Friday, April 21, 2006

My Most Controversial Blog Post To Date: On Madhesi Issue

There are 723 blog posts at this blog. None has generated as much controversy as this one: Aire Gaire Natthu Khaire Pahadis. This goes to prove my claim that the Madhesi-Pahadi issue is the number one social issue in Nepal. There are Dalit, Janajati and Mahila issues, but ask the people in those groups in the Terai. The Madhesi issues is the mega reality in Nepal for each of those three groups.

There are two threads at SEBS Online dedicated to this blog post.
  1. Bhagat goes crazy over madeshi issue -
  2. started by thota on 4/17/2006 8:27:13 PM EST
  3. Calling for a social boycott of Paramendra Bhagat's Blog started by pilot on 4/18/2006 2:25:36 AM EST
Much of it is sheer name calling by people hiding behind the computer screen, not willing to put their name next to their words. The cover of anonymity though does seem to allow for a thorough expression of deeply held prejudices.

This is what I posted there:
Re: Bhagat's blog
Paramendra Bhagat 4/19/2006 11:52:30 PM EST

A friend drew my attention to this sidetrack discussion at SEBS online, a site that I don't much frequent.

Please feel free to engage me in the comments section of my blog. I visit that every day. If it is worth your trouble.

A few quick points:

BNKS is as disfigured as Nepal. In terms of not being inclusive in its composition. The background of the people at this thread is reflective of that.

In my blog entry I have given reasons to Madhesis to come out all for this revolution. Noone who reads my blog can doubt my commitment to the revolution.

As for the Madhesi-Pahadi issue, we could go round and round in circles, or we could talk in a productive framework.

Let me know where you stand on this. And then we will be talking.

See you in my comments sections.

PS. As for "boycott," my blog's readership recently has gone up by a factor of 4.
And then popped this email in my inbox.
Date: Thu, 20 Apr 2006 15:16:53 -0400
From: "Hari Sharma"
Subject: difference gone deep

Bhagat bro!

I used to side with your arguments a while ago but from what you have displayed lately, my ignorance as to a real Bhagat has been evident. I am not denying the fact that some folks in Terai are being exploited by other people but that does not warrant your attitude. Given the current socio-political scenario, I disagree this is the time to fight over all issues. I agree freedom is important but that does not mean absolute equality. Opportunities should not be made exclusive but if some "pahadis is your word but I hate to use it" grab those opportune moments while "madhesis-your word again but I hate to use it" lay back.

Again, I am not denying the exploitation but you have been largely selfish and self-centered out here. How are those folks in deep ignorance in the rural Terai region going to understand the hi-fi attitude of a New Yorker? And how is this guy from NY going to relieve them of supression?

Barking from NY does not make sense specially when the community you are fighting for is largely uneducated. If you dare work for them, go back to Nepal. Go to every freaking village and raise awareness. Work with local government or the central one. If they don't listen to you, go into a freaking election. Get elected by "your majority" and fight it. These options are not there right now but soon will be there. And it has been long since you started this issue. So, your real motivation is in suspect. Admit that you are selfish and all you want is publicity.

Let me provide some evidences as to how you are acting irrational and insane recently.

"This is a Pahadi Raja. That is why he needs to be shown the door. A Madhesi could be president."

-Whoever it is, we are against the very ideology of kingship. It is against the democratic norms. A madhesi could be president but we have no regrets over pahadi becoming one. You are a freaking racist(if i may bring pahadis and madhesis as being two different races).

To support my argument that you are racist, here is another...from the same article:

"Gagan Thapa might be a republican, but he is a Pahadi republican."

What the hell are you talking about? You deserve the ridicule you received for you are acting insane here. We should be able to respect every person. That is how we are going to co-exist. If someone is good, we should respect him no matter whether he is a pahadi or madhesi.

"If there are five central figures in this revolution worldwide, I am one of them. Madhav Nepal acknowledges that, and he is the person who is going to be the first president of Nepal. He might say I am one, and he is another. But I am being generous, I am saying five.I routinely interact with Pahadi activist amateurs who are part timers, who probably can't spell the word politics correctly. But I have written a whole full-fledged constitution for the country. I am second to none in this revolution in the message department, be it in Nepal or India or Europe, America, Australia, Hong Kong, Arabia."

Hey man! wake up. Nobody cares how Madhav Nepal thinks of you. And your sense of "I" is the symbol of your dying battery. Try to be humble and that will earn you some respect.

"But the thing about the rally on Friday is at that point in time I also was doing well in the organization department. I am the founding president of Hamro Nepal which has been hailed in the blogosphere as the "world's first dital democracy organization." But Pahadi media has still to pick it up."

I am in USA and still it took me so long to hear about your hamro nepal. So, don't freaking blame pahadi media. I respect every person with attitude. You are simply not the one.

"My personal life does not depend on any Pahadi. My career neither. As for Hamro Nepal, I get reminded of the Subhash Chandra Bose line, tum mujhe khoon do, main tumhe ajadi doonga. The Pahadi nobodies in America need me to attain political dignity. When you go grocery shopping, you don't do the grocery store a favor."

-Remember you are fighting for those folks in terai who are largely dependent on pahadi folks. So, they need each other despite your freaking stubborn nature. Life is not as easy as writing in a blog. And remember that you got education in BNKS where you shaped yourself to this extent with the help of all of your friends. You don't need them does not mean you never got help from them. ( I am not talking about the other way round). Sometime in life, you must have gained benefit from one of the pahadis, if you deny that you are insane. Admit the freaking truth. Who wrote your recommendations? Who taught you? How much did they get for teaching? How much did you pay? Government money includes those contributed by pahadis too. So stop your freaking nonsense.

I know this email may not mean anything to you. But don't think you have achieved a lot by getting a response this long. I used to side with some of your ideas but now you made me feel ashamed. My only request is try to be humble and it will gain you some respect. And please respect everyone. You cannot gain respect from pahadis if you do not respect them. And gaining respect from all is crucial if you want to help those folks who are facing a tough life.

hari sharma
Ex-BNKS student

This email kind of sums up the gist of the complaints at the two SEBS threads, and it has a name to it - although the said individual and I do not personally know each other - so I have decided to respond to this one.

I feel like I have addressed all these issues many times before in many different forums, and I have also codified the same in the form of a few blog posts, a few diagrams: Budhanilkantha, Sadbhavana, Berea, DFA. No point in repeating. Study the diagrams. This is in your self interest even if you might be a Pahadi, a Bahun. Take a close look at the triangle.

When dealing with the Pahadi/Madhesi issue, I often deal with Madhesis who have internalized the prejudice. You have the Pahadis hammering, and the Madhesis cooperating to sustain the social equilibrium. But then take those same Bahuns/Pahadis to the larger American context, and these people are the Madhesis. You see some of the same mechanisms come to play. Racism is largely internalized. They hit glass walls and ceilings like a bird hitting a window pane.

The Pahadis/Bahuns among you might want to talk a look at this: Hamro Nepal, Latest.

Hamro Nepal is your Sadbhavana in America. You need it as bad as the Madhesis in Nepal. Ever wondered why a country founded on No Taxation Without Representation enforces Taxation Without Representation on you?

Your Many Identities

BBC Nepali Service

केशरबहादुर विष्टसंग-19.04.06
सुशील कोइरालासंग-13.04.06
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पन्ध्रौ़ दिनको विरोध प्रर्दशन-20.04.06
चौधौं दिनको विरोध प्रदर्शन-19.04.06
आम हडतालको तेह्रौं दिन-18.04.06
आम हडतालको बाह्रौं दिन-17.04.06
आम हडतालको एघारौं दिन-16.04.06
आम हडतालको दशौं दिन-15.04.06
आम हडतालको आठौं दिन-13.04.06

Date: Fri, 21 Apr 2006 06:49:38 -0600
From: "Vishwanath P Agrawal"
To: "Paramendra Kumar Bhagat"
Subject: [Fwd: Huge protest rally on Ring Road]

Paramendra ji :

I regularly read your email. I praise what you have been doing for us. I am forwarding this email from my son for your knowledge. Bye.

Looking forward to hearing from you and seeing you someday.


Today, I witnessed the largest rally in my life, comparable only to the Million Man March organized in Washington DC in 1996. It was moving to see so many people on the streets, defying curfew, for a common cause. That takes a lot of guts and commitment!

For a while, it appeared that the police had blocked the rally at Balkhu chowk as the rally tried to cross from Kathmandu into Lalitpur over the Bagmati Bridge. However, the rally broke through and the bridge was instantly filled with protesters. As the rally marched past, the police watched helplessly. The rally took 30 minutes to just cross the bridge!

Let's pray for peace and prosperity in our beloved country.

Take care,

Vishwanath P. Agrawal
Professor of Biochemistry

Director, B. Sc. Biochemistry, Universal Science College, Maiti Devi, Kathmandu, Nepal
Executive Director, Research Laboratory for Agricultural Biotechnology and Biochemistry ( RLABB )
Academician of Royal Nepal Academy of Science and Technology ( RONAST )


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