Ethnic Conflict in Nepal
Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies
April 1, 2011
The IUP Journal of International Relations, Vol. V, No. 2, pp. 22-40, April 2011
In this paper I would like to draw attention to the ongoing serious ethnic conflict in Nepal. An ‘ethnic conflict’ is a dispute about important political, economic, social, cultural or territorial issues between two or more ethnic communities. Some ethnic conflicts involve little or no violence. The violence, in this case, was initiated not by either party to the civil war but by groups fighting on behalf of those who profess a Madhesi ethnicity. These groups targeted both the state and the Maoists, polarizing Terai citizens along ethnic issues that were largely unaddressed during the civil war. At present, the Madhesh part of Nepal is in a chaotic situation. The major groups leading the movement belong to Madhesi community who are multiparty, multiethnic, multireligious, multicaste, multilingual, multigeographical and so on. All demand an equal treatment regarding issues such as caste, religion, or any other social, political or economic values. Apart from the Madhesi ethnic group, other scheduled and deprived groups have also been supporting and expressing their solidarity to this movement, asking the government to fulfill similar demands. The major demands of the conflicting groups seem to be rational and legitimate.
Date posted: January 14, 2012
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