OPEN LETTER TO BROTHERS AND SISTERS OF NEPAL
This is an open letter to the sisters and brothers of Nepal from an Indian, who value and respect the people of Nepal and their sentiments.
The relationship between any two countries are shaped at two levels. One level is the government to government relationship and the other level is people to people relationship.
In the past, there have been number of occasions, when government between two countries have different view points and have even quarreled . At the same time, people of the same two countries , by and large, have maintained good will for each other.
People to people relationship are generally formed on the basis of traditional value systems, cultural practices and beliefs. It is not uncommon to see marriages taking place between persons belonging to two countries, even as the particular governments have no cordial relationship.
Nepal and India have many things in common with regard to the traditional practices and value systems. Nepal is a country with majority of Hindu population. More than 75% of Indian citizens belong to Hindu religion and Hindus in India have special feelings towards people of Nepal and Nepal as a country. Many Indians think that visits to temples in Nepal atleast once in life time is a must for them and citizens of Nepal also think that they should visit India and it’s temples atleast once.
In these circumstances, it is extremely unfortunate that misunderstanding have erupted between the government of India and government of Nepal at present, for whatever reasons.
Government of Nepal has taken certain avoidable action like unilaterally changing the border map with India, without solving the issue by discussions with spirit of accommodation on both the sides. The Multi-System Operator (MSO), a Nepalese agency that broadcasts foreign TV channels in Nepal, has decided to ban the Indian news channels for their what is termed as falsified and malign reports against Nepal and it’s Prime Minister Oli.
Both India and Nepal have democratic form of governance with the political parties winning majority seats in election forming the government. However, it is known that politicians who form the government in democratic countries by getting popular vote , need not necessarily be the best of people in the respective countries. Often, it is seen that some of the politicians becoming ministers in the democratic countries are not well informed or intelligent persons and a few of them may have even prejudices and pre conceived notions. Such conditions exist in several democratic countries.
The present friction between India and Nepal could be due to the political prejudices and ideological differences of the political leaders running the government. Government sources in India seem to think that the present government in Nepal is leaning towards China due to political prejudices. If this is true, then it is a counter productive move that would not benefit Nepal in any meaningful way.
Government sources in Nepal say that India is trying to destabilse the present government of Nepal to ensure that Nepal would not go under the China trap. If this is true, then it is an undesirable practice.
While the political leaders forming the government in democratic countries will come and go from time to time and running the government in whatever direction they want, large section of the people in India and Nepal certainly remain steadfast about their lofty views and good perspectives about India and Nepal. .
In the case of India and Nepal, whatever the governments of both the countries do, it is absolutely necessary that people of India and Nepal should maintain their good relations and harmony between themselves and ensure that historical relationship between both the countries would not be disturbed by the political manipulations of the politicians remaining in power.
It is high time that the people of India and Nepal should think beyond political rhetorics and should ensure that any move by motivated people to create feeling of animosity and hatred between people of India and Nepal would be defeated.
Certainly, banning Indian news channels in Nepal is not a healthy trend and the news channels in India and Nepal should have free access to both the countries. Let progressive elements in both the countries air their views through the news channels to build cooperation and amity.
Whatever the politicians in power may say or do, the people of India and Nepal have lot to gain by mutual appreciation, cooperation and good will ,both in the short and the long run. Hundreds of years of good will and cooperation should not be allowed to be marred by short sighted politicians.
People of India and Nepal should assert themselves, if politicians in power attempt to spoil the basic relationship between both the countries.
It is necessary that the discerning people in India and Nepal , who understand the importance of healthy relationship with mutual respect, should make their voice heard and force the government in their countries to ensure long standing peace between India and Nepal and to prevent any fundamental change in the dynamics of relationships between both these countries.