What’s Wrong With Us?

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A week before Holi as I was standing before a school in my neighborhood someone dropped a 500 ml water plastic bag from a four storied building. Aimed at my head it landed on my feet. I frantically searched for the culprit and found no one.

A few days later another kid hit me with a water plastic bag on my forehead. He ran away as I called out to him.

Yesterday as I was walking to university at around 1p.m someone hit me with a water balloon. ‘Who did it?’ I asked .A young man sitting comfortably with his gang in a near by shop replied ‘I did, what will you do? ‘. I asked again and got the same answer. I picked up a pebble and threw at him. He got up, uprooted a bamboo stick used to bar the shop and beat me ruthlessly. ‘Do you know who I am’ he shouted. His gang members stopped him and one of them asked me to leave. I kept staring at him. A little crowd had gathered to watch-no one came to my help. I walked to the university catching my arm in pain.

My right elbow is swollen and I have bruises on my back. This is not some snippet of a feature film. This is what really happened. If you have a story to share please do.

Be responsible ! Do not play with water balloons or hesitate to help someone who has been a victim!

Source: A newly opened Facebook group called ” Be A Hero! Say No To Water Balloons ! “

This is definitely not the first this has happened.  A girl who walks out of her house minding her own business, days if not weeks before Holi gets hit with a water-filled balloon namely ‘Lola’. A girl who retaliates back at the perpetrators is a rarer event. But a girl who dares to retaliate throwing back a pebble gets mercilessly beaten up by a bamboo stick is something I have, for one, heard for the first time.  Yes, there’s an apathetic audience who see everything but do not help. That should be a rare event in the all-change-seeking-revolutionary Nepal after April 2006 but it isn’t. Whether it be the beating up of a woman publicly in the heart of the city, Ratnapark, while people flash their cameras in front of her face rather than helping her or Banda hooligans targeting a school van carrying little kids, its all a symbol of what we have become. A society that might as well declare its moral bankruptcy.

Holi like most Hindu festivals is ‘supposed’ to celebrate the victory of the good over the bad. I will be surprised if the contemporary ‘Lola-Goons’ know of Holika or Hiranyakashyapu or Prahalad. I don’t think knowing the history behind anything is a Goon thing either. The most disturbing part of this event however, is the fact that how members of the female sex are targeted by males regardless of their age. This is not to overlook the fact that men are targeted by females too, but NEVER at this scale.

I have no pity for any one who hits others with lolas. Be it a boy of ten, fourteen or twenty. I don’t think childhood is an excuse for bad behavior. And having been a victim of school bullies very early in my life I refuse to see children as the embodiments of innocence. But children lurking in allies, in school buses, in the retail shops are not the same as children living in hostels like I was where many events go unnoticed. The children with lolas in public places have so many elders around them. What sort of parenting do the parents of the boys who learn to hit lolas at every female in sight do? What is that they are trained to think? Are they fed with Manu’s ‘women like drums are to be hit’? Children have a mind of their own so parenting alone cannot be blamed. So the most important question is -why does no one stop them? Why is there a crowd of Lola goons way before the ONE DAY festival?  Why are they tolerated? Does it give it some sort of ego-boost to the men around them while seeing a woman being hit with the balloon- Here flies the mark of the male superiority right on your face!?! Do the women feel- Its OK unless I am the victim?  Every year, there is one woman or the other who is a victim of the lola. A woman passed out, broke her bones, hurt her face and the latest addition: Got Beaten Up for Retaliating.  Add – And I Looked on because I am a Coward.

I looked on because I study in the biggest private university in Nepal and have other things to worry about. I looked on because it’s not ME but a fellow student of the university.  I merely looked because I have no guts to stand up for anything.  And a mob of the likes of ‘Me’s makes this society I live in.

An apathetic, inhumane, morally bankrupt society.

P.S : I don’t believe in the power of Many when the ‘one’ that makes the ‘many’ is worthless.

Definitely Related Posts:

1. HOLI HOOLIGANS

2. HAPPY HOLI!! ( the threats n joys)

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8 comments

  1. i was shocked too…someone being hit coz s/he retaliated. u sure it was a she?
    a week ago, i had this nightmare about a mob of people wanting to hit us (u, me n other SSS girls) with lolas n i’ve been scared ever since. the next day during lunch at a training program, i recounted my dream and a patrakar bhai asked “what’ll you do if they hit you?” i said i’ve entered a boys hostel to scream at the one who hit me with a lola on my head (and didn’t find the culprit but yelled at the others anyway) and i’d do it again. then he goes “that’s a one-time affair and it isn’t possible to go after each and every one of ’em” with a tone that implied that i should chill out and not make a big deal out of it! well of course it isn’t possible nor advisable to pick a fight with any dimwit who throws a lola at you but to expect us to “just let it go” is a bit too much. it’s probably called ‘forbearance’?! i’m in favour of locking behind bars the little and not-so-little devils and their parents or whoever is around and doesn’t stop them.

    n then another patrakar dai recounted his friend’s story: he was on his way to work when a little scoundrel hit him with a lola. he looked up to see the mom grinning. she said “chodi dinus na, bachcha le manoranjan matra gareko ho”. he was so pissed off he yelled back “ae, ma manoranjan garne sadhan ho? ma tya mathi aaun manoranjan garna?”

    a sexist remark i know but i’m tempted to say she deserved it. i don’t though, i’m not saying it 😡

  2. It is definitely a She, and you know her very well too.Its the story of the creator of the group and the event occurred yesterday. The mentality that we should just be cool about everything is just too much to take isn’t it? I second your motion that such devils-little and not so little ones should be put behind bars. To keep mum about something as outrageous as this is indeed giving a silent consent for this malpractice to continue. And hats off to the patrakar for the perfect line.Kasto laj pacheki ama holi tyo. Manoranjan re ajha. Tyo hamilai school ma vanne katha thyo ni, the son turns into a thief ani last wish chahin ama lai vetne vancha and gives her a tight slap for never stopping him while he ‘stole’ his way to adulthood, testai vayepachi thaha pauli kunai din, jaba Nepal desh ma ‘law’ and ‘order’ and the humanness vanne kura hunechan..

  3. oh my god, how is she? kasto gunda haru raicha. n what’s more infuriating is that there’s no place to go complain. i bet most people would say “kina testa ko mukh lagnu pareko ta?” it is always and always a woman’s fault because, helloooo, she’s a fool if she dares stand up against bigger n stronger men! i still can’t believe someone would do that, esp when they’re at fault!

  4. Really Really a moral bankruptcy!!Feels shy for the whole men hood who did this.There had been many cases in valley and around during HOLI.really a very sad and shy read!So now there seems to be a no way out Zade!Everybody surrendered in Nepal.I’ve not though.Hoping hoping nd hoping till i die!Someday i gona b proud of it !Bt tired of fake hope also by now!

  5. Just get over it. Once a year we celebrate this festival with great fun and enjoyment and you guys seem to be pessimistic about everything….just because you got hit by a LOLA??????…I can understand how girls sometimes try to show that they don’t wan’t to hit when in times they are the ones who are wanting to be hit. Why don’t you try a different street/lane/abandon a day out for such days if you so frightened walking out. Why wouldn’t you do that? I know you want to be hit because then you will know that guys notice you..that makes you feel proud aint it? Just get over it and pen some good stuffs….don’t spoil HOLI’s glory, it’s once-in-a-year festival and you know it. I am against water balloons too but then i think of it again..and I see that it’s what makes festivals so fun-filled and enjoyable….that’s why it is anticipated everyyear…your getting hit with LOLAs is nothing a new chapter in history of Nepal..its a very common thing and very few seem to mind it but you….

  6. @ Dhruba

    This is exactly what is wrong with us. Men like you thrive like ever and women all over the women are left beaten and battered.

    Don’t you see the logic here? Who asked you to stop celebrating ‘Holi’ just don’t promote Holi violence’. Don’t be a part of it and don’t be coward enough to turn away from a victim.

    “I can understand how girls sometimes try to show that they don’t wan’t to hit when in times they are the ones who are wanting to be hit. Why don’t you try a different street/lane/abandon a day out for such days if you so frightened walking out. Why wouldn’t you do that? I know you want to be hit because then you will know that guys notice you..that makes you feel proud aint it?”

    Your sick mentality is pouring out. Take a different alley because theirs a goon in the corner waiting to drench you? Whtf? Who in the whole wide world can stop any women from using her ‘right to freedom’-her right to walk freely. I bet not losers like you. Why would we take a different road because men like you decided one fine day that any women who walked their street would be left battered?

    I strongly feel we need a revolution to bring down men like you. You need to be beaten till you bleed out of your ugly throats.What if women started just hitting men with hockey sticks because on ‘Women’ s day’ they decided to raise a eye against a women. How cool it would be wouldn’t it?

    I bet the next thing you will say is women all across the world should be dressed in gunny sacks so that they won’t be raped. It’s women who entice men to beat ans butcher them for fun.Globally, up to six out of every ten women experiences physical and/or sexual violence in her lifetime.
    (http://www.unifem.org/gender_issues/violence_against_women/)

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