On History, Present and the Mahendra Nationalism

Time is very important. It is a dimension in itself to everything. In history- time is the only dimension.

The 1940s

Let’s look at the 1940s. In 1939, the Chinese people gained control of their country after driving out the Japanese. Japan and Germany were the two most important forces of the second world war the coming decade was to see. In India, freedom fighters were in negotiations with both German and Japanese rulers in order to form an alliance to defeat the occupying British forces. The British and Germans were enemies. After the second world war ended, a big dent was formed in the economies of countries like Britain, Germany and Japan. The British left the subcontinent.

In Nepal, we tried our own things too. Although we were not being ruled by foreign occupying forces, the Rana rulers would have never been able to rule the way they did without the support and recognition of the British. The Ranas supplied Nepalese soldiers to fight from the British side during the world war and they also helped defend the British colony in events like the Lucknow Sepoy Mutiny. So, when the British left, the Ranas too had to go. We must thank our democratic and communist leaders of that time, who had participated in the Indian Independence movement and made friends with India’s leaders- it’s because of them that we continued to exist as independent country and enjoy a change of scheme no later than it was enjoyed by people in neighboring countries.

The 1990s

Let’s look at 1990s now. The year 1990 was a year after the Berlin wall was brought down- described as one of the most important events in modern world history. At around the same time, the collapse of the superpower Soviet Union ended the bitter cold-war and constant threats of two world-powers destroying the world in their tussle that included an arms and nuclear showdown. That was also the time when the World Wide Web (the internet as we know it) was developed- this technology would go on to change the world in the next twenty years

In Nepal, after 1990 we curtailed the powers of our monarch and decided we’d also feel the winds of change in our faces. A few years ago, we decided we needed more and got what we wanted too.

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What Taslima Nasreen thinks does not matter

Disclaimer: If your age is not suitable to consume adult jokes and abuses, please do not read this post. Do not recommend this post to those people.

Yesterday, Taslima Nasreen was scheduled to address a literary program in Kathmandu, Nepal. That’s when she tweeted,”My nepali friends, I missed my flight to go to Kathmandu today. I forgot to bring my passport as I didn’t consider Nepal a foreign country.”

It is the hallmark of South Asian population to be hypocritical. We are not comfortable with critical thinking. As long as somebody criticizes Islam, Hindus appreciate the “intellect” of that person, and start throwing stones as soon as the same “open-minded” person says something slightly unconventional about Hinduism. In Nepal, we also love people who criticize what we don’t like and start calling names as soon as somebody drops hints of being critical of our own prejudices. People of small countries have big egos. People of poor regions have rich prejudices. What Taslima Nasreen has faced for almost two-decades is a representative of this psychological trait we South Asians share.

This has been showed many times by the people of Nepal, India, Bangladesh and so on. Yesterday, after Nasreen’s tweet, there was a flurry of replies saying “how dare she not know about Nepal being an independent country.” But there were some tweets like this (by Editor Gunaraj Luitel) that showed agreement and sympathy to what Nasreen had said. I sent a few tweets too (more on that later) and moved on to other issues. Today morning, I found out that one twitter user (link might contain profanity) with no follower and no tweet used some foul words against Nasreen, citing which the writer decided to cancel her trip to Nepal (contains profanity). There were also some stupid reactions by news outlets like this which displayed their inferiority complex by writing what they wanted to hear: “she did not carry her passport thinking Nepal was part of India.”

In all this, I have a few thoughts I would like us to ponder about:

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