And then there were the Bahuns.
A sect chosen by the Shahs, for the Shahs, but not of the Shahs during the early Shah ethos to be The Priests of the Crazies gathered today in the Valley to demand, what else but equal rights, and also to be classified as an Indigenous Community (I want to know of a Nepali Community that isn’t demanding for this distinct label to be associated with them).
I think the Bahuns had gathered last year also to voice similar concerns – just like many of their counterparts from different other Nepali ethnicities have done. Do these people have certain charters and requirements for their cause and organization? I wonder. Also, one of these days, I’m going to have to find out what this Equal Rights deal is all about.
I was once again left speculating if there were other – man I hate this word like no other – castes in the congregation today. I hope there were at least a few but my skepticism wins right here to cause me to highly doubt it.
This (self-presumed) strictly Bahun event reminded me of the Beauty Pageants that used to be held weekly until December of last year. I think we’re in the off-season right now. Anyway, these Beauty Pageants, if you remember, used to be purely ethnicity based – Miss Sherpa, Miss Tamang, Miss Bahun, Miss Newar, Miss Still-A-Nepali, etc. among other much entertaining Pageants like Miss Air Hostess, Miss Bank Manager, Miss Politician, Miss Traffic Police, Miss Armed Forces, etc. Okay, many of these Misses were of my own making (no, not for that) but you get the idea.
Okay, I get the Workforce based Pageants – kinda cool. But ethnicity based? I don’t know. I mean if this is the only way to connect people to share culture, who am I to oppose? But I sure as hell don’t oppose the economics of it all and the ‘exposure’ it provides to the young and talented Still-A-Nepali ladies of all shapes and sizes. I only wish there were other ways we could come up with where these young ladies could demo their skills.
Thank god for Miss Nepal! The one who got crowned is kinda cute too.
Plus, I’m just a little concerned for the demographic quantity of these Misses – what happens if you run out of Misses someday? Hey, there’s always a chance. Someday, right? Is there a Miss Mixed? Miss Half Bahun Half Magar?
All this gregariousness that we’re getting ourselves into is getting downright dangerous. I’m not saying we’re heading towards segregation of any kind but we can do better. We don’t demand equal rights for all the Nepali people but only for those who identify culturally to our last names. We don’t call upon all Nepali women to participate in our Pageants but only those who have certain last names – bar Miss Nepal. Are Newari women allowed to participate in a Miss Bahun? I doubt it. Was there a single Madhesi demanding equal rights at a Sherpa rally? I doubt it. Prove me wrong and make me proud, my fellow Nepalis.
Could I propose an alternative: a little decentralization in the mix here. So how about doing a Miss Kathmandu? Miss Pokhara? Miss Narayani? Or a Miss Sagarmatha? That way, every Nepali lady can participate and represent the area where she comes from in the big event – Miss Nepal. Okay, put the top 5 Misses from Kathmandu to balance out a potential non-existing Miss Jumla, for instance. Plus, people of all ethnicities from Narayani can demand that the next big State University be located in their zone, etc. [Okay, Narayani may not exist tomorrow but you again, get the drift.]
Let’s come together right now and hit the streets to celebrate us, share and partake in our diverse cultures, and to demand Equal Rights (definition pending) and justice for all Nepalis – last name no bar, political affiliation no bar, gender no bar, color no bar, and religion no bar. If you are in say, Bhadrapur, you may also demand strict border laws in your area .. see? This can really work. There’s a little something to learn from the Miss Nepal Beauty Pageant after all.