The endangered Hayu community, who have been living in Udayapur district for generations, are at risk of extinction with no one to conserve their culture and language.
As per the community leader Jit Bahadur Hayu, the government has been offering them monthly social security allowance of Rs 2,000 per person, but it has not taken any steps to conserve their culture.
Six Hayu households remain at Sirbani village of Katari Municipality-11 in the district these days. Only a handful of them know about their culture and history.
Without numerical strength it is difficult to give continuity to one’s culture, Jit Bahadur said.
“It is particularly hard for us, Hayus, because our culture do not allow marriages outside our own community.”
Over the years, the marriage law of Hayu community has changed, with young men and women choosing partners from outside their community. But it is not just modern values adopted by the young people in the community that affected this change. The dwindling Hayu population also made it tough for the young men and women of the community to find suitable partners, forcing them to look outside their community.
“Because we are so few in number, we are having difficulty conducting our rituals during birth, marriage and death,” said Annat Hayu.
Besides Udayapur, the Hayu people are also found in Siraha, Bhojpur, Sindhuli, Kavre and Okhaldhunga, and they too face the danger of extinction.
According to the National Census of 2011, there are 2,925 Hayu people in the country.
Deepak Budathoki, the ward chairman of Katari Municipality-11, said the municipal office was aware of the threat faced by the Hayu people.
“The municipality has started various programmes to conserve the language, culture and tradition of Hayu people,” he added.Published: 2018-09-04 07:36:46