Read a human book series started in Far West Nepal recently. The series began with President of Campaign for Pormotion of Community Paralegalism in Nepal (CPCPN) Mr Prabhakar Bagchand listening to the life story of a so called higher caste man Dan Bahadur Sahi from Dailekh who with his family was working as construction laborer in India. Mr Sahi with his family lived in a make shift tent in freezing cold. The tent had nothing but few utensils and blankets and mats.
Mr Bagchand narrating the story of Mr Sahi and says, this is a story of all migrant laborers in India.I asked him why he had come to India to face such hardship. Mr Sahi said , when your children have to sleep empty stomach in your own country, you will know this hardship means nothing.
“There was no employment opportunity for illiterate man like me back in my motherland. The small piece of land I own is uncultivable. Life only meant breathing. I wander around India like a gypsy with my family to feed them” Mr Sahi said.
After hearing his story I was at loss of words. Does his country exist for him?. He was a so called higher caste man but to me he was a ” Maha Dalit” . Only difference is he does not face untouchability.”
As a so called Dalit I understood, there are non- Dalits whose economic conditions is as bad as Dalits or even worse. If I can empathize with the plight of non- Dalits( so called higher caste) so can, so called higher caste with the sufferings of Dalits. We need to understand that Dalits have been treated as sub humans by even the poorest of high caste. We need to come closer as humans. Then only a compassionate and civilized society can be built. I was going through a natural healing process in the mountains to improve my eye sight but this “Read the Human Book” series opened my eyes made me more humane and considerate Mr Bagchand said.
I thus, decided that every week CPCPN paralegals will take prominent citizens and people from various walks of life to these ordinary poor people whose voice has never been heard. The life stories of these people will be documented. The idea is to empathize with the people in pain and change the mindset of those who are unconcerned about the suffering of fellow human beings, Mr Bagchand said , explaining the objective of the Read the Human Book series.
Humans have reached the Mars, but have we reached our neighbors next of our kin, those shaped after our own image – the homo sapiens ? asked President of CPCPN Mr Prabhakar Bagchand.