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MY NAME IS NOT NEPALI CHOKDA

Essay By: reyab naserah
Non-fiction


IT'S ABOUT HOW OUR PERSPECTIVE OF NORTH EAST INDIANS NEEDS TO CHANGE. PRONTO!


Submitted:Feb 1, 2012    Reads: 61    Comments: 4    Likes: 0   


This book is entirely my opinion.

From first-hand experience, I know what one reads rarely descends to the unconscious level of understanding.

I write this because I have understood what it means to look, think and act differently from others and have the latter consider you to be a special species of queer.

Honestly, since I happen to be such a doubting Thomas, I expect no real change to occur in society as a result of this undertaking.

Resignedly, it's meant to be a light-hearted read, so ' take light .'

*****

For as long as I can remember, I have found the "differently built" inhabitants of the north-eastern part of India to be quite striking, in a good sort of way.

I have lost count of the number of guys I've crushed on and have almost always been in awe of how pretty and delicate their female folk are.

But sadly and ashamedly, I have also made fun of their looks and mannerisms on countless occasions in the distant past , although I am now a changed person, God willing.

I think the change came when I was around 15 or 16 years of age and I started to make friends with those belonging to the north-eastern states.

They were well-behaved, soft-spoken mizo girls and come to think of it, I have never once had an argument with a girl from the north-east.

I read online that people from the 'Seven Sisters' states [although, it's now eight, with the inclusion of Mizoram] don't like to be grouped together as "north eastern" , I have little idea, at the present moment , how to differentiate your case history from those born and brought up in the "mainland", so please forgive my ignorance and bear with me for the remainder of this piece.

The desire for writing a small book on your unhappiness with your ill-treatment as meted out by the people of mainland India started about three months ago, at the end of August , most probably.

I am uncertain about what triggered this enthusiasm but I admit it was probably because I have a flair for writing and thus wanted to be a recognised writer as opposed to an insignificant anyone else who only a few people know of.

However, the last time I called someone 'nepali chokdaa' was on the 19th of September 2008 and at that time I had absolutely no idea that he was going to be the Next Big Thing in my life.

A few months later, my principles intensified and more than ever before, I started correcting and sometimes even scolded people for using terms like 'bahadur' and 'pradhaan' and 'nepaali'.

It was only two days ago that I read that people from The Region don't like the term 'chinky' as well.

Okay.

So no more saying 'chinky' to refer to the people from The Region .

I'll use the term 'almond-eyed' from now onwards and pray that it's alright with you .

As I was saying, this young man became a big part of my life and he inspired me immensely ; to believe in myself and my abilities and also taught me by example, that shit happens in life and we must keep moving ahead, no matter what life throws our way.

In a big way, he is the main inspiration behind this piece ; by 'discovering' him, I realised the potential in me and to a greater extent, the potential in us all.

I have been picked on for most of my life and it was extremely terrifying at times.

People thought of me as a 'tough girl' but I really wasn't.

I could be quite bold and rebellious on the given occasion but a fighter I wasn't and I'm unsure whether much has changed since then.

Finally, some years ago, I had absolutely 'had it' with the bullshit.

I was pissed beyond belief and I was ready to throw all caution to the winds.

It was time to live for me, to unveil a new me; I simply couldn't bear the antagonism any longer.

I believe with all my heart that if I wish to be treated with respect I ought to be handing out the same.

I started reading everything I could online about various suppressed peoples and their problems.

If you don't like something, try your very best to change it.

The people of my country are seriously messed up.

I don't give a damn about what happens elsewhere in the world, okay, let's just start with ourselves and our homes.

You might say that it's human nature to treat others differently, that since we all have different opinions regarding almost everything concerning everything around us, we will tend to act in this manner from time to time.

Fuck Human Nature.

I won't let this continue around me, if I can help it.

I don't care how close you are to me or how deeply I care about you, if you make fun of anyone from The Region in my presence, you WILL get a piece of my mind.

Like I mentioned earlier, this piece is entirely MY opinion.

If you don't like what's in it, burn the fucking book.

A few words to the almond-eyed people of The Region :

Anyone who mistreats you on account of the way you look and sound, does not deserve to be in your presence.

You are most probably going to have the occasional miscreant at the work place.

That probably cannot be avoided.

They're dumb asses so just ignore them.

Remember that a good mood brings good energy and good confidence and a sad mood brings anxiety.

Someone famous once said that nobody can make you feel inferior without your permission.

Or something along those lines.

If only I had chanced upon these words sooner, who knows how different my life would have been today.

Coming back to you and Your today,

I can only get across to you with experiences and a little wisdom that I've been blessed with.

If it doesn't strike a chord with you and if my knowledge and understanding don't sink into your system, I am helpless and you will always remain in the same emotional and mental turmoil that you were trapped by unless YOU decide that Enough Is Enough.

Be the change you desire.

Walk tall, walk proud.

Give the world The Finger because the only opinion that should matter to you is your own.

You alone have to deal with your thoughts and your emotional state.

How did you see Yourself before another person made you feel unloved, unwanted and unimportant?

Your opinion of yourself is the ONLY one that matters !

I think the people of The Region need to settle things in 'their native' before they can even begin to change the way the people of the mainland look at them.

The further back I go in time, the more depressing the situation becomes, even for someone like me, born and raised in north India.

I had no idea that the north- eastern region didn't take part in India's struggle for freedom against her then colonial masters.

As far as I'm concerned, I expect no feelings of national pride from them.

How could I when anyone in their right mind wouldn't accept it as sane?

One shall feel a sense of patriotism only when one has been aware of it , when one has been a part of it or when one understands the cause for which it was undertaken?

If they had no part in it, if they remained disconnected from the movement the entire time, when the government didn't do anything to make them feel comfortable, when they have been ill-treated for decades, when they are made to feel unappreciated which person in their right mind will consider lving under such a banner of 'integration?'

I remember a small part of a dialogue from the hindi movie 'Dil Se':

Sirf dilli Hindustan hai …

Or something along those lines.

I couldn't have said it any better.

We were NEVER one country, one nation, one race to begin with.

You can't wake up one fine morning and tell millions of people across tens of thousands of miles ' from this day forth, you all belong to one country, "ALL INDIANS ARE MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS…."

Dude, what the h?

Everyone swore allegiance to different crowns and kings and chiefs and were almost unaware of each others languages, culture and customs.

Moreover, isn't The Region connected to the mainland by a very small region called the Silliguri Corridor/the Chicken's Neck and isn't only one percent of the border shared with India while a very hearty 99% shared with the rest of South-east Asia?

Why is the north-eastern part of India even a part of India to begin with?

What business does the Indian Government have meddling in their affairs???

Now if only they could stop fighting amongst themselves, I am all in favour of a new country to the east of my country.

That is, if they still want to be independent of India.

My understanding of the matter is pretty simple.

If you call yourself an indian, I will call you an indian.

If you call yourself Assamese, Naga, Manipuri, Mizo, Khasi, Bhutia, Tripuri, , I will call you Assamese, Naga, Manipuri, Mizo, Khasi, Bhutia, Tripuri and

Respectively.

It's an alarming situation, truth be told, and the 'patriotic insurgents' in the area are not helping matters.

Who can say for sure who wants to be a part of what?

Some people may be wanting to remain a part of india but I highly doubt that it is out of any patriotic feelings.

Kaahey ka patriotism bhai, jab desh ko kabhi apnaaya bhee nahi?

And instead of understanding their home situations and co-operating with them and trying to relieve them of their burdens, we people of the mainland only make matters worse for them.

They are away from their loved ones, living among people who not only have no sympathy for their cause but make matters worse for them by treating them like second-class citizens.

No matter what the rest of India is like, each of you nice people has a friend in me.

I won't call you names or giggle at your accent.

I don't believe that all of your female population who live in big cities lead loose, promiscuous lives.

I don't think the jobs that you do best are working in big-brand showrooms as salespeople and cashiers.

Every almond-eyed man who lives on a breathless budget is not good for security purposes alone.

I am extremely proud of the soil you were born on and someday when my security can be guaranteed, I'd beyond-love to visit your entire region and join in with your festivities and mix freely with all of you who look nothing like me, but I consider you to be a part of me and mine if you will have me.

I have less than no clue if the rest of my mainlanders will learn to behave themselves one day, if ever, but you can ALWAYS count on me, God willing.

Thank you for taking the time to read my work.

I hope against hope that my honesty has touched your mind and sunk into your consciousness and that we of the mainland will someday, God willing, deserve the right to call you our brothers and sisters.

May the Almighty have mercy upon all of us, all across this land.

Peace be upon You and Yours .





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