Nepal Mandala Closure by the Newah Genesto – A Review and a Retrospect

Victory to Newah people and Nepal Mandala, and peace and prosperity to whole Nepal!

Torch rally to support the Genesto
(Photo courtesy –

While most national and international mass media nearly ignored the General strike called by the Newah Autonomous State Joint-Action Movement last Monday in the area of Nepal Mandala, the native land of the indigenous Newah community, the Genesto (Short term for General Strike in Japanese meaning โ€˜Bandhโ€™ a Khas-Nepalised Indian term) shut down the whole area of twelve districts adjoining Kathmandu to utter surprise of those, who ridiculed the Genesto because it was called by the โ€œNewars.โ€

Torch rally in support of Genesto on Jun 1st, 2009
(Photo courtesy –

The Genesto was called in the 12 districts adjoining the Kathmandu valley, historically known as Nepal Mandala, the area where Newah kingdoms had existed before Prithvi Narayan Shah and his army looted the peaceful kingdoms by force some 240 years ago. The Genesto was organized to commemorate the โ€œDark Dayโ€ of Jestha 18 (falls on Jun 1 this year) on which day, the official use of Nepal Bhasa in the Kathmandu metropolis and Maithili language in the Janakpur city were banned by the Supreme Court of Nepal on a writ petition submitted by a group of jealous lot some years ago. Although the Interim Constitution of New Nepal has eased the ban and reinstated Nepal Bhasa as one of Nepalโ€™s state languages, the Newah indigenous community in the Nepal Mandala have not felt safe enough the way even the new government of Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachandaโ€™s plans policies despite his party was among many, which support ethnic and regional autonomies in new Nepal. His governmentโ€™s latest draft proposal to expand Kathmandu city area by constructing an outer ring road beyond the present Ring road and right given to the Authority to confiscate any land within the area is only escalating the fear the land owners of the area, the indigenous Newah community. This is nothing but considered a conspiracy to cleansing of Newah community from their legitimate native lands. The last government has been dissolved. But the draft proposal is still alive. The organizers of the last Mondayโ€™s Genesto demanded the scrapping of the draft proposal for the ill-intended expansion of Kathmandu city area that leads to cleansing of the Newah community from their indigenous lands, and the guarantee of the Newah autonomous state of Nepal Mandala in the new Constitution being written.

Genesto closure
(Photo courtesy – Nepal

The Genesto and many such closures organized hundreds of times by various organizations, including political and non-political parties in the past, for sure suffer the residents in the area itself. Except some interest groups, none including this writer support such Genestos. But the last Genesto organized by a joint-action movement of nine Newah organizations including those affiliated to UNCP (Maoist), NCP (UML), NC and supported by Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities (NEFIN) was a โ€œforcedโ€ Genesto by the circumstances created by past governments in Nepal despite it is now a Federal Republic of Nepal promoting inclusive democracy. But in reality, the term โ€œinclusiveโ€ of democracy remains in the inverted commas.

Despite, the new government ruling in the land of Newah nation, not even water, electricity of basic needs of people have been provided enough. The situation has deteriorated from bad to worse. A 16 hours a day load-shedding was imposed and water was released once in two or three days a week let alone of other basic facilities of providing health or job securities by the nine month old past government. However, people do not blame only the last government but also are aware of past governments indifference to peopleโ€™s suffering of this country. We only hope that the new Government led by Madhav Kumar Nepal will look into these grave sufferings of the people in the capital, too.

Rally after the Genesto was successfully completed
(Photo courtesy – Nepal

Nepal as The Newah understand is a country of Nepalese people of diverse nationalities. Every single man or woman must be treated at least fairly if not equally. If Nepal is compared to a great vehicle, its four wheels are the Terai, Pahad, Himalaya and the Nepal Mandala. A good chauffeur is needless to be reminded of the utmost care he needs to maintain these wheels, full of air and fastened its nuts well. So that he drives the vehicle smoothly.

The Genesto in Newah pesrspect
Despites ridiculed by some of Nepalโ€™s own and some foreign media reporting one sided stories of force used against the violators of the Genesto and some newspapers entirely ignoring the total closure as nothing happened, the Genesto was comparably an unprecedented success in the show of strength of Newah unity. Except a handful of ignorants of the dayโ€™s significance, who tried to violate the closure were reported while newly wed couple carried vehicles were excused. What is alarming was the report of some gangs attacking the organizers of the Genesto. We are not sure of any other word than calling them a pitiful bunch for their opposition, while the city dwelling Newah community have extended support to Genestos called by other parties and organizations. Peaceful demonstration against unfair policies that suffer the people is a legitimate right of any human being. Its pity not only some educated journalist intentionally ignored this great day demanded for a fair treatment to fellow section of Nepalese people โ€“ the Newah indigenous people, a part and parcel of a united nation of Nepal and also some opposition shown by our own Newah community, who simply couldnโ€™t put their own community over their selfish interest for even a short while. It canโ€™t be helped.

Next move
It has already been reported that if the legitimate right of reinstating the Newah automous state of Nepal Mandala is blocked or put obstacles, the Newah people will dare not closing even the Singh Durbar, the seat of the Government and even the Constitution Assembly site. The leaders in the Genesto coalition declared so in the gathering at Basantapur assembled by supporters in thousands after the completion of a complete closure of Nepal Mandala.

Fight until the Newah State is reestablished. Leaders of the Joint Action Movement gathering for next move.
(Photo courtesy – Nepal

The Newah is hopeful that the unity and the strength developed on June 1st must be consolidated through a good maintenance of a network for future moves. There must be constant consultation with Newah community from grass root level to a national leadership level. Enough study, research of the day to day problems of our people, plan and project to find solution to problems must be initiated and well managed. With shared knowledge and wisdom, further strategies must be worked out to succeed the next move.

The Newah people fought for the legitimate right of the use of their native language, the Nepal Bhasa. As a result, every ethnic language of Nepal today is a state language. The Newah leaders initiated fight for the multi-party democracy, now every party (including ethnic and regional) enjoys that right. Let us now support the struggle for ethnic and regional autonomy, the right to self-rule, initiated by the Newah community so that every community of Nepal will get the similar right.

Victory to Newah people and Nepal Mandala, and peace and prosperity to whole Nepal! โ€“ The Newah

Click “Comments” below the line to have your say.