For years, in Lahan, tension arises between the superior and the inferiors when ‘Dalits’ refuse to continue collect carcass. They are collectively banned from using public water resources, buy or sell anything in the local market and from using the local road! In 2004, in one incident 60 houses in a single village were burnt, all ‘Dalits’! The same year, hundreds were beaten in the center of a town when they collectively tried to enter a temple in Chitwan. Even today, the Royal army and the police refuse to enroll them in high ranking officers and limit them to the more vulnerable low ranks.
Political parties and their allies, present and past governments and even the royal palace have expressed their grave concern towards such inhumane treatment against the ‘untouchables’ every now and then, but unfortunately only in papers and announcements.
In 2004, the Supreme Court ordered the government to make appropriate laws to curb untouchability (LANCAU v. HMG) but in the absence of the popular will and an executive based on an elected legislative, laws have not been drafted. The ‘ordinance’ custom of the present rule does not seem to entertain this fact as well. A King backed up by an army can formulate any rules but lacks public support. The Supreme Court, the only legitimate authority, does not have an army to execute its orders but people follow its decisions because they respect the institution and its independent authority. A full democratic government has the first responsibility to adopt the Supreme Court’s decision to make law to curb untouchability. Social Engineering should not be late anymore.
Therefore, untouchability, one of the primary notions behind the ongoing conflict, needs to be uprooted without hesitation and without any reservation. In the 21st century, where we witness the human civilization’s extreme liberty in the other parts of the world, it’s a shame that we still preserve baseless barbaric culture of fostering untouchability practice. As one of the factors for ending the war, social saturation and absolute equality are inevitable. Law can be used to draw a line, to provide justice to those who have faced atrocities since centuries and to allot consequences for those who fail to respect other human. Policies have to be adopted so that exclusion of poor ‘Dalit’ children from attending public schools comes to an end, followed by numerous others. No government authority should be allowed to establish a caste system or even indirectly support or be silent and blind regarding all atrocities going on. Affirmative action should be strictly opted as remedy for social justice and for desegregation. The US history of severe racial discrimination and application of affirmative action through leading cases can be taken in account as an example to pave our path towards absolute equality. The culture of power as tool of the superiors alone must come to and end and inferiors should be provided equal access.
In the pursuit of social equality, the job should not be just to punish every individual who discriminate against another but to set up such rules and mechanism that prohibit unsocial unjustifiable pattern strictly and end the present conflict.