The Terai violence for the sake of violence

(Old article. Archived from 2015).”Pirnu! Katnu! Marnu!” was the slogan that “Tapasvi” Bomjon used ordering the attacks on innocent people caught by surprise. Pirnu! Katnu!Marnu! (Beat!Cut!Kill!) seems to be the factual slogan of many violent protests in the Terai these days. No mercy with “enemies” who are actually innocent…

The lynching to death of an injured APF soldier is just something that crosses all limits of a political fair play. It starts to be clear to everyone that the so-called “political clashes” or “protests” in the Terai are very far from actual ‘politics’ (as was the original meaning of this word in Ancient Greece) and much nearer to criminality. Locking the Madeshi and Tharu communities, together with the government forces, into an endless cycle of violence. On both sides there are mourners and revengers.

Featured photo: My Republica


PIRNU! KATNU! MARNU! – IN 2012 AND NOW

When Ram Bahadur Bomjon had been kidnapping human beings (usually his own admirers) in the past 8 years, beating them to blood and torturing them inhumanly for months many people could not understand why would he do such things, as there was not possible to find any justifiable reason for his cruel brutality. In the lack of a real reason, many people even tried to convince themselves, that all those psychopathic deeds leaving behind people with broken bones, bloody wound and an all-life trauma, could not have happened. (See more: The Ram Bahadur Bomjon Controversy, The bloody violence in Halkhoriya)

sep 2 attack 4Above: snapshot from the YouTube video “Sathaniya bich Jhadap” showing a one-minute questioning of Bomjon by APF and media about why did he kidnap and beat to blood five men on 2 Sep, 2015 in his Halkhoriya compound. The men had been his own devotees from the surrounding villages. Understandingly, in Nepal even this was not enough for the police, law or state authorities to file a case against the notorious attacker, witch-hunter and torturer of more than 40 victims.

“Too bad to be true” is a psychological phenomena, when our mind refuses to accept proved and witnessed, but indigestible and extremely inhuman events to be true… “It is just so extreme that I cannot believe it”, we often think. This is one reason why he was surfing untouched through Nepalese social norms and laws over the years, even if these are very far from a European or American standard. Yet, receiving political support, he could have established this trend in Nepal, infusing society and leaders with the “new culture” of ‘everything is allowed when fighting for the sake of fighting’.

Without any sense (his victims not knowing the reason why he harmed them so much, until this day!), Bomjon had sown hatred and revenge, and provoked witch-hunts against scores of innocent people, mostly his followers and devotees serving him. In the name of “no mercy”, everything was allowed to his brutal attendants Tom Tarnowski (Dorje), Darshan Limbu, Bal Hari Rai, Molam lama Magar, etc. when it came to expressions of hatred against his caught-in-surprise victims.

Ram Bomjon’s slogan had been repeated by his attack-assistants in Halkkhoriya, and spread over to Piluwa, Simra, Ratanpuri, Nijgadh in 2011. “PIRNU! KATNU! MARNU!” repeated Bomjon’s Tamang followers when describing his brutal attacks on people, confusingly justifying him that “he surely knows why he acted like that”…Pirnu means “beat her/him!”, katnu “cut her/him!” and marnu “kill her/him!”. This was the practical implementation of Bomjon’s hypocritical “Maitri Dharma”, apart from the crowded “blessing programs”.

VIOLENCE FOR THE SAKE OF VIOLENCE

The New Dharma of Pirnu-Katnu-Marnu seems to be successfully spread in Nepal in the last month, and not surprisingly strongly rooted in the Terai districts where the “Maitriya Guru Maha Sambodhi” (as his worshippers call him) had been born and “meditating”. We can see the results in current Nepal, yet the degradation of morality had started already during 2012, and got a ‘green light’ by politicians in 2014.

Today another inhuman atrocity had been committed by the protesting Madeshi people of the Terai in Mahottari. My Republica explains the extreme brutality of killing an injured APF (Armed Police Forces) soldier, right after being released from the hospital. He was NOT deployed in the clashes, his only fault was that he rode a bicycle home…

mahottari burnt ambulance sep 11_2The above photo shows the torched ambulance car, attacked by Madeshi agitators, from which APF soldier in civil tried to escape, but weakened by his wounds and loss of blood, could not make it far, and had been lynched to death by the mob. Photo from My Republica .

Yes, the Armed Police Forces are those blue-uniformed unfortunate guys whom we had seen deployed so many times as naively humble bodyguards of “Tapasvi Bomjon”! They used to queue up for Bomjon’s blessing and protect him from journalists and eventually from law. They did what they had been ordered to do. They had been never ordered to protect Bomjon’s victims from him, sadly.

These very APF army-men had been also the great heroes who bravely arrived to earthquake-hit areas even when the land was still trembling from aftershocks, and had saved numerous human lives! They are the ones deployed when landslides and floods hit the country, but also those who are checking cars and trucks for smuggled goods (widespread in the Terai, due to the border areas with India) on the checkpoints. They are not good or bad: they are doing what they are ordered to do.

police queue dsAbove: APF staff lining up to get blessed by Ram Bahadur Bomjon in Bara District’s Halkhoriya Jungle, in 2010. Many Terai units of APF had been regularly involved in searching for Bomjon after his alleged “disappearances”, protecting him in his alleged “meditation” and during his alleged “blessing programs”,which had been often connected with beatings and tortures of his kidnapped victims. It is nearly sure that APF was doing this only unknowingly and following orders. Bomjon’s famous rich Bara District supporter JS Waiba of Piluwa/Kathmandu has a son who is an APF officer in Piluwa’s army base, and the husband of his sister Rajkumari living in Piluwa, near Halkhoriya, is an APF soldier as well. During the 2012 attack on 5 journalists who came to inquire about the disappeared European tourist(whom Bomjon had been holding captive three months) APF staff did not provide them any protection though, watching how Bomjon’s attendants were hitting them and breaking their equipment. Sadly, sometimes APF cannot protect the law, when the order above is to protect the criminals…

sep 2 attackAbove photo: APF soldiers are “questioning” Bomjon after he again kidnapped and attacked five men (all his own devotees) on 2 Sep, 2015 in Halkhoriya. If one knows the realities of Nepal,soon understands that this was just a theater for the public, as APF soldiers are not police and cannot replace criminal police, neither can do criminal investigation. The fact is that criminal police was not interested in the repeated case of violent attacks by ‘Buddha Boy’ and his attendants. Many times but people turn to APF in the sake of quick action to protect the law.

TOO MANY ANGRY MEN IN MADESH

Yet the brutality how Madeshi men attacked APF soldier Vishwokarma, is shocking. What are these angry men fighting for at all? By the means which they are using, they are destroying that very purpose, which they are calling as a rightful cause of having a federal, autonomous Tharu-Madeshi state inside the already tiny Nepal. What is “rightful” in a state which is accepting shooting a two-years old baby and lynching an injured soldier to death, spearing other policemen and trying to burn five of them alive? Yes, in wars, humanness is losing its sense. Attacks, killings are never humane. But wait a moment: why should a “political protest” actually lose all its limits and become a war, with the blind aim to harm, attack and kill?

The Terai region is overwhelmed with an epidemic of senseless anger and hatred, which had accumulated over decades, taking different forms and masks, sometimes looking like Maoist, sometimes like caste-based, sometimes political. The Madeshi/Tharu problem is none of these. In fact one does not have to be a Tharu or Madeshi, to “get the vibe”: it is simply there, and often the Pahadi Tamang or other-caste settlers are the ones who pick it up and act it out.The dark cloud which covers the minds and hearts of many Terai men, prompting their bodies to act out brutal violence against the weaker ones who cannot defend themselves, is not caste-based. This cloud of ethical dullness had been around there for years.

The main problem in the Terai is that violence, criminality, rapes of minors, witch-huntings had been tolerated by the politicians, police and society for long years. This tolerance sent a wrong signal to a big number of Terai men, that this it just normal to harm human beings if one needs to show up or satisfy some desire. False gurus who had been using such inhuman means without any sense, had not been facing any problem, due to bribes and contacts with politicians. According to statistical data the Terai is the most criminal area of Nepal, and the sexual cruelties of that region against children and women fill the statistics. It is not that there are no good, honest and religious people in the southern belt: but they are forced to stay silent and have not much of a say, when controlled by mafia leaders and an hegemony of authorities. The non-violent residents of the Terai live in fear from retaliation, if they show dissatisfaction with the violent men. The government had been neglecting the situation in the “wild Terai” (as many hill-people, “Pahadis” call it), and what happened now is just a natural explosion of all this.

To see that the above is not just empty moralizing, but a direct connection between inhumane violence against women and girls and te inhumane violence between Madeshi protesters and security forces, one can find many proofs in recent news about Mahottari (the very same district where the APF soldier had been lynched on 11 Sep):

July 9: A five-year-old girl has been raped by a teenager in Sarpallo VDC of Mohattari

May 11: A 15-year-old girl has fallen prey to rapists at Parikauli Phulhatta in Mahottari district  (article taken down from the My Republica page)

The current political clashes are just another way to ventilate a mysterious desire for violence among some Terai’s Madeshi men, against the weaker ones, against those who cannot protect themselves, and a diabolic satisfaction from this. Lynching of injured soldiers in civil is never a justified political means! 

WHAT WENT WRONG AND WHEN?

The Terai is but also a lovely and peaceful storehouse of Nepal’s most beautiful  jungles and animals. Chitwan and Bardiya National Parks are also Terai. Lumbini, Buddha’s birthplace, is Terai. The ancient Tharu villages with their ancient culture, decorated clay houses, a clean and ecologic lifestyle, had been also spread on the Terai. Crops yield 4 times in the rich Terai land. Migrants had been pouring to the Terai because of its richness, from the Nepali hills but also India. Yet the rich life created a peaceful coexistence of all different nationalities and castes. So what went wrong?

tharu asianart dotcom

Above image: the ancient Tharu nation of the Terai has an amazing culture, beautiful decorated fully ecological houses and household utensils, the cleanest yards in all Nepal. It would be a pity if, because of the spread of Madeshi-Tharu aggressivity, many people see them negatively. Tharus are not Madeshis, they have a different culture, but they had joined their political protest recently. Source: Tharu.asianart.com

A dark cloud had been sown in Nepal’s Halkhoriya Jungle in 2012 by a man celebrated all-over Nepal as the “new buddha”, when misusing the devotion of his followers, he turned them against randomly picked up other followers, gossiping them over extended periods of time about being “witches” or “disturbers of his meditation”, eventually “spies”. This seed of violence sown by Ram Bahadur Bomjon had been “watered” soon then by the blood of his beaten and tortured victims, more than 40 people, whom his bewildered Sangha had “punished” for things they have never done…

The specialty of “Tapasvi” was always to involve a large crowd of his followers in the kidnapping, beating and holding captive of his victims, parading the injured people in front of them for days and weeks.

By this he had forced the Tamang and foreign devotees to collectively participate in his brutality, to see the blood pouring from his victims, hear their weeping and begging for mercy, see their ruined bodies after prolonged tortures. It is shocking that no child-protection charity ever criticized Bomjon involving even his small child-monks in the bloody violence in Halkhoriya in Sep 2, 2014, who are seen surrounding him and watching the beaten men bleeding in front of the camera... (see below)

monk children sep2 2014 bloody

 

But Andrea Good, in her commentary under a critical article about Bomjon’s brutality on the Irregular Times’ discussion, had explained this daring openness in criminal harm to people by Ram Bomjon as not being afraid to “punish” people publicly and take responsibility for it. (The reality is, that it cost regular huge bribes for police and lawyers to actually sneak out of responsibility after such public tortures and beatings of his victims). Yet not many people had been asking, why did Bomjon need to involve as many of his devotees as possible, in the beatings and tortures of their former friends and family members?

The goal is to DESENSITIZE a large crowd of Nepalese and foreigners towards seeing the suffering of human beings, to harden their hearts when faced with blood and broken bones of the victims, when assisting in brutal beatings with massive sticks or prolonged tortures and sexual abuse. Bomjon is gradually working on PARALYZING CONSCIENCE and humane feelings in his worshippers, whom he forces to assist or witness the beatings, in rapes and prolonged torture of his captives. Some of them he forces to join him in secret meetings with girlfriends, as had been recently revealed on Dharma-sangha.com (closed down in 2017, archived at https://dharmasangharchive.wordpress.com/ ) . As we could see in the developments inside Bomjon’s own Sangha, online forums and the crowds of his Nepalese followers, his aim to “educate” people to an approach of a cold-blooded cruelty against other human beings, had been fulfilled successfully…

Bomjon had dozens of complices and hundreds of witnesses of his inhuman cruelties. Yet he and his “sangha” had never faced prosecution, had been never called for responsibility for the dark deeds. He and his wide group of followers had created a precedent in Nepal, and obviously, especially in the Terai, where he was born and where he established his “Maitri Dharma” based on “Pirnu!Katnu!Marnu!”. Terai authorities had been closing their eyes before rapes, witch-huntings, violence, tortures for about 8 years, all done in the name of religion.

Bomjon had been “blessing” (touching the heads) of tens of thousands of – largely Terai! – residents! It was not unusual to see crowds of local (Terai) Madeshi men and women, easily distinguishable from “Paharis”, queuing up to Bomjon to get the “magic touch”. During the 2011 May-June Mahadarshan event, allegedly celebrating the “end” of his “6-years long Tapasya”, a daily amount of estimated 4-10 000 devotees daily had been lining up for his touch, during a 15-day long program. (The writer of this article is a witness to this claim).

So where is that miraculous effect of being touched by a “living Buddha” as many consider Bomjon to be? Should it be not visible and tangible already, in some ways? For example, when Gautama Buddha blessed people who had been living sinful lives before meeting him, most of them converted immediately and started to live a peaceful, harmless and ethical spiritual life… Padmasambhava is said to have purified “negative forces” and bring peace and happiness to all, when he was invited by a Tibetan king. So did we see anything like that among the hundreds of thousands of Nepalese touched by Bomjon during his “blessing programs” in Halkhoriya, Ratanpuri, as well as for example Chitwan’s Rampur? Did those thousands of Terai residents change for better people? More peace-loving, God-abiding, moral, compassionate? Just let us look at the situation in Bara District, neighbouring Parsa and Rautahat districts!

tharu bestAbove image: Tharu traditional dress. Thaurshave such a valuable cultural heritage, why should they stain it with violence?

Searching for any sign of an actual improvement of society, nature or dharma in Bomjon’s blessing-places and among his blessed ones, we can never find a single such proof. But people have positive prejudice, they are refusing to admit that Ram Bomjon’s influence on the Terai is simply catastrophic. That the ethical/moral standard of society had actually did not improve by his alleged “meditation”, but degraded, that sexual violence against child-girls became a regular event, and recently even shooting a small baby and lynching an injured policeman in civil clothes became normal and an accepted means of “political struggle”! But what about the rest of the Tharus and Madeshis? They also became insensitized towards brutality against other human beings…?

DESTRUCTION  AT ANY PRICE

If we watch more carefully the “political clashes” between Madeshi “agitators” and Government forces (police, army and APF), we recognize soon that it is not about any goal anymore. What goal could justify shootings and lynchings? Which goal is so burning that it needs to burn human beings alive? This is not to judge that Madeshis are the bad guys and police the good guys. The black cloud of self-destruction is hanging in the dusty hot Terai air, and both sides are tempted, seduced, provoked to act as we imagine only demons in horror films could be able to act.

In the lack of an individual ethical standard and a morally developed society which would disapprove such inhuman acts (under any justification!), the down-pulling force of the hatred and violence inserted by the “dark guru in a white robe” has a sweeping power above Madeshis and security forces alike.

The Nepalese leadership is acting unwisely, when thinking that by making the suppression stronger and more professional, they would eventually solve the tension. Refusing to understand the core of the tension, fortifying security forces is not a solution. Madeshis and Tharus would be possibly temporarily subdued and scared, but is that a democratic atmosphere? Do scared and oppressed voters elect those who oppress them? And how long such “peace before the storm” could last again?

Yet what these aggressive Madeshi men are doing is also self-destructive. They had long ago forgotten what they actually wanted in the first place… Was it a  few districts making up a federal Madeshi state? Or was it the whole Terai-belt from East (Jhapa District) to West (Kanchanpur)? Eventually three separate Madesh-states? Did they make any economic, social etc. research about the outcome of such a separation? Would the Madeshi nation become happier? Would the fields yield more rice? I don’t think that any of those young teenagers or fat political figures who gather to throw stones at just anything and anyone, lynch just anyone and burn just anything, know what they are fighting for. Will it be a more democratic, more humane, more prosperous Tharuhat/Tharuwan, then the little bigger current united Nepal?

They don’t know anymore what are they angry for. They just know one thing: they wish to create a chaos, fear, dramatic spectacle, to see blood and pain. Their sons had been shot and injured in previous clashes. So they want revenge… The political goals had faded behind the emotions of revenge. And I it is questionable if policemen and APF are much better equipped to control their own revenge for those lynched to death by the agitating mobs.

SO WHAT CAN STOP THE CYCLE OF HATRED?

It starts to be clear to everyone that the so-called “political clashes” or “protests” in the Terai are very far from actual ‘politics’ (as is its original definition in Ancient Greece) and much nearer to brutal criminality, violence for the sake of violence, hatred for the sake of hatred, enlocking a nationality of Nepal with its government into an endless cycle of revenge. Is there a way to step out?

If the leaders of Nepal start to look for the seed with an intelligent understanding, in respect to the tradition of spirituality in the land under the Himalayas, they will be able to find the key which would stop the current bloodshed. But that would need to abandon the practice of bribes, to start to look at the impunity enjoyed by dark mafia leaders and their protected “gurus” , to stop sexual crimes against women and children, barbaric witch-accusations against innocent women, to punish pseudo-religious violence, kidnapping, tortures done in total agreement of those authorities who had to protect society from such crimes. The cancer of destruction in the Terai is not a political topic. It is about criminality and the lack of ethical, humane feelings towards the weaker and helpless ones: mostly women and children. Repeatedly lynching an injured APF soldier, after being released from hospital, is just another expression of the crime against those who cannot defend themselves, by mobs of strong men.

Behind such cruelty there is the same psychology like behind the so widespread gang-rapes in the area, rapes and murders of babies, witch-accusations against elderly ladies ending with torture or murder. Nepalis in the Terai, and especially the patriotic and chauvinist men, should be explained that they have no automatic right to harm the bodies of human beings who are physically weaker or in their mercy! A civilized society does not tolerate such barbaric behavior to the weaker ones.

When leaders and security forces were reluctant to punish such “small” crimes properly, because the weak and helpless women and children were not a reason for them to become mobilized, they had actually allowed the behemoth of inhumaness to grow in society, until it grew above their heads.  To stop it become a giant problem, leaders and their forces should return to implementing law, punish all criminals, even if they pay more than the victims, start to take the suffering of the weaker ones seriously.

And yes, in Bara District’s Halkhoriya as well…

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One thought on “The Terai violence for the sake of violence

  1. Pingback: Oregon: first Maitri Puja, then shooting | The Halkhoria Times

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