National

No festive joy for Musahar families in Bishariya

- ABDHESH KUMAR JHA, SAPTAR

Oct 15, 2018-

Dashain, a major Hindu festival, is right around the corner. While most of the Nepali population prepares to celebrate the festival with good food and new clothes, the Musahar people— an impoverished Dalit community— of Bishariya in Rajbiraj Municipality, Saptari, struggle to arrange two square meals for their family.

“We barely manage to get rice, let alone meat. How can we provide new clothes to our children in this condition?,” asked Sanichar Sada , a Musahar. “Every year, Dashain comes as burden to us.”

Kids in the community run around semi-naked in rags because their family cannot afford to get them new clothes.

“We also have a desire to celebrate Dashain with delicious food and new clothes,” said Koshiladevi Sada, a Musahar woman. “But we are in no condition to do that as managing meals every single day is a struggle to us.”

Devi Lal Sada, a Musahar, said the festivals are only for the well-off families.

“Every year, Dashain comes and goes. But for the Musahar people, it’s the same every day,” he added.But what mostly worries the community is the children’s desire during festival season.“Our children, like every other children, want to wear new clothes, play kites and eat to their heart’s content during Dashain,” said Budhani Devi. “We have nothing to give them.”

Musahar people blamed the government of not paying attention to their condition. According to the National Census of 2011, there are 234,490 Musahar people in the country, majority of whom live in Saptari, Siraha, Dhanusha and Morang districts.

Published: 15-10-2018 08:02

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