Talking about nationality and freedom
Talking about nationality and freedom
— By Salik Shah
I’m trying to contact Jwala Singh- to ask him if he really thinks that the people of this country would support his two-nation dictum? I don’t even think that the idea of creating a free nation can be feasible. I doubt if you’ve read my very first write up on the topic (I’d like you to read this write up).
Yes- the idea of an independent Madhesh is very, very old. And every Madhesi in some point of their lives must have thought of it. But with time- I’ve learned to accept the fact that we, our land, our Madhesh is crucial for the existence of this entire country- Nepal. I’m proud to be a Madhesi unlike ever before because without Madhesh- my New Nepal would not come into existence. I don’t want a separate state- because today, any move in this direction will only invite disaster and more bloodshed.
Moreover, I do think that Jwala Singh will surely abandon the very demand once they are provided a face-saving landing- once this eight-party (Maoists) express willingness to respect the sentiment of Terai inhabitations and provide us with more, more and more “rights” (this want for more is ruining everything- either it be reputation of Maoists or Girija’s stand on monarchy). Yes- if someday, I need to revolt then I can surely learn from the Maoists-led insurgency. But these adamant and proud pahades and their worshippers are going against the true sentiment of Madheshi people.
Even if they become successful in dismissing the Madhesi leaders and parties such as JTMM and MPRF- even if they solve all the problems by suppressing the people’s voices with the barrel of guns and eliminate the very roots of monarchy from the institution- I’ll surely raise my voice again, there are thousands of people like me who will raise their voices again- because freedom is such a dream that is worth dying for. I don’t think without addressing social and cultural issues- the Madhesh andolan or the andolan of indigenous communities can be solved.
As far as the demand of the Madhesi extremists groups are concerned- I made it clear it’s in hearts of everyone- but I don’t think that Newar, Tharu, Khumbuwaan, Limbuwaan or Madheshi communities would really want to (*or can) rebalkanize the territorial integrity of the country. United we stand- divide we fall is old but my favorite saying too.Until the dialogues are initiated- and the very groups are brought to the table for talks- they will keep on making such demands, and I respect them for their courage- but like the Maoists’ cause is really “good” unlike their mannerisms- I believe that armed movements are thousand times weaker than a non-violent movement in all its might and purity of thoughts and actions. What we Nepalese know is only how to burn tyres, vandalize, call for strikes and bandhs or resort to killings and kidnappings- we don’t have courage to walk on the path of Gandhi and King (who do you think I’m referring to). But if this old generation fails to free the people of Nepal, from each corner of the country and from every community- I won’t be surprised, even if that would make me a little sad. This old generation of Nepali politicians were brought up in the very society full of discrimination, contradictions and corruption- and the democracy was such a new thing- but now, we know the meaning of democracy, we know the demerits of corruption and the importance of communal harmony– we’re living on the top mouth of volcano (symbolically, and earthquake geographically), however, the new generation of Nepali politicians would (let’s hope they do) know where to find the way and how to walk on the difficult lanes to a country where there is “unity within diverse communities” in real sense. It is high time that the suppressed feelings borne of discriminations and injustices get a “safe outlet” that would be utilized for the development of the country and to strengthen the ties among the estranged communities. Yes- YCL needs to be embraced and taught with “love” how to treat the very people they treat as scum and impotents as humans again.
First hold dialogues- then we would reach to a conclusion. If we start to assume that the Madheshi extremist would not leave their demands of an independent state even without initiating the diaoluges- then it is the very sign of the old authoritarianism and ignorance widespread like a disease in our old gentlemen- from head to toe of our major political parties. If we fail to bring them to the political mainstream- then the people will force them to join- because I don’t think there is any other passage to “freedom”.
Hold dialogues. Our Maoists friends should start holding dialogues with their ex-allies- it’s really disheartening to see a party coming from such a long so-called “people’s war” being “swept off” from the Madhesh today. If they don’t recognize JTMM as “people’s party” but as a terrorist- no wonder that this party and its cadres are having difficult days in the region. Even for them- it would be better to keep their “superiority complex” at home.
Dialogues, dialogues and dialogues- there is no other solutions to the problems we are facing today. But I’m surprised why these old people don’t understand this simple fact- perhaps, Prachanda is too sure of becoming the president of the country within two years that he doesn’t mind even if Madhesi youth raise arms, Pahades force others into their rallies in Madhesh, Limbuwaan and Khumbuwaan bring the entire region to halt or Newars in the capital don’t let them stay in their houses. They surely have killed many innocent people during the last twelve years- and the tales of their injustices will surely resurface with time- I only remember someone saying me- “The lava- the strong emotions to avenge the death of their near to dear ones- the long suppressed desire to take on them one by one will surely burst up one day. When this volcano finally erupts- once these Maoists put down their guns- I can’t even imagine where it will lead to our nation.” I don’t know if I remain a sceptic, be positively optimistic or a completely pessimist regarding the prospects of that new nation.
Surely my friend, insane am I.
Such is my plight.
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