Nepali Times Asian Paints
From The Nepali Press
Nepalis in India



Ever since the state of emergency was declared in Nepal, the number of Maoists in India has increased rapidly, especially in the bordering states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and West Bengal. According to Nepalis resident in India, the Nepal Ekata Samaj-banned by the Indian government-continues to function. Residents complain that they are harassed by both Maoist activists and Indian security forces. More prone to harassment are Nepali migrant workers. Bhakta Lal Hirachan who runs a lodge in Gorakhpur district, India, says, "Previously, thousands of Nepali migrant workers would come seeking jobs. Today, the numbers have dwindled."

Immediately after the visit to India of Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, Hirachan's lodge, patronised by a large number of people from Nepal, was raided twice in the middle of the night. Many Nepali residents like Hirachan told Samacharpatra that the Maoists had created an environment in which normal people trying to make a living were constantly under the suspicion of Indian security forces. While Nepalis living in India for a long period have experienced relatively fewer problems, Nepalis entering India recently in order to escape the murder and violence in Nepal, are getting caught between the security forces and the Maoists. Many have been leaving the bordering Indian states and going inland. As the Maoists wreak havoc in Nepal and then seek refuge in India, the Indian public is beginning to suspect any Nepali of being a Maoist. Children of resident Nepalis being enrolled in schools in India are often looked on with suspicion by the school administration.

According to resident Nepalis, earlier, members of the Nepali Ekata Samaj, an organisation closely affiliated with the Maoists and currently banned, would trouble people for donations. Recently, their activities have decreased. Tilak Kaku, a high-ranking Indian security official from Uttar Pradesh, told Samacharpatra that Indian security officials were prepared to help Nepali residents who suffered any injustice. But like other Indian security officials, he said, "Where are the Maoists in India? The Maoists are in Nepal. If they come here, we can only send them back." Despite this assurance, Nepali residents stress that the Maoists, including leaders and cadres, are seeking refuge in bordering Indian states.


LATEST ISSUE
638
(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)


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