The event was a panel discussion about the ongoing Terai/ Madhesh movement where the participants and panels interacted on the issue. This program is organized by Association of Youth Organizations Nepal (AYON) in collaboration with Nepal Policy Center.
The panelists of the program were Dr. Bhaskar Gautam (Researcher/ Martin Chautari), Tula Narayan Shah (Activist/ Nepal Madhesh Foundation) and Khusee Tharu (Federalism Expert). Mr. Brabim Kumar K.C. acted as the Moderator of the session.
The total of 61 participants was present in the program among which 21 were female and rest 40 was male. The participants made representation from all the sectors namely from educational, non-profit organizations, media personnel and so on.
Speaking at the program Federalism Expert, Khusee Tharu said Federalism is identity sensitive. He focused on the interests of the common people and pointed that the government needs to address the issue. He focused that the Tharu community needs to be organised in order to give proper shape to the movement. Furthermore he also indicated that the solution should be long term orientated.
Likewise Tula Narayan Shah added the dimensions of “Politics of Demography”. He indicated the demographically empowered group has the winning situation. However the group which faces the power enforcement and loss becomes dominating in the conflict situation referring to agitating group which seems to be in rise facing the causalities to death among their group.
Dr. Bhaskar Gautam reflected the current scenario attaching the strings with the movements in the past and he urged the audience to learn from the past. He said the movement led by Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King is the only peaceful movements which were successful in meeting their goals. He also said that the demands of the protestor will increase day by day as it prolongs. So the government needs to address the sentiments of the people as soon as possible. Furthermore he said that the movement is shifting to be more ethnical based to claim the resources.
Speaking from the audience Brij Mohan, Vice President of AYON said we need to identify our own responsibilities first and then make our road map depending upon that so that we can seek the demands we have raised as the Nepalese citizen.
Subin Mulmi, advocate raised concern over the rights of the women which doesn’t seem to be in priority of the Madhesh Movement asking why it doesn’t become concern of the male dominated society. Supporting to which Dr. Gautam added that the Feminism isn’t the issue of women only and it should be addressed by all.
The next day on 12th September, Republica printed news with title, “Youth Dialogue bridging the gap of unawareness”. It quoted Dr. Gautam as saying,” No matter how many provinces we divide our country in, we won’t solve our problems if we do not ponder upon the principle behind it. Right now, many of our leaders are busy defending the quantity regarding federalism, but we need to work on understanding and defending the principle behind the decision.”
The whole interaction gave the clear vision to all participants on madhesh movement, its background and consequences. It also shaped the views as how it should pave its way forward and address what is more needed and not diverting to anything which hurts the essence towards acceptance of constitution by any individual representing any community of the nation.