By Jivesh Jha–
With the Indian establishment intensified its’ strong arm-tactic on Kathmandu politics, citing the dissatisfaction over certain provisions of the recently promulgated new Constitution, Sadhbavna Party (SP) Chairman Rajendra Mahato has asserted that “What is good for India is good for Madhes.”
His controversial remark has come at a time when Kathmandu has seen the Indian intervention as a threat on the country’s territorial integrity and sovereignty. “The nationalism of Nepali speaking people, the Pahadis, is based on opposition of India and anti-Indian sentiments alone. Only a strong Madheshi can weaken that anti-India drive,” leader Mahato told The Indian Express, an influential Indian English daily. Yes, indeed, a Madhesi like him can only act as puppet of Indian establishment.
He further said that Madhesi movement is grateful for the support India has extended, especially since September 20, when the new constitution was adopted. “If this support lessens, the Madhesh movement will fail and it will be life of slavery for us. If this movement weakens again, it will mean that Bharat will fail.” The SP Chair Mahato has not made such type of unprecedented statement for the first time. Soon after getting his hand burnt in the second Constituent Assembly (CA) poll, Mahato had asserted that the loss of Madhesi parties in the election was the loss of India. He had also clarified that the Madhesi parties were there just to serve the interest of India.
This author in an article had claimed that the Madhes movement was carried by the hired goons of neighboring state of UP & Bihar. Further, the movement is capitalized at the behest of Indian establishment. Though I was briefly criticized by some sections of society, with the fresh argument of Mahato, my claim has attained its relevancy.
These leaders claim that the issues of Madhes have been put under suspended animation by Kathmandu, the Madhesis have never been given equal status as the Hill people enjoy, and the Madhesis have time and again had to prove their Nepali credentials and loyalty to the Nepali state. For a Nepali person of ordinary prudence, such politically motivated statements seem anti-national.
The Madhesi people widely condemned the national media of being ‘biased towards the Madhes movement’. Also they claimed that the national media failed to carry the true picture of the movement. What I believe that the media is doing their duty, it’s not polluting their duty. Further, it’s working for the cause of national interest. However, the so called Messiah leaders of Madhesh have proven their loyalty now—“We are more loyal to India than Nepal.”
In the last month, Mahato had also claimed that Madhes movement was no more under their control. The recent conversation with the Indian newspaper clarified today that it’s in whose fresh control. I don’t need to elaborate it further. It is well understood in Nepali streets that the New Delhi is the Mecca and Medina of Madhes politics. From the very date of establishment, these parties have very beautifully stood by the neck-to-neck of southern neighbor.
Indeed, the Madhes movement has attained its height in such a manner that had forced the Nepali major political parties to re-think for making amendment s in some of the provisions of recently promulgated constitution. Whose interest, these parties are serving? Why these parties should not be labeled as poppet of southern politics? Mahatma Gandhi has rightly said that if a person does not love his country cannot love anyone. Indeed, if these leaders cannot love their own country, how come they can love its own people? Madhesi people should think twice before lending any kind of support in favor of these leaders, who are simply sent in the territory of Nepal to serve the interest of some foreign power.
The fertile land of Madhes has given birth to so many god-like humans, like Gautam Buddha, Sita, Janak, and many others. Moreover, this soil has greatly been made polluted by the some of the leaders, especially who are self-declared Messiah of Madhes. What these god-like humans dreamed for Madhes and with what we are blessed with.
Through this article, I want to suggest Mr Mahato Ji to join the legislature of Indian state of Bihar as he is fit for that. However, he is dormant for Kathmandu politics. On a separate context, the Union Home Minister of India Raj Nath Singh has recently said that millions of Indians are residing across the southern plain of Nepal. Madhesis are the inhabitants of Nepal, not India. It would have better had the union minister Singh gone through the basic general knowledge, and then his tongue would not have slipped. Similarly, Mahato and among other Madhesi leaders seem to be mute spectator on the issue of border encroachment by India in many places such as Susta, Kalapani and Lipulekh.
On different occasions, the Terai land has been encroached at the hands of southern neighbor. Moreover, the SSB force deployed across the Indian frontier outrage the modesty of common Madhesis. The Nepali Madhesis have been victimized for years—either entering into Nepali soil or by intimidating those Madhesis who go to local markets for purchasing daily goods on a daily basis. Sadly, for this plight of Madhesi genuine people, these leaders always remain mum. In the election of manifestos, they distribute the ambitious plans for Madhes. However, as soon the election fever ends, these leaders forget their promises made to the common people during election time. Further, they also distribute Sarees, pressure cookers, cycles and other utensils to woo the rural electorates. The Madhesi people should now realize who these leaders are and whose interest they are serving?
These leaders always seem to instigate the Madhesi people by making statements on communal lines. It has been accepted on all hands in Madhes that to be a true Madhesi, you have to be attacking towards Hill community people. And the credit goes to Madhesi parties for breeding this type of communal notions in southern plains. The racist worldviews have never benefited any society. Then how come it would benefit Madhes? The land where the discriminatory thoughts are breed instead of paddy and other crops would certainly fail to breed the intellectual class. Madhesi leaders must think how to avoid inequality, poverty, illiteracy, backwardness and untouchability in Madhes and work for the betterment of common people.
(Jivesh Jha is a Nepali student who is currently pursuing Masters Degree in Dehradun, India)