Krishna Hari Pushkar
There are accusations against Nepalese Media that Khas dominated media and news agencies are still remained prejudiced towards the Madhes and Madhesis people. A justifiable incident has been observed during the sworn program of newly appointed Ministers of Prachanda’s cabinet on 23rd of August, 2008 at President House of Nepal. In that program most of the newly appointed Ministers of Madhesi Janadhikar Forum (MJF) were sworn into their mother tongue Maithili. However, the majorities propagandists Nepalese Media were frequently reported, the sworn were taken into Hindi by Madhesi ethnic Ministers. Perhaps they wanted to create similar terrible hoo-hahs that were occurred while Vice President Permanendra Jha took sworn into Hindi. However, this time people did not give important to the propaganda of prejudiced Media and news reports.
Now Madhesi people blame to the Khas media men that they have some auto- translatable Hindi version sensor control earphone in their brain which gets automatic active while they appear into any program related to Madhesis fellow. Hence, whatever the languages (Maithili, Bhojpuri or Awadhi) used by Madhesi fellows, the sensor control of reporter’s automatically use to perceive the used languages into Hindi only. Due to this technical problem, the reporters always report through their respective Media that the Madhesi leader only speak and promote Hindi. The prejudiced reporters spared propagandas that Madhesi want to make Nepal as a Sikkim or another state of India by promoting the Hindi language, clothing and Hindi performance in national ceremony. Actually, such claims are totally wrong and it is a consequence of mental disorder of Nepalese prejudiced reporters. Thus, the Nepalese propagandist Media always try to create disorder and battle between Khas and Madhesis people by manipulating such issues. Though, there are no any counter legal actions till now against such propagandists’ Media who spread Maithili version sworn into Hindi, and even more they are keeping continue all types of possible insulations, manipulation and dishonor relating to the issue of Madhes and Madhesis.
Moreover, I do not ignore that some of Madhesis fellows feel more prosperous, prestigious and superior when they present themselves into Hindi version behave and language. Though, it is totally injustice to push all Madhesi people as Hindi friendly. Personally, I am a Madhesi and my mother tongue is Maithili, so I prefer and feel convenient to speak Nepali when I have to speak other than Maithili, it is because Nepali is our national language and better means of communication in Madhes as well as other part of Nepal too. To be honest, nationalization and mainstreaming of Hindi gives bad connotation among Nepalese citizens due to neocolonial grand design of India. Anyway, Madhesis will not agree to lose their mother tongue and promote or accept Hindi as a means of common language of communication in Madhes region at any cost. Moreover, I am also not in favor that Hindi should be established and promoted as second language of Madhesis people. I have read some baseless political claims and manipulated Media reports that Hindi is major means of communication in Madhes and its people, who have other than Nepali mother tongues. It is totally wrong. I and other Madhesis would also prefer to see our own mother tongues such as Maithili, Bhojpuri, Tharu and Awadhi or Nepali etc as means of communication in Madhes. I think we do not have to find or substitute our mother tongues or national languages by Hindi neither we are forced to import it from India. We are better and comfortable enough with our own languages. In addition, there are facts, the Nepalese media use to translate the Maithili, Bhojpuri, Tharu & Awadhi etc as Hindi, so people gets angry and compelled to use some times unpopular language and behavior to oppose and keep separate identity from imposed Khas languages and its culture.
There are also problem in Madhesis part that they get suffered from some anti-Nepali language phobic neurosis. Even common Nepali, Madhesi as well as all other indigenous, tribal etc people love to listen or act the official works, statements, speeches, discussions, behaviors or communications things either in their own mother tongue or national language Nepali. However, some top brass Madhesi leaders use to do it in Hindi, I do know why? No one can understand such anxiety, that why do the Madhesi leaders frequently speak Nepali everywhere including in office, interviews, home, radio program and the place of formal- informal communication, routine life -elsewhere and why do they not like to speak or use their mother tongue or national language Nepali while they appear in formal national events or ceremony or places such as sworn, parliaments etc.
Now it is research question to know that why the Nepalese media use Hindi language card against the Madhes- and Madhesi people and why the Madhesi leaders also use same card against Nepali language or Khas people. Khas claims that Madhesis use Hindi just to please Indian authorities and Madhesis claim Hindi as common language of Madhes. Therefore, the issues are really complex. Hence, the Nepalese media and the Madhesis people have to rethink seriously on the language conflict of Nepal. Otherwise, the language violence will be continuing in forthcoming days, if the both parties do not correct themselves properly. Further, nation should also use proper effort to resolve the language chaos urgently.
(Mr. Pushkar is affiliated with Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of Nepal)