The Plight of Professional Nepalese Social Worker
The distinction between Nepalese
Hello people, back with a little piece of writing on the general scenario of the country. The border blocked and the fuel crisis still remains the same. The condition is worsening. Motorbikes and cars stay outside the fuel station for 2-3 nights in hope of getting limited liters of petrol. Nowadays we can see people with cooking gas cylinders outside gas stations making a long queue waiting for the gas to come. People cook in the alternative ways on electrical pots, on fire. The fuel crisis is creating inflation. The price of every product is rising. There is indication that the food product and other materials will be out of stock in the country soon. People have started working on keeping the safety stock of food and medicines already.
However during these hard times there are some things that are heading in the right direction. China has shown interest in helping Nepal and has even transported some fuel from the Northern Borders. Nepalese politics itself has spent the last month in creating a stable government by making it as inclusive as possible. Nepal also got its second president as a federal democratic republic country, who is also the first female president of Nepal.
While the country was forming a new government, I was spending 15 days in a camp in Kharelthok, in Kavre district. It is one of the districts that was greatly hit by the earthquake and it’s in two-hour drive from Kathmandu. The past 15 days was quite amazing and a very great experience. We started off with a survey in the local village and we could see that though being very near to the capital city, Kharelthok was quite rural. The major composition of the society were the children below 15 and elderly people. All other youths were out, either as taxi drivers in Kathmandu or had been out of the country for foreign employment. This lacked the village with the labor force limiting its development even in the basic needs like transportation and communication.
Though there is much happening in the country in the national level, this little village seemed completely unaffected and ignorant about all the big issues of blockade, the crisis, the change in the government and so on. The daily life in Kavre has people in the fields working for their daily food. Being a hilly area, there are no proper roads so fuel crisis does not take their attention. And since they always cook with firewood the gas shortage is not really a problem to them. And the blockade, and the new government, the president being female all these seemed to be not a topic worth talking about. It had neither affected them positively and they have no hope that it will ever affect them.
This shows the presence of a wide range of people with wide range of thinking and opinion in our country. Where the city people are having very hard time to cooperate with the crisis and linking it with the political news every second, there are places and people who neither care to know about the present happenings or get affected by it.
It is a very sad thing to figure out the overall scenario from this comparison. Government of the country is such a form that should and must take care of and cooperate the issues of all the people in the country’s be it big or small, and should have power to influence all the people – be it big or small. The concern of many other villages till now is to manage their two times food for the day from their hard-worked agriculture. They do not have big hopes and aspirations from the country and the leaders. It would be so amazing if we and our new government could take first step from helping these sectors of the society.
What I could do from my side
Before we start using #backoffIndia as our status, there are a few things we need understand first:
- Are we mature enough to self sustain? Almost all the products that we consume are either Indian or come to Nepal through the route of India.
- “No petrol No problem” I think is a fake stance. We might sustain a few weeks, even months. But no one can deny that we are totally dependent on fuel. I don’t think people can take patients to hospital on a bicycle neither will the vegetable reach the market on the back of a rickshaw.
- Even if we all agree to use bicycle. There are 5 million people only in Kathmandu. I don’t see a single industry which can produce cycles enough for us all.
- Let us closely analyze whose fault it really is:
- All our prime minister right after being chaired as the PM gets into the flight to Delhi.
- Almost all representatives of political parties go to the Indian Ambassador before elections so that they can get funds to promote their party.
- We have a long history of our political leaders gaining favors from India. Like for example a lot of our political leaders like Ranas and the Koiralas got a lot of help from India during the establishment of democracy.
- So if the politicians are to be blamed then we Nepalese share the equal responsibility of whatever is happening today because:
- We cry, shout and protest only when there is crisis. Other times we support our politicians and allow them to create this dependency syndrome of Nepal to India. Today when there is “No Petrol” in our tanks and “No Food” in our refrigerators only then we hate India.
- What could we do?
- “Bhai Fute Gawar Lute”. When brothers fight, outsiders take full advantage. This is the exact thing that’s happening in Nepal. When our Madhesi brothers and sisters are getting more support from India and Nepal doesn’t care about them, it’s natural for them to tilt towards them. Nepalese politicians instead of partying in the occasion of New Constitution could actually go to Madhesi people and may be tried and negotiate their needs.
- I believe it’s a stupid idea to say that Nepal can seek support from China when India behaves this way. We do not want to create a complete new sequence of dependency syndrome that to with the world largest communist economy.
- Lastly, media is a great source of spreading the news. Telling the world what is happening in Nepal is the current requirement. I believe cutting the Indian Channel in Nepalese television is not a sustainable idea. We do not want to build this kind of sentiment between Nepal and India.
Finally, I believe what we want is a fully understood, functional and sustainable political and trade relationship between Nepal and India. What we want is India to STOP manipulating our people, interfering in our political system and trying to make decisions for Nepal. For this creating a peaceful situation here and abroad is the responsibility of the leaders and pressurizing the leaders through articles, news and media is the responsibility of the Nepalese.
Challenges as being an academic social worker
Before writing down the challenges as being an academic social worker I had to talk about two social work principles together respectively i.e. Principle of acceptance and principle of non-judgmental attitude.
Yes, I am that social worker who used to distinguish Madeshi people as “Bhaiya” because their skin is black and they are doing all the dirty job or street based jobs. I am the same social worker who didn’t care whether the rights for differently able people should be given or not. I also used to judge, analyze people based on the how they look like and how they function. I was simply a self-centered, egoistic, aggressive person and may be that was my part of socialization and affect of my environment. I truly accept my past and what I was. But even at that time, there was an empathetic person hiding somewhere at some corner of my heart. The hidden empathetic self expresses itself randomly when I used to get triggered at some moment.
Later, when I joined social work I came to realized that being empathetic is a gift, the hidden gift and special gift which seeks something in every individual, which eliminates pre-biased perception and which always response towards the solution by looking at the problem with different perspective, by analyzing the problem and by linking the solution with respect to different resources. That’s what empathy is. The most important thing is social work gave me voice, voice which speaks whenever empathetic touch should be given to a required situation.
Yes, this is what I have learned; I have learned to be a better person. I would not be distinguishing Madeshi people as “Bhaiya” now. No more, and that’s it, I would be caring for rights of those who can’t function properly in our society. I would condemn a situation and work for solution to overcome it whether it’s in large or small-scale rather just looking at it and doing nothing. I might had prejudice even if I claimed I would think about when looking, hearing and observing a client but now the power I achieved though social work education is I can eliminate prejudice towards client sooner or later eventually overcoming it and perceiving client as a unique self as he/she is. Lastly, I urge it’s all about your practice and determinism towards what you do i.e. in my case ‘social work’.