Deepak Shimkhada

Indians who are educated and/or religious don’t disrespect Nepal and/or Nepalis.  Only those who don’t fall into those categories do so.  I can vouch for it because I have lived in India for ten years and have visited most of the states.  I was never bullied or disrespected by any.  Sometimes it’s our own actions that invite disrespect.

Let us not forget that “hatred begets hatred” (Mahatma Gandhi).  Similarly to receive respect we must learn to respect others.  Nepalis have been calling Indians “dhotis” and “khainis” ever since I can remember. If we keep doing that how do we expect them to respect us?  Honestly, we Nepalis are hypocrites.  Let me explain:  We consume everything Indian—from Hindi cinema to music, fashion and various products.  And yet we severely criticize them and even hate them.  I already have written about it, so I don’t want to repeat it here.  This much I want to say:  We should give them respect where it is due, no matter who they are—be it our enemy.

History is proof that Mahatma Gandhi brought the mighty British Empire, where the sun never set, to its knees by boycotting its products.  If we are intent on expressing our displeasure against Indians we could follow Gandhi’s examples.  Are we willing to do what Gandhi did?  Better yet, can we, under our present economic and political situations, afford to do that without creating hardship for the Nepali people?

What baffles me is this.  If we hate Indians why do we eat Indian food?  Why do we serve Indian food in so-called Nepali restaurants?  We practice their religion. Many of us have been educated and trained by them at their colleges and universities.  They have built our highways and hydro projects.  Of course, there are bad apples everywhere.  But we should not put all of them in the same basket and call them dhotis and khainis.  It would only show the narrowness of our minds and put us in a perpetual cycle of hate.  After all, India is our neighbor, and if our relationship with our neighbor is sour, we will have no peace in our homes.

What I wrote may sound pedantic because truth is bitter.  But we have to view things objectively and with an open mind if we are to save humanity.  Only can we change our destiny.