation every time someone in Karnali dies of diarrhea."

You cruel, insensitive, bigoted mofo. How could you possibly compare the two?

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many Nepalis, including Madhesis, will see a threat coming to the peace process from the Madhesi movement"

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a bigger threat to the peace process (for Madhesis as well as for the rest) comes from the Maoists with whom Sitaula continues to deal successfully."

See above.

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how many things do you expect the government to deal at a time?"

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A median citizen would like to know answers to such questions before joining the Madhesi cause."

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These protests increasingly appear to be motivated by the struggle for the power of a few Madhesis and perhaps directed by the hardcore monarchists from behind the stage."

माघे क्रान्ित, राजावादी र िहन्दु कट्टरपन्थीबारे

What makes you think we Madhesis ever wanted a Pahadi Raja? It is your fellow Bahun Girija that talks of a ceremonial monarchy.

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the Madhesis in the parliament threatened to leave the legislature if the government was not serious about the Terai cause. That attitude is soooooo Maoist-like: you don’t try to change things from within and when gold does not fall from the sky on your plate (what would?!), you threaten to protest."

Upendra Yadav offends you. The Madhesi MPs offend you. Let me guess, you are a Pahadi Bahun.

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VDCs are divided based on population"

No, they are not. VDCs in the Pahad have many fewer people.

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where are our Madhesi activities and unemployed ex-truck drivers when initiators of such initiatives succumbed to lack of support from other parties—heck, even the Nepal Sadbhawana Party helped bring the UML government down!"

I moved to NYC summer of 2005 to work on my business idea but got sucked into working full time for the democracy movement in Nepal, the only Nepali outside of Nepal to do so. Ends up best work I ever did.

My Role In The April Revolution: The Butterfly Effect

You are going to be slaving away your lifetime working for other people's corporations. You don't "get" entrepreneurship, the political/social kind that I have been doing for the past two years that will earn me honorary doctorates in a few years, or the business kind that I am about to get into, aur tum dekhte hi rah jaoge. Just curious, what is your net worth? You don't look rich to me.

http://bhagatversion.blogspot.com

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Before someone complains saying I don't know the name of the leader of MPRF, here's a clarification: I meant Upendra Yadav, not Matrika Yadav."

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What it needs is getting rid of certain prejudice. No education, no degress, no seeing the world can get rid for that."

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how are we going to bring the changes? Follow Big bang approach or the gradual change? "

These are revolutionary times.

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It is ridiculous to say that madhesi issue is the most pressing issue when we had 13000+ people dead with the maoist issue."

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And, Yadav wants to be appointed as home-minister after forcing Sitaula to resign, right? Holy cow"

Total lie.

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There were a couple of madhesi leaders in the parliament before and some even managed to grab some ministerial portfolios."

Madhesi hum lenge sau mein pachas. There were/are a few Madhesi students also at BNKS, but that doesn't mean s___t.

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Before you say they were underrepresented in parliament, let me tell you, there is a lot a minister or even a parliamentarian can do at his own discretion."

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The government offered for talks and these stupid bunch of people want the resignation to be the first priority. What a shame!!! Are we against a person or the system out here?"

40 deaths. 1000s injured.

21 deaths in April 2006 brought down a regime.

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Situala has to resign as a home minister because under his leadership police used excessive force and sided openly with the Pahadis. The demand that MRPF leaders will not sit for talks until Situala resigns, is just."

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His not resigning from Home Ministry is putting CA elections into threat."

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Any who supports Situala as remaining in power I think privately believes that what Madhesis are being nusiance is distrubing the CA election, and what Situala did was good."

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So, nepal will gain more in the resignation of Krishna Prasad Sitaula, than in the successful conduct of Election to CA?"

Sitaula's resignation will make possible the CA elections. Forget the Madhesi Movement and the Madhesi martyrs. If you are for CA elections, join the chorus for Sitaula's resignation.

"
It should already have been clear that the ellection to CA will be able to solve both the maiost problems as well as the problems faced by various ethnic communities including that of Madhesis. Isnt this in the best interest of all of us( Himalis, Pahadis, Madhesis)?"

So let's go for this: Further Compromise: Mixed Election With Reservations

Further Compromise: Mixed Election With Reservations
5 Point Demand: Compromise Formula So Elections Can Be Held In June
MJF And NEFIN Must Become Political Parties
The Economist: Nepal's Ethnic Politics: The New Battlefront
Brikhesh Chandra Lal: Suspicion Emanating From The Message
Should The MJF Indefinite Strike Continue? Yes
Girija Bahun Baje Dumbass
Madhesi Janajati Kranti: Victory Scenarios
Ensuring Ethnic And Gender Representation In The Constituent Assembly
Madhesi Janajati Kranti: Confusion, Clarity
Madhesi Janajati Kranti: A Few Scenarios

Topic: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Original Post
Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
onta 3/7/2007 9:52:24 AM EST
Equal opportunity poverty
Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
ALOK BOHARA and MANI NEPAL

From Issue #338 (02 March 07 - 08 March 07) | TABLE OF CONTENTS
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SUBSCRIBE NT PRINT REFER WRITE TO EDITOR

Nepal’s enormous geographic, ethnic, and biological diversity throws up many opportunities for economic development, such as through hydropower, tourism, agriculture, and the like. Yet most Nepalis today remain as poor as they have been for centuries. Look at the poverty figures and you realise that a New Nepal will not come by dividing the country along the lines of ethnicity, colour or creed, but by addressing this basic inequity.
Our rugged geography and the fact that we are landlocked, our feudal practices, and Kathamandu-centric politics and policies all contribute to our misery. While it is true that Nepalis of madhesi origin have been on the receiving end of much social and economic injustice, so have many other groups not from the tarai. Of the 25 poorest districts, 16 are in the hills and the mountains and two in the eastern tarai.

Poverty mapping by using the headcount (percent of people below the poverty line) as a measure of poverty status shows that deprivation is pervasive, from east to west and includes both the ‘madhesis' tarai’ and ‘pahades' hills’. The districts in the mid-west and the far-west spanning all ecological belts have the most people under poverty. Even the relatively prosperous eastern and central regions have pockets of poor districts in the hill and tarai regions.

Rural Nepal accounts for 83 percent of the total population—some 19 million people. Of these, 35 percent, or seven million fall below the poverty line. The figures for per capita consumption expenditure make more sense if you also look at the disparity within each group in the bar graphs for poverty rate by ethnicity. Millions are poor and deprived regardless of their ethnicity.

In absolute terms, the vast majority of hill dalits, tharus, and lower caste madhesis (2.5 million in all) are under the poverty line. Pahade bahuns, chhetris, and janajatis each have more than a million poor. Madhesi Yadavs are doing poorly compared with madhesi bahuns.

Ethnically-clustered administrative entities are not a practical way to address the enormous socio-economic imbalances in a diverse population that has 100 ethnic groups and 80 languages. The proposed federal structure on the basis of the five pahad versus madhes regions also does not take into account comparative advantage, economy of scale, carrying capacity, or the diversity of resources. As an example, what destiny can the people of Humla, Jumla, and Rolpa chart when all they have are rugged mountains? The lumping together of, say, Rai and Magar, dalits and Sherpa, Bahun and the Chhetri would only exacerbate ethnic tensions further and prompt migration down to the plains, should hardship in the hills continue. Will the new state solve such problems by creating a culture of centrally-controlled fiscal handouts?

With an all-too-imaginable weak central government in Kathmandu resourceful regions could refuse to share benefits with less-privileged areas. Imagine the Limbuwan province bypassing the tarai to sell hydropower to India region and keeping all the proceeds, or other pahadi regions seeing no incentive in preventing flooding to their south. Or the tarai keeping for itself all the profits from employment, tax receipts, and custom revenue from the industrial parks along its border. These are important questions because of the unique ecological interdependence between Nepal’s different regions. This discussion does not even touch upon the millions of dalits and low-income indigenous people, and an ethnic division says nothing about what happens to women.

Conflict masks conflict, and once the political issues are settled, the economic ones will again surface. What we should be designing now is a political solution that addresses economic realities. It’s time for taraibasis and hill people to look to each other’s regions and see how the potential in the bio-diversity, natural resources, water, hydropower, minerals, forest products, herbs, and cash crops of the north can complement the tarai’s agriculture, fisheries, and industrial activities. The ecological comparative advantage of the three belts, if harvested properly, can be a factor in solving the problems of all communities.

Each regional unit in such a north-south federated system could also be balanced in terms of ethnicity and population to create a more representative electoral system. Other institutional mechanisms to bolster such an arrangement include the division of tasks, mixed proportional representation system of election, a strong, responsive central government, internal democracy, stable governance, and rule of law. Our guiding principles should be sound policy prescriptions, concern for genuine grievances, strong, transparent and fair institutional mechanisms, and long-term pragmatism.

Alok Bohara is professor of economics at the University of New Mexico, and Mani Nepal is a doctoral student at the university.

ALL GRAPHS: Authors' computation from Nepal Living Standards Survey, 2004, and Population Census, 2001, Central Bureau of Statistics, Kathmandu.

PUBLISHED in NEPALI TIMES.
http://www.nepalitimes.com/issue/338/Nation/13285

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/7/2007 11:20:08 AM EST

Alok Bohra's article is the last attempt by upper cast Nepali speaking men to maintain power to govern Nepal in their hands. This article is full of loop holes:

The Ranas and Shah dynasty justified their autocratic rule saying that Nepal was poor, Nepalese were illeterate and therefore raising the economic status of people should be the main agenda and democracy can be sidelined. Alok Bohra's and Mani Nepal's article have the same flavor. Lets look at how many people are below the poverty line and discrimination within Madhesis first. Only after the problem of Madesis as a whole is settled will Madhesis will look at themselves and take care of their problem. Internal democracy with Congress and UML would not have been possible unless Gyanendra's rule ended. When Gyanendra was in Power, the main concern was how to get rid of his regime, not to have democracy within political parties.

Just like Nepal belongs to people of who live in Nepal and no one else. Madhes belongs to people who live there. Yes it also belongs to the Pahadis too. It belongs to people who live there and they should negotiate with the central government to share revenue. The central government stratgey to rule by an iron hand and dictate hoe much of revenue from Madhes will invested back in Madhesh can only backfire as people get more aware politically.

We have ample example on how dividing country along ethnic lines preserve national intergretity and prospers cultural indetity (India, Canada), and how failing to do so can create a huge problem (Sri Lanka). Upper cast Nepali speaking men will loose control of power in Nepal because they are a minority. Its time they realize and be gracious about giving up power and accepting true democracy.

Research shows that ethinically homegenous socities take better care of their surroundings and altruism is more common in such societies. Google keywords to google scholor if you wanna read more about it. Diving along ethinic lines will not only help everyone be proud of their identity, but help in building a prosperous Nepal.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Yubraj 3/7/2007 1:06:02 PM EST

Anand dai,

I am curious to know your response to these two issues.

1) "As an example, what destiny can the people of Humla, Jumla, and Rolpa chart when all they have are rugged mountains? The lumping together of, say, Rai and Magar, dalits and Sherpa, Bahun and the Chhetri would only exacerbate ethnic tensions further and prompt migration down to the plains, should hardship in the hills continue. Will the new state solve such problems by creating a culture of centrally-controlled fiscal handouts?"

2) "Imagine the Limbuwan province bypassing the tarai to sell hydropower to India region and keeping all the proceeds, or other pahadi regions seeing no incentive in preventing flooding to their south. Or the tarai keeping for itself all the profits from employment, tax receipts, and custom revenue from the industrial parks along its border."

To paraphrase (and twist a little and merge!) the questions: the situation of some people who have traditionally been discriminated against politically and economically will worsen. What assures that the powerful Tarai state created based on your vision will not be as indifferent to the plight of the rest of the country as the current Pahadi-dominated administration?

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
onta 3/7/2007 1:09:44 PM EST

I might be unaware, but how is India and Canada divided in ethnic lines?

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Hrishikesh 3/7/2007 3:08:56 PM EST

Most of the Indian states were created with ethnic boundaries. During British Raj, India had only 11 provinces. But after its independence more than 25 states were created. Madras province was divided into TamilNadu, Andhra Pradesh. Mysor was divided into Kerela and Karnatak. Bombay province was divided into Maharastra and Gujarat. Panjab into Panjab, Haryana and Himachal and Assam into Assam, Nagaland, manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya and Tripura. Recently from Bihar, Bihar and Jharkhand were created. Uttarkhand broke away from Uttar Pradesh. Chhattisdadh from Madhya Pradesh. Hindi is spoken as mother tongue by majority of people only in Bihar, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgadh and Haryana. Other states have their own state languages. If one looks at Indian politics, these ethnic boundaries have not supported Indian integrity. Most of the states in Northeast region (Assam, Meghalaya, Mezoram,Tripura, Nagaland and manipur) do not want to be within Indian Union. When I was in India for 4 yrs, I have realised how much the hatred is against India by the people in these states. It is wise not to call Indian to someone from Manipur and Nagaland. So as to many people from Assam. There is a tension between Tamil nadu and Karnataka. It is quite rude to speak in Hindi in Tamilnadu even if you don't know Tamil . Better use english.

We see stable india from Nepal. To some extent it is true. We don't realise arm struggles to form independent states by northeast indian states, Panjab and Kashmir. This is because Hindi speaking states of India dominate Indian politics and Nepal borders mostly with this region. A strong central govt with mighty military is the key reason why India has not disintegrated.

Looking at the present situation in Nepal, Nepal is likely not to have a strong central govt. There are two arm forces. Ethnic boundaries will not give justice to more than 90 ethnic groups of Nepal. At present Pahadiya khas (mostly Brahmin and Chhetries) are blamed for what Nepal have become. Its true to some extent as rulars have been mostly from this group. They are also the largest ethnic group. 46% of nepalese belong to this group which includes pahadiaya dalits to Brahmin and Chhetries. They are the largest group in more than 50% of the districts in Nepal. Is it justifiable to make Khas state in Nepal which covers more than 50% of land? Do they really need a state? definetely not. However if other ethnic groups get their own states and this group is politically marginalized will they also not ask for it in future? It is true, Madhesis and Janajatis were neglected in the past and they have right to protest against and ask what benifits them but at the same time they also have responsibility to respect other ethnic groups. Their differences with Pahadiya Bahun and Chetris should not lead other janajatis to disadvantage. Future Nepal should include all ethnic groups but not by creating states which are likely to create further differences as in many Indian states. In my opinion, let all the states to be formed having Himal, Pahad and Tarai. Give more power to district govt to decide what that district needs.

Quote: Originally posted by onta

I might be unaware, but how is India and Canada divided in ethnic line
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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680Anand 3/7/2007 3:13:49 PM EST

Yubraj,

Here is my response:

)1) "As an example, what destiny can the people of Humla, Jumla, and Rolpa chart when all they have are rugged mountains? The lumping together of, say, Rai and Magar, dalits and Sherpa, Bahun and the Chhetri would only exacerbate ethnic tensions further and prompt migration down to the plains, should hardship in the hills continue. Will the new state solve such problems by creating a culture of centrally-controlled fiscal handouts?"

The central govermnet will let them decide how to channelize their resources and stay out of their fiscal policy. Based on the GDP per capita of the state, the central government will waive federal tax for states that love GDP per capita. Labor will be mobile, so hilly folks are welcome to come Madhes and Madhesis are welcome to go to hilly regions.

For example, The Madhesh state can contribute 50% of the revenue to the central gov. Karnali need not contribute only 2% if it is lowest state with GDP per capita. But if it builds some hydro-electric project and its GDP become greatest in the country, they will also be paying 50% to central government.

The patronizing attitue of Bohra is quite offensive. Lets ask the Karnali people if they would like to have their own state, or mix up with Dhangadi and Nepalgunj.

2) "Imagine the Limbuwan province bypassing the tarai to sell hydropower to India region and keeping all the proceeds, or other pahadi regions seeing no incentive in preventing flooding to their south. Or the tarai keeping for itself all the profits from employment, tax receipts, and custom revenue from the industrial parks along its border."

Madhesis can't keep everything. There are laws and there is a contitution. But what I am against is the leadership in Kathmandu deciding how much of revenue should be spent in madesh in how much Pahad. What I am saying is that decision should be teh result of negotiation between the central government in kathmandu and the regional government of Madhesh. It like a basic right. And is bound to happen eventually. Nepalese will only become more politically aware in the years to come.

Quote: Originally posted by Yubraj

Anand dai,

I am curious to know your response to these two issues.

1) "As an example, what destiny can the people of Humla, Jumla, and Rolpa chart when all they have are rugged mountains? The lumping together of, say, Rai and Magar, dalits and Sherpa, Bahun and the Chhetri would only exacerbate ethnic tensions further and prompt migration down to the plains, should hardship in the hills continue. Will the new state solve such problems by creating a culture of centrally-controlled fiscal handouts?"

2) "Imagine the Limbuwan province bypassing the tarai to sell hydropower to India region and keeping all the proceeds, or other pahadi regions seeing no incentive in preventing flooding to their south. Or the tarai keeping for itself all the profits from employment, tax receipts, and custom revenue from the industrial parks along its border."

To paraphrase (and twist a little and merge!) the questions: the situation of some people who have traditionally been discriminated against politically and economically will worsen. What assures that the powerful Tarai state created based on your vision will not be as indifferent to the plight of the rest of the country as the current Pahadi-dominated administration?

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Yubraj 3/7/2007 4:21:10 PM EST

Anand dai, Thanks. Follow up question--

3) The issue of political and economic power that you describe can easily be discussed in the constituent assembly. And to get there, all you need is a fair share of representation from Tarai during those elections, which the government has already promised. Therefore, shouldn't this movement stop so that the elections to the constituent assembly can be held on time? What is this ongoing agitation for?

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/7/2007 5:03:03 PM EST

Thats correct. The issue of can be discussed in the cosntituent assembly and that how it should be. But don't see all kinds of attempt to make the constituent assembly a puppet instutution, where Girija and Prachanda and Madhav Nepal and Deuba will essentially decide the country's fate? All of them are Pahadi bahun, and have a track record for trivilaizing the Madhesis grivenaces. How do you expect a normal Madhesis to have faith in such government.

Most Madhesi, inclduing me, don't trust people who are calling shots when it comes to having fair representation of Madhesis. Girjia needed death more than 40 people Madhesi and critical injury of more than 50 people to apologize. And the home minister hasn't resigned yet? I mean how do expect Madhesis to trust such government.

What Girija promised is still wishy washy, turns out. Not that I am surprised. Why hasn't 49% seats been allocated to the Terai yet?

What sucks is we can't even have faith in main stream media, and our human right expert. There true colors or their deeply held prejudiced surfaced in this revolutions. I see no end to respect of Madhesis, unless Madhesis are granted a separate state.

If the home minister resigns, and 49% seats are actually allocated to the Terai, this revolution will stop. But this government has no intentions of sitting down for talks. They do not want to give legitimacy to MRPF. I don't blame Upendra Yadav for not sitting for talks until Situala resigns. If he does that, not only will he loose support from Madhesis, like me, but will encourage me to look upto Jwala Singh and Goit.

Quote: Originally posted by Yubraj

Anand dai, Thanks. Follow up question--

3) The issue of political and economic power that you describe can easily be discussed in the constituent assembly. And to get there, all you need is a fair share of representation from Tarai during those elections, which the government has already promised. Therefore, shouldn't this movement stop so that the elections to the constituent assembly can be held on time? What is this ongoing agitation for?

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/7/2007 5:07:54 PM EST
Quote: Originally posted by 680 Anand

Thats correct. The issue of can be discussed in the cosntituent assembly and that how it should be. But don't see all kinds of attempt to make the constituent assembly a puppet instutution, where Girija and Prachanda and Madhav Nepal and Deuba will essentially decide the country's fate? All of them are Pahadi bahun, and have a track record for trivilaizing the Madhesis grivenaces. How do you expect a normal Madhesis to have faith in such government.

Most Madhesi, inclduing me, don't trust people who are calling shots when it comes to having fair representation of Madhesis. Girjia needed death more than 40 people Madhesi and critical injury of more than 50 people to apologize. And the home minister hasn't resigned yet. I think its a insult to this uprising that he hasn't resigned and thats what Madhesis are most pissed about. And guess what-- many Pahadi friends I have also think that he should not resign. Thats how deep the prejudice is. How can you expect Madhesis to trust such government, specially when everyone calling the shots happen to be from the same clan.

What Girija promised is still wishy washy, turns out. Not that I am surprised. Why hasn't 49% seats been allocated to the Terai yet?

What sucks is we can't even have faith in main stream media, and our human right expert. There true colors or their deeply held prejudiced surfaced in this revolutions. I see no dignity of Madhesis, unless Madhesis are granted a separate state.

If the home minister resigns, and 49% seats are actually allocated to the Terai, this revolution will stop. But this government has no intentions of sitting down for talks. They do not want to give legitimacy to MRPF. I don't blame Upendra Yadav for not sitting for talks until Situala resigns. If he does that, not only will he loose support from Madhesis, like me, but will also encourage me to look upto Jwala Singh and Goit.

Quote: Originally posted by Yubraj

Anand dai, Thanks. Follow up question--

3) The issue of political and economic power that you describe can easily be discussed in the constituent assembly. And to get there, all you need is a fair share of representation from Tarai during those elections, which the government has already promised. Therefore, shouldn't this movement stop so that the elections to the constituent assembly can be held on time? What is this ongoing agitation for?

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
onta 3/7/2007 5:34:39 PM EST

I might be naive here, but why do Madhesi want 49% of the seats? Is that because of the population? If so, then Sherpa and Limbu will only have, say 2% of the seats. Then, they will have no say in any matter. They just have to align themselves with someone else? Are their views not important as Madhesi? Also if everyone is going to think about just their ethnicity, and try to put their ethinicty above everything else, who is going to raise voice for national interest? Not Sherpa and Limbu for sure because their voice will not even be heard.

The theory of federal government with states in ethnic lines only work, if at all, with strong central government. And it is clear that Nepal will never have strong central government who can actually have power to distribute resource equally. So if we are to go this route, the only outcome I see is disintegration of Nepal. Is that what everybody wants?

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/7/2007 6:08:14 PM EST

Madhesis wan't one-man-one vote. Thats how democracy work. If 49% percent of people lives in the Madhesh, 49% of the total seats must be allocated for the people who live there. Dividing along ethinic lines gives power to Rais and Limbu's althought they represent 2% of the population, when they are the nation is divided along ethinic lines, rather than any other lines. Majority of the local decision will be made by this small state within Nepal where majority of people are Rai and Limbu. To go a step further, I would suggest that there be a upper house which also has elected members ( like sentaorsin the US) and that can be 1 or 2 from each state. That is Madhes with 50% of the population and Kirants with 5% of the population will both have equal power in the upper house. Any laws of national importance will have to be passed by the upper house. Maybe we can give each state veto too, just like they have in the US.

What I am suggesting is actually going to give more power to severly marginalized communities that have small population as well.

Nepal will not disintergrate if we give space for all ethinic communities to govern them selves, but rather trying to pull of a Mahendra style intergration ( with really strong central government) will lead us back to Panchyat era. The only difference will be that you will have Prachanda, Girija or Madhav Nepal, or somebody from their gang ruling the country.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Yubraj 3/8/2007 9:08:42 AM EST

I see this discussion getting somewhere, so I am going to continue to follow up.
First of all, I agree with Anand dai that Tarai grievances have been trivialized, both by the government and the media. What’s more, the tussle going on between the Maoists and the Seven Party Alliance (SPA), hopefully for a positive outcome, has overshadowed the strikes in Tarai.

Coming back to the two main demands that the MPRF has raised before talking to the government, two questions for Anand dai again--

5. Re: 49% seat, if I remember right, the proposal has been stuck in the parliament. GPK has little to do at this point. Wouldn’t it be wise on part of the MPRF to pause the protests for now and wait until the interim parliament decides on the proposal instead of letting the protest to continue? What point is there in destroying property and affecting lives of the general people in Tarai when we know that uncertainties abound in the very issue we have been demanding?

6. Re: home minister’s resignation, this is a man who brought the Maoists to the table and was instrumental in convincing them to come to the mainstream politics. Obviously we do not want to be so reliant on one person, but if this person resigns and goes out of the game, I am afraid the whole peace process might be aborted. As much as I dislike the fact that he did not act on time to save 21 lives in Tarai, Sitaula seems like a man of reasons and prudence—unlike many hawaa politicians we have seen—and people have started believing in him. Besides, he might be gone when the interim government is constituted anyway. Finally, isn’t asking people to resign on moral grounds a little strange? Isn’t resignation on moral grounds supposed to come from the person himself/herself (by definition)?

A question for Sagar dai:

7) What’s the disintegration you are talking about? If you are like one of those people who believe Nepal will be “swallowed” by India or a third country, don’t you think we are being too paranoid? You might want to check out the recent article by Daniel Lak in the recent issue of the Nepali Times for a convincing reason why this fear is unfounded.

More later,
Yubraj

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680Anand 3/8/2007 2:28:16 PM EST

Yubraj,

Here is my response.

1. I agree that Situala has done a fine job in gaining the confidence of the Maoist. He should be rewarded for it. But then he has failed terribly has a home minister. Have you seen the Nepalgunj video? Have you yet heard or read anywhere that the policemen involved in that blatant terror against Madhesis have been suspended?

This what should be done: give him a medal for bringing Maoist and honor him for that, but he has to be taken to court for using excessive force again people fighting for their rights. Isn't Kamal Thapa in court because of excessive force during April reovoultion? Impunity against crime has to end, be it by the home minister or a dacoit.

I wasn't talking about resigning on moral grounds. The guy needs to be pusnished. He needs to fired first if he doesn't resign. It's a shame that he is still the home minister and greater shame that he is being protected.

2. The government hasn't appeared sincere in giving 49% seats to the Terai. Its like the big Vashan on inclusive democracy they gave in the interim constitution, but the interim constitution gave ample room to interpret in way to avoid inclusiveness.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/8/2007 11:31:50 PM EST

http://www.economist.com/world/asia/displaystory.cfm?story_id=8828110
Last edited on 3/9/2007 2:17:17 PM EST

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Yubraj 3/9/2007 8:43:06 AM EST

Anand dai,

I have seen some of the Nepalgunj videos and I am with you in saying that what the policemen have been doing is disgraceful. And disturbing. In some cases, you see policemen supporting Pahadi rioters who are destroying shops owned by Madhesis. Whoever is giving orders to shoot should be brought to court just like Kamal Thapa and Tanka Dhakal.

BUT

8. Would you agree with me that their blatant use of force has more -- if not just as much -- to do with their homegrown misconception that Taraibasis are second class citizens -- an attitude that would take years of modern, liberal education to change -- than with orders from the government to supress the movement by force?

9. Would you agree me that given the lack of international attention to this issue, it will take **many** deaths before Madhesis can have their demands met? Just think of it, it took 21 deaths before GPK bent a little and that too at a time when the Maoist-SPA relationship wasn't the roughest. I am not saying the Madhesis should just go home and eat snacks, but the timing of the protest seems a disadvantageous (strategically) to me. Kathmandu is literally turning a deaf ear to these protests, with major human right and civil society groups protesting for a much trivial cause--to punish the King!

FINALLY,

10. Is there anything that the government can do to prove that it is serious about the talks and about providing 49% seats to Tarai in the election apart from asking Krishna Sitaula to go?

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Yubraj 3/9/2007 8:50:10 AM EST

I noticed a bunch of errors in the previous posting - please correct them as you read. --Y.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/9/2007 9:26:19 AM EST

Yubraj,

The reason why Krian Situala is being defended is because political parties do not want to accept responibility for the brutality shown during the Madhesi movement. I fail to see how Kiran Sitaula resigning would jeopradize the peace process. Its not about one person resiging, and it about the lack of disrecpect for the cause that the administration is showing. The political parties need to win the trust of Madhesis. They think its not necesary, they will do well in election anyway. I do not see any other way to signal the sincerity towards listening to Madhesis grievances than Sitaula resigning. Maybe a complete PR system and a committe to investigate the brutality during the urprising could help.

As far as your argument about education goes, I don't really believe in that. Educated Nepali speaking people I have met far more racist than the uneducated Nepali people I have met. I think there is more truth to "Education just makes you express your prejudice in a more articulate way", than "education makes you more tolerant towards other cultures."

What makes you tolerant towards other culture is that if you know you are dependent on other people for good living. Thats why Pahadi must be as dependent on Madhesis , as Madhesis are on pahadi-- you will how respect will come in no time.

Its about power, and respect will follow. If Kirants have their own state, own identity and better economic condition and if a upper cast Nepali speaking guy wants to work in Ilam, he is bound to show respect to Kirantis.

If a Yadav become the Prime Minister of Nepal, the Rana and Shahs need to take his orders and show respect towards him. So it all going to come when their is a fair share of power. You will suddenly see how a culture that has been ridiculed by the ruling elite of Kathmandu, starting to glorifying it.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Ke 3/9/2007 12:45:40 PM EST

Where is the leadership? Why do I even bother to ask, since that has never existed.

Before it was money and power politics, then it was thug politics and now it is violence and sissy politics.

Shouldn't someone be stepping up and saying that this is all bullshit. Everyone is looking for a political solution to something that just won't happen that way. These are precarious times and our generation will go down in history as promoting a failed state.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
3/9/2007 3:53:16 PM EST

In a broad category, all people living in Terai should have been called madheshi. However its not true. Pahadiya living in Madhesh don't considered themselves as Madhesi because others don't believe it. They are also not Pahadiya because either they never lived in Pahad or they left pahad parmanently. There are millions of people in Madesh with pahadi origion. Tharus don't call themselves madhesis nor Sonaha, Chepangs of Makwanpur, Darai and many others who are native to madhesh. The people who consider themselves as Madhesis are Maithali, Bhojpuri and Abadhi. They are the one who are also demanding seperate Madhesh state. Maithali with 12.1%, Bhojpuri with 7.4% and Awadhi with 2.4% make 22% of Nepals population ie appx. 44% of Terai population. More than 1/3 of Terai resident are of Pahadi origion. At the time MJF was at strike, tharus also went on strike because they do not like the concept of a single Madhesh as a state which will be dominated by Maithalis of east. They wanted to have their own state. If whole Madesh wanted 49% of seats in parliament, why we don't see any terai resident of pahadi origion in the strike. Why MJF leaders are only from Maithali, Bhojpuri and Awadhi communities. All pahadi origion people are not bahun and Chhetries. So we can not say they all are previleged ones. Definetely madheshi were neglected by the state in the past to some extent, but I am not convinced why Terai needs to be a single state just bacause of that. Can't we now develop a feeling of equality and live together with equal right wherever we live in Nepal.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Bull Sh...T 3/9/2007 6:44:10 PM EST

Anand

Stop calling PAHADI BAHUNS and crap and call someone by their caste ... Its same like saying Madise or Marsya (as Newars from KTM)... so don't even go there dude....

Secondly....who is Kiran sitaula ? Is Kiran sitaula Home minister currently? Your big DAI Parmendra must have said so much stuff about KIRAN SITAULA dai that you can not even distinguish between KIRAN and Krishna..

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
nobody 3/9/2007 9:55:10 PM EST

Let's get past the unusually civil discourse going on here and tell Anand dai something to his face (this is what his arguments deserve, after all):

- You are being stupidly stubborn about the whole thing and I really hope your agenda fails.
- The fact that you can mistakenly (or was it even a typo? I wonder if it was a Freudian slip) ask for Kiran Sitaula's resignation and be stubborn about is enough to make one wonder if this is but something personal with you? (What happened to you? Which specific incident with a "pahade bahun" scarred you like this?) Do you really want Krishna Prasad Sitaula's resignation because of his failure to control the situation or simply because he happens to be what you call a pahade bahun?

Last edited on 3/9/2007 9:58:11 PM EST
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ha ha ha ..why should kiran dai resign ?
bokabaal 3/9/2007 10:04:53 PM EST

"The reason why Krian Situala is being defended is because political parties do not want to accept responibility for the brutality shown during the Madhesi movement. I fail to see how Kiran Sitaula resigning would jeopradize the peace process."

Kiran dai, do you have anything to say about it ?

Quote: Originally posted by 680 Anand

Yubraj,

The reason why Krian Situala is being defended is because political parties do not want to accept responibility for the brutality shown during the Madhesi movement. I fail to see how Kiran Sitaula resigning would jeopradize the peace process. Its not about one person resiging, and it about the lack of disrecpect for the cause that the administration is showing. The political parties need to win the trust of Madhesis. They think its not necesary, they will do well in election anyway. I do not see any other way to signal the sincerity towards listening to Madhesis grievances than Sitaula resigning. Maybe a complete PR system and a committe to investigate the brutality during the urprising could help.

As far as your argument about education goes, I don't really believe in that. Educated Nepali speaking people I have meet far more racist than the uneducated Nepali people I have meet. I think there is more truth to "Education just makes you express your prejudice in a more articulate way", than "education makes you more tolerant towards other cultures."

What makes you tolerant towards other culture is that if you know you are dependent on other people for good living. Thats why Pahadi must be as dependent on Madhesis , as Madhesis are on pahadi-- you will how respect will come in no time.

Its about power, and respect will follow. If Kirants have their own state, own identity and better economic condition and if a upper cast Nepali speaking guy wants to work in Ilam, he is bound to show respect to Kirantis.

If a Yadav become the Prime Minister of Nepal, the Rana and Shahs need to take his orders and show respect towards him. So it all going to come when their is a fair share of power. You will suddenly see how a culture that has been ridiculed by the ruling elite of Kathmandu, starting to glorifying it.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/10/2007 2:05:11 AM EST

Oops sorry about that. I have a lot of respect for Kiran dai.

Obviously, I meant Krishna Situala. I really don't mind being called Madhesi. I see that a word that is going to be cool in the future. I stand by the notion that Krishna Sitaula should resign and anyone who defends him is just pretending to believe in the Madhesi cause.

I think Pahadi prejudice against Madhesis is very deeply held even by ordinary Pahadi folks. This sermon of good will is a sham. Madhesis need to first protect themseleves from Pahadi prejudice and then listen to to sermon of good will.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/10/2007 11:50:47 AM EST

Here is comment I found in response to Alok Bohra's article:

Re: ‘Equal opportunity poverty’ (#338). Alok Bohara and Mani Nepal have researched their subject, but here is another point of view:

1. The accompanying map shows that except Jhapa, Morang, Sunsari and Chitwan ( where populations are predominantly pahadi), all the tarai districts have high incidences of poverty. Isn’t it surprising that a ‘resource-rich’ tarai didn’t fare well in the course of development for last few years? It will be interesting to compare the same map using 1970 data. Districts where the madhesi population is concentrated is much poorer than the hills to the north? Why was this overlooked in the otherwise well-researched article? Hope it’s not deliberate.

2. Ethnic groups are united by common cultural, behavioural, linguistic, ritualistic, or religious traits, usually but not always on the basis of a common genealogy or ancestry. Madhesis are a distinct ethnic group. Yadav is a caste, not an ethnic group. Arbitary grouping clustering without proper knowledge of social structure of madhesi ethnic groups may lead us to some misleading results. But if one is out to prove something, statistics can be bent.

3. Bohara and Nepal talks about resource sharing and say, ‘…resourceful regions could refuse to share benefits with less-privileged areas. Imagine the Limbuwan province bypassing the tarai to sell hydropower to India and keeping all the proceeds…’ I can’t see that happening. There will always be a powerful inclusive central government which will negotiate with the states concerned if a conflict arises. Moreover, the modality of resource sharing can be well defined in the constitution itself. Fear psychosis among few should not stop the demand for ethnic states once we all admit that there has been ethnic discrmination in past. To borrow from C K Lal, sentences starting with ‘But’, ‘While’, ‘However’, ‘Though’ to sympathise with the madhesi and janjati cause make them doubtful of the intentions of the ruling class.

Name withheld,
email
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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Yubraj 3/10/2007 5:16:58 PM EST

The April andolan proved that well-organized demonstrations on the street can bring down a regime. Every morning I wake up, I see the possibility of the Tarai movement calming down eventually, proving the fact that not every street demonstration can help achieve the goals of the demonstrators (needless to say I am losing support for these protests). My observation is based on:

(a) My communication with a small number of my friends from Tarai. They don’t see these strikes in Tarai having a mass appeal. Many of them are not from the so-called upper class nor did they grow up not seeing the discrimination against Madhesis in the streets of Kathmandu.

(b) The fact that the government has offered an olive branch to the two breakaway fractions of Maoists. If these two factions sit for talks and if the government fulfills a majority of their demands, many of which are similar to those of the MPRF, it will be stupid of the MPRF to continue their protests on the only ground that Sitaula has not resigned. Speaking of Sitaula’s resignation, I think it’s important to remember that the MPRF started asking for Sitaula’s resignation when the first person from the MPRF was shot by the Maoists. You can’t expect the home minister to resign everyday because there is someone killed by another person. Otherwise, you might as well ask for the Health Minister’s resignation every time someone in Karnali dies of diarrhea.

(c) The fact that many Nepalis, including Madhesis, will see a threat coming to the peace process from the Madhesi movement. Anand dai, while you are feel to label anyone who does not take your black-and-white approach a ‘pretender’, I think you have to understand that a bigger threat to the peace process (for Madhesis as well as for the rest) comes from the Maoists with whom Sitaula continues to deal successfully. Who do you think threaten the rights of Madhesis—gun-holding Maoists or the Pahadis who do not sympathize with the Maoists? And how many things do you expect the government to deal at a time? Isn’t it the responsibility of every Nepali citizen to help the government at a sensitive time like this? A median citizen would like to know answers to such questions before joining the Madhesi cause.

(d) These protests increasingly appear to be motivated by the struggle for the power of a few Madhesis and perhaps directed by the hardcore monarchists from behind the stage. Expecting Matrika Yadav to be appointed the Deputy Prime Minister, the timing of the protests, ridiculous arguments made for economic redistribution, and the recent announcement by one of the MPRF leaders that the protests have gone ‘out of control’ all attest to this claim. If this is not a struggle for power, MPRF should be able to leverage on the existing Madhesis in the government. On the contrary, the Madhesis in the parliament threatened to leave the legislature if the government was not serious about the Terai cause. That attitude is soooooo Maoist-like: you don’t try to change things from within and when gold does not fall from the sky on your plate (what would?!), you threaten to protest.

That everyone should have proper representation in the governance is something few can deny, but you don’t need a revolution like this one for economic redistribution. UML’s Aafno Gaau Aafai Banaau, for example, distributed 5 lakhs to each VDC during their 9 months rule. And if I am right, VDCs are divided based on population (there goes the equal representation issue)! How about lobbying for similar initiatives? Now that I think of it, where are our Madhesi activities and unemployed ex-truck drivers when initiators of such initiatives succumbed to lack of support from other parties—heck, even the Nepal Sadbhawana Party helped bring the UML government down!

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
Yubraj 3/10/2007 5:36:24 PM EST

Before someone complains saying I don't know the name of the leader of MPRF, here's a clarification: I meant Upendra Yadav, not Matrika Yadav.

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/11/2007 12:31:42 AM EST

Yubraj,

Maoist issue might be of bigger concern for you than Madhesis issue. For me, Madhesi issue is far more important. And a rigged up constitution legtimazies the discrimination is far more harmful.

Had it not been for the Madhesi urpsising, and had it not been for these brave Madhesis martyrs, that 49% percent for the Terai would not have been promised. And that still only a promise, and I do believe that Pahadi administration will use all kind of justification to sabotage that was apparently promised ( remember Girija didn't state clearly the 49% seats will be given to Terai, he left the language wish washy, and I bet it was for a reason).

And it does not need a fancy education or a fancy degree or a fancy employment status to figure these things out.

What it needs is getting rid of certain prejudice. No education, no degress, no seeing the world can get rid for that. Maybe some introspection can.

Last edited on 3/11/2007 12:39:13 AM EST
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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
hari 3/11/2007 11:38:07 AM EST

Anand dai,
Here is what I have to say.
I understand we need changes. But, how are we going to bring the changes? Follow Big bang approach or the gradual change? Look at China and Russia in their economic transformations...What worked and what did not work?

So, it is important to understand the situation better. It is ridiculous to say that madhesi issue is the most pressing issue when we had 13000+ people dead with the maoist issue. This is the very reason Nepal has failed to prosper. Everyone wants power and everyone wants to get to the top at the expense of the societal progress. It is people like Prachanda, and Yadav who destabilize the society for their personal gain. And, Yadav wants to be appointed as home-minister after forcing Sitaula to resign, right? Holy cow...what a shameless bunch of idiots...

And, here is Anand dai believing in all the sh*t they have been saying. There were a couple of madhesi leaders in the parliament before and some even managed to grab some ministerial portfolios. What benefits did the madhesi people get? Did it make a difference? Most are corrupted...believe me, most of them are and it is fruitless to shut down the whole country for this. Before you say they were underrepresented in parliament, let me tell you, there is a lot a minister or even a parliamentarian can do at his own discretion.

The government offered for talks and these stupid bunch of people want the resignation to be the first priority. What a shame!!! Are we against a person or the system out here?

Look at the law abiding citizens of Nepal…If one of their demands are not met, they will go for a “bandh” no matter how much the costs be. To be simple, these people aren’t aware of the actual costs. They are so narrow-minded that they do not have the capacity to gauze the costs and benefits of an action. One, we don't really have strict laws against such bandhs. Second, we really don't have a system to enforce the laws. Do you remember how much they had to pay when the workers of NY metro shut down the train for a while? I wish we had a similar punishment...

Look at the effect of curfew-the last resort to maintain peace and harmony in society and prevent any untoward incidents. Last time there was a curfew, there were hundreds of people in the street. If people think that muscles and guns can bring power and prosperity, when will the society operate under the rule of law? What if tomorrow, there are thousands of people from each side (lets say madhesi and pahadi) fighting with guns or some other weapons in Chitwan? Curfew won't work then either...So, it is important that we build up a tradition that respects the rule of law.

Seriously, I am tired.

Last edited on 3/11/2007 11:41:01 AM EST
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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
680 Anand 3/11/2007 12:21:26 PM EST

hari,

I never said that Upendra Yadav should be appointed the home minister. So please don't add stuff to what I have to say , and then go on saying what a shame it is nd blah blah . Lets be precise.

Situala has to resign as a home minister because under his leadership police used excessive force and sided openly with the Pahadis. The demand that MRPF leaders will not sit for talks until Situala resigns, is just.

You probably agress that excessive force was used for which was largely a non-violent protest, but you don't think Situala should resign. His not resigning from Home Ministry is putting CA elections into threat. MRPF leaders are ready to sit for talks if he resigns.

Its more like you are supporting Sitaula because he is a Pahadi, rather than me having anything against Situala. Why not keep some other Pahadi as a home minister.

Any who supports Situala as remaining in power I think privately believes that what Madhesis are being nusiance is distrubing the CA election, and what Situala did was good. Of course it would sound racist to write such a statement in SEBS forum, so it comes in a different form ( about Maoist issue will not get solved if Situala resigns and a home minister!!).

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Re: Identity politics obscures all-round deprivation
हात्ति छिर्यो पुच्छर अड्क्यो 3/11/2007 1:08:38 PM EST
Quote: Originally posted by 680 Anand

"His not resigning from Home Ministry is putting CA elections into threat. MRPF leaders are ready to sit for talks if he resigns."

So, nepal will gain more in the resignation of Krishna Prasad Sitaula, than in the successful conduct of Election to CA?? What a cause Madhesi leaders are fighting for! Doesn't this show that the madhesi leaders are more concerned about their personal gains that the societal gain at large. If the madhesi leaders are just waiting for the resignation of home minister what can be more unfortunate than this. Shame on those who think this is the way forward. It should already have been clear that the ellection to CA will be able to solve both the maiost problems as well as the problems faced by various ethnic communities including that of Madhesis. Isnt this in the best interest of all of us( Himalis, Pahadis, Madhesis)? '

Last edited on 3/11/2007 1:09:14 PM EST
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Comments

Anonymous said…
So, you are back to square one. Fight Bahunbad not bahuns.