Friday, August 10, 2007

9 August: World Indigenous Day Celebrated

Yesterday was the International Day of the World's Indigenous People which was celebrated all over the world. The United Nations General Assembly declared the day as to be celebrated as World Indigenous Day. It was started from 1994. Since then it has been celebrated annually by various ethnic groups and peoples all over the world. The General Assembly has declared it as the resolution 49/214 of 23 December.

International Labour Organization has declared in the Convention 169 that every individual ethnic group which has their own identity, language, customs and culture should be treated as a different group and should be recognized individually by the country regardless of the number they possess. But in the present context of various countries, many ethnic tribes and groups are being ignored by their country. This situation is same in Nepal too. There are still many ethnic groups who are not recognized by the government of our country that also includes my tribe which is called Lohorung. Though the talk between government and limited indigenous organizations was just held, it is quite ambiguous to understand beside the promise to establish Indigenous People Committee and just trying to make an representative from every recognized ethic groups.

We the family members Arati, Anand Bro, Mother and myself also went to the rally organized by Indigenous Community Women's Network and NGO - Federation of Nepalese Indigenous Nationalities to mark the World Indigenous Day 2007. The rally started form Basantapur Durbar Square and went passing New Road, Bir Hospital, Bhotahiti, Jamal, Ghantaghar, Kamaldi and finally to Pragya Academy. There was a huge mass of people wearing their own cultural dresses.

Inside the Pragya Academy hall all of them were gathered. There were many cultural shows including a nice Indigenous related song which is published here. Many indigenous organization distributed their press releases including the one I have published here. On the occasion Speaker of House of Representative Subas Nembang has come to inaugurate the function. Krishna Bhattachan gave a very strong speech about the indigenous people issues.

In the mid of the program we were being called by Chandra Kulung of our Chulachuli UNESCO Club for attending another program. In that program water resource minister Gyanendra Bahadur Karki had come as a chief guest. He too gave speech about indigenous issues. Many other renowned intellectuals had come there and gave speech about UNESCO Clubs roles in the upliftment of indigenous peoples. The program terminated having a fast food with tea.

After that program we again came to Pragya Hall to watch rest of the shows. There was also a cultural dress shows and song performance by Bimala Subba, a renowed singer of Nepal. After watching for some hours we came back home.

At last, the day was successful as wished and that was the first time I have ever walked for any kind of rally. So I was quite excited and shouted in the slogans of indigenous issues which made my throat to jam. After sometime it became normal. Many news channels and radio stations had also come and took interview to many people who had come there.

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