The Sorry Saga of Bhutan's North

The Sorry Saga of Bhutan's North
Click over the map to know the differences

Saturday, June 9, 2007


Niraj Aryal
The US prefers to tighten its hands and remain tight lipped when it comes to the issue of just commenting however, never asked to flex its arms, in the imprudent Indian stance regarding the Bhutanese refugee crisis in Nepal.
Embarrassing as it is, yet relevant to make US recall that those refugees who were forcefully separated from their soil by the autocratic Druk regime, that does not share diplomatic relations with the US, and were put in a container callously by its nouveau yet unnatural ally-India and transferred to a feeble nation-Nepal.
Perhaps asked several times in the past and will be asked in the future as well, as to what it thinks India can offer to resolve the Bhutanese refugee crisis in Nepal and why is this US silence? However, still keeping its mouth shut the US would not achieve anything else than making Indian playmakers in Delhi chuckle at them. This is perhaps the only instance wherein the Indians may feel their might over the US, maneuvering diplomatic acumen in such a way to keep US out of Bhutanese issues. Thus there is no question of Democracy and Human Rights.
It is equally important for the US to understand that, calling for general help is merely ignoring a specific cause on the position of Bhutanese refugee dispute, wherein India is involved visibly.
Nevertheless, this US stance though claimed to be purely humanitarian to rehabilitate the refugees thousands of kilometers away than to open its diplomatic channels to repatriate them just within kilometers of distance is indeed surprising. However, the US still opts for this difficult option. Mysterious indeed!
The ambassador of the US in Nepal, James F. Moriarty, proudly declares that relocating refugees in the US is according to its global policy wherein they have relocated refugees from different parts of the globe in their land- the land of opportunity and a melting-pot as many may claim. However, this US magnanimity is still intriguing.
To add, the US has relocated around 2.6 million refuges languishing in various parts of the world since 1975. This US effort is credible indeed however, only valid if there were no suitable alternatives or to be specific all diplomatic channels closed to repatriate them. But the US does not want to hurt India by opening its diplomatic channels, in the Bhutanese case, why? No body knows!
The inhumane conditions in which the refugees were brought into Nepal have become a talk of the remote past. However, after living in Nepal for more than a decade, the sudden cropping up of humanitarian issue from some friendly countries is also mystifying. Obviously, the US does not want to annoy India for some unknown reasons. The US magnanimity thus raises more questions than answers!
In the mean time for the government in Nepal:
Better let them stay here; Let them make their homes here! Let us live together with our brothers and sisters!; Let them forget Bhutan, make our future together and one day the easterly wind might bring the smell of their soil here.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with your last point. After all these people are always prefixed or suffixed as Nepalese such as: Bhutanis of Nepalese origin, nepali speaking bhutanese, ethnic nepalese bhutanis whatso ever, the word nepal in its various forms has become the integral part of their identity. So it is better to omit all those suffix and prefix and make it only Nepalese or nepali. This would be the best and most permanent and peaceful solution for this refugee problem.