Woman expelled from village for sharing food with Dalit neighbour

Bhawani Adhikari

Syangja, February 11:

Her neighbourly act did not earn her any kudos, instead she was expelled from her village.

Seeing that her neighbour Analal Damai had returned home from an Arab country after a length of time, Dhan Maya Thapa, a resident of Kichnas VDC-9, invited Damai (so-called low-caste) for a bite to eat last month.The villagers took this as a grave offence and expelled her from the village.

She came to the district headquarters immediately after her expulsion to go about it legally. But returned hoping for a mutual settlement. However, she had to leave the village as the villagers would settle for nothing but her expulsion. Since then Dhan Maya has been staying with relatives in Saldada, Raipur, and Firfire.

Dhan Maya feels the villagers action is not justified as she knows “caste system has been abolished”. Now Dhan Maya’s husband Dal Bahadur Thapa is all set to call a meeting of the villagers as according to him the villagers are out to destroy Dhan Maya raising questions about an illicit relation between his 38-year-old wife and Damai, who is 30.

The villagers have decided to allow Dhan Maya to return on one condition: that she apologise for her actions. But a relative of the Thapa’s said the villagers know that if Dhan Maya files a complaint against them, then will lose. When contacted, CDO Durga Prasad Pokharel said Dhan Maya had visited him at his office, but had returned hoping to settle the issue mutually. He pleaded ignorance regarding the developments.