Friday, 6 July 2007

Why Biharis are Discriminatedby Prabhat Kumar Sinha
Montreal, Canada

April 30, 2005
http://www.patnadaily.com/readerswrite/2005/apr/prabhat_sinha3.html



A Sardar jee was arrested in Australia for stabbing "his" pregnant wife. Further investigation revealed that the woman was in fact "his" wife on paper, and in reality she was his elder brother's wife. When accused wanted to migrate from Punjab, India to Australia, he failed to get visa. His elder brother was settled in Australia and they designed a plan to help the younger brother migrate to Australia. Australia settled elder brother would "divorce" his wife and then she would go to Punjab and "marry" the younger brother and on the basis of her status in Australia, the younger brother would get visa. After coming to Australia, the woman started living with her "real" husband. The younger Sardar jee who is now her "official" husband did not like this and when he noticed that she is pregnant he got infuriated and stabbed her. This is no sardar jee joke but a true incident of recent past (3-4 months back).

Why am I telling you a fraudulent migration story on a site related to Bihar? I am trying to understand Bihar and Biharis with respect to our brethren from relatively far better developed states like Punjab and Gujarat. I am trying to understand why a Bihari is looked upon down in his own country. What is the contribution of "underdeveloped" Bihar in the national prosperity compared to other developed parts of the country? This discussion is relevant when there is a growing sense of discomfort among many that Bihar is fast becoming a liability on the nation especially after it's bifurcation as it is no more provider of natural industrial resources and it's contribution to national exchequer is decreasing. If you carefully read newspapers and listen to national media, it is not difficult to see that the so-called "progressive" and "prosperous" states seem to be up in arms against what they consider an injustice where their "efficiency" and "progressiveness" is being penalized by diverting resources to the poorest state like Bihar which they term as "laggards". When EFC (Eleventh Finance Commission) made some recommendations in respect of sharing central revenue by the different states, there was lot of noise against this on the basis of contributions to the central revenue made by poor states. Don't we listen on the same line that since Mumbai is giving highest contribution of Income Tax, it deserves highest attention from central govt.? Even for the same reason we Biharis feel the pain and accept that we don't command respect in different parts of the country because our own state is in pathetic condition. Give Bihar to Pakistan instead of Kashmir, Bihar is a gutter and like insects, Biharis are coming out of this gutter and spreading in better parts of country and making those parts bad, oye Bihari, oye Lallu kind of remarks are regularly inflicted on us by media and by even leaders and many responsible persons. I am Atal not-Bihari Vajpayee, we will not let Haryana become another Bihar by new CM of Haryana, Bihar type incidents are happening in Punjab, Gujarat is NOT Bihar by Narendra Modi to NRIs in USA and UK; are constantly echoing in my ears. More painful is to see educated Biharis justifying these remarks on the basis of our own pathetic state Bihar and say that respect is earned NOT demanded and as Bihar is really a liability on the nation. To deserve respect we must develop Bihar. Only a developed state people deserve and command respect. How come a Bihari, who belongs to a very corrupt, crime-prone, and most backward state called Bihar, can command respect, is a sentiment even echoed by many Biharis also.

Let us analyze the contribution of truncated Bihar compared to others in national prosperity and progress.

We all know that large numbers of poor, illiterate Biharis are taking trains to reach Mumbai, Delhi, Punjab, Gujarat in search of rozi-roti. These people are "destroying" the beauty of the metros and stressing the limited resources of Mumbai, Delhi etc. Future of Mumbai is in danger and to save Mumbai we must drive these Biharis out. Hindu Hridaysamrat Bal Thackeray drives his main political strength from these sentiments only. Recently there was a drive to raze slums and oust such Biharis from Mumbai and the Congress Govt. got support from all the opposition party like Shiv Sena and national party BJP who claim to be nationalist parties. Even when many of the people have NOT seen Bihar, they get bad impression of Bihar by seeing poor, illiterates Biharis flocking metros. Once a Bihari settled in Mumbai, many more from his village follow him.

Wakeup at 3 o'clock in the early morning of a harsh Delhi winter, come to Chanakyapuri where many foreign country's embassies are located. Go to embassy of Canada, UK, USA and see yourself a very long queue of visa seekers. You will notice that the very large numbers of people standing in the queue are illiterates, semi-literates, poor people from Punjab. These type of people outnumber well educated visa seekers even when India is becoming IT superpower, s/w engineers seeking company sponsored visa are in far less numbers compared to semi-literate people of Punjab. Not a single Bihari you will find in the queue who is NOT well educated. Go to International Airport in Mumbai, and the scene is NOT very different from Patna Railway Junction. Poor people from Kerala and many southern states are going to Middle East countries to do all petty works like cooks, carpenters, electricians, laborers etc. Go to any place in Punjab, Guajarat, Kerala and you will find many agents promising visa to Canada, UK, Kenya etc. Migration is an industry in Punjab, our no. 1 developed state. People are so desperate to migrate that they are doing all sorts of frauds and innocent people becoming victims in the process. There are hundreds of stories of abandoned brides reported in the Indian press in the past few years. Indeed, so titanic is the problem that its effects are being felt in Indian towns and villages too. The National Commission for Women (NCW) in New Delhi recently identified desertions of women by NRIs as one of the most serious gender issues in Punjab. It is bringing bad name to the nation also.

I have been to different parts of the world like UK, USA, and Canada due to nature of my job. I came across many Gujaratis, Punjabis working as truck drivers, cleaners, grocery shop owners etc. NOT to say that all Gujaratis and Punjabis in USA, UK, Canada, SA countries are like that but majority of them are doing these type of work. I have met many Biharis also in USA, UK, and Canada but yet to come across a single Bihari who is NOT well educated.

British took people from Gujarat and Punjab to their colonies for menial jobs. Since then they have learnt the trick to become NRIs. They have established links in many countries. A Punjabi having a job in India is ready to come to Canada etc. and take any low end job to earn dollars and become NRI with help of scores of Punjabis already settled there. The very lucrative approach to earn money and status of NRI is forcing them to do all kind of frauds and heinous crimes. They even give anti-India statements and stories to gain the status of refuge. Do a Google search and you will come across hundreds of thousands of such cases of migration frauds. But once they acquire the status of NRI they command respect in India. They deserve respect as they contribute significantly to our forex reserves. Latest report says that NRIs wired 23 billion USD to India, far more than what s/w companies are bringing to the nation. We conveniently ignore that all the separatist movements whether in Punjab or any other parts of the country, they get largest funds from NRIs. Funds from NRIs have even gone to many communal movements/riots in the country. It is a fact.

We conveniently ignore that Bihari laborers are backbones of unorganized economy of the nation. These cheap labors are NOT different from H1 labors working in USA. Yes, H1 visa holders are known as "skilled labors" in official documents. But when there is any threat on H1 visa numbers or rules we cry foul and plead that in a way we are helping economy of US. It is Bihari labors who helped Punjab witness green revolution, it is Bihari cheap labors that real estate industry in Mumbai, Delhi and other place are thriving upon, it is Bihari cheap labors who build flyovers, roads, bridges and factories. It is Bihari cheap labors who make unskilled work force of the country. It is poor Biharis who are guarding MNCs and factories as security staff. But if an illegal slum comes up in metro, instead of blaming local administration for that, it is easy to thrash and bulldoze them. How convenient it is that to complete your real estate project, you settle poor labors in local vicinity, poor labors pay bribes to local civic machinery on regular basis but once work is over, to beatify the place they become a liability overnight. Recently Bal Thackeray gave dictate that those Biharis who have been residing for less than 20 years must be driven away from Mumbai. NRIs seek Green card in USA in 6 years but Biharis need more than 20 years in their own country to get ration card.

And its "intelligentsia" - which the poverty of local education and paucity of local opportunities could not hold on to - forms the bulk of the country's administrative and institutional strength, populating secretariats, banks, universities and media houses. Biharis are not lagging behind any state people in any race be it IIT, IIM type world class institutions or IAS, IPS, or other streams of bureaucracy. According to a recent estimate, every district of the nation will be having either DM or SP as Bihari. Biharis are backbone of administration of the nation. It is no exaggeration. Any decision-making body of the central govt. has definitely Biharis in good number, be it a political body or bureaucratic body. That too when the education system in Bihar is in mess and central govt. has systematically neglected Bihar. Bihar, which was once seat of learning and boasted world class learning centers like Nalanda and Vikramshila, does not have a single central university. I can give you many examples, which tell the story of criminal discrimination, and injustice Bihar has been continuously subjected to. Talents of Bihar are going to different parts of the country to do research, higher studies etc. There are many incidents in recent past when Bihari students were denied admission in various colleges in Delhi and Punjab and harassed based on flimsy ground. Delhi alone has 4 Central Universities. Even North-East region has 5 central universities. Bihar is much bigger and populous than Delhi. Population of Bihar is more than double of that of combined population of all the North-east states. I am not writing this article to elaborate injustice against Bihar as it would require a separate article running into pages, but I am pointing to Bihar's contribution in national prosperity and progress despite it's own backwardness due to various reasons.

Who can deny the fact that Bihar is a most backward state of the nation? Our corrupt and shrewd politicians are mainly responsible for that. But same is true for developed states as far as corrupt politicians are concerned. Corrupt politicians and corruption is not unique to Bihar. Bihar is NOT no. 1 corrupt state in India. Stamp Paper scam (which ruined the revenue systems of state govts.), UTI scam, Shares scam (which duped thousands of investors), Land scam of Mumbai and Noida, Cricket scam, Hawala scam, Telecom scam of Sukhram fame, Tehelka scam and many such never ending lists of scams in the country tell the story of corruption. Disease of corruption is everywhere and it is rotting the system. Bihar cannot be singled out as most corrupt state. Read any official, un-official report on corruption in India.

Is Bihar a most criminal state of the nation??? All will jump to agree with this, thanks to media, even educated Biharis are spreading this blatant lie. This is a classic example of urban middle class thought process who cannot think beyond crime happening in urban places like Patna and Delhi. If a school boy is kidnapped in Patna by hard core criminals, it becomes a national headline, but many crimes which are committed against dalits, woman and poor people in rural part of the country are not even getting attention of print media. Mind that these type of crimes are NOT committed by professional criminals but by people with powerful connections and is very prevalent in all parts of the country. Let us look at crime from at all India level to understand Bihar's position. To begin with, let me tell you about what National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) has said in it's latest report :-

Pondicherry reported the highest crime rate for all IPC crime, 447.7, which is 2.6 times the national crime rate of 169.5. It also reported 54 suicides per 100,000 people. The national average was 10.6.

Kerala reported the highest crime rate followed by Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.

As for crimes against women, Chhattisgarh reported 38.4 per cent of a total of 146,678 cases registered nationwide.

Among the 35-mega cities, Delhi accounted for 24 per cent (320 out of 1,312) rape cases and 34 per cent (759 of the 2,251) of kidnappings and abduction of women.

You may jump to say that crimes in Bihar go un-reported but wait as although non-registration of crime is a common, nationwide phenomenon; it is most prevalent to conceal the incidence of minor offences, or charges against the rich and the influential. In point of fact, data for every year since 1953 have been systematically compiled by the NCRB, and the trend patterns that emerge show no sign of systematic concealment or manipulation.

Clearly Bihar is not the most criminal state as is consistently projected by media. Why is it so that even we Biharis tend to believe that Bihar is most crime-prone state? Powerful urban middle class who writes in newspapers, debate on TV, forms opinion, gets maximum attention from Govt. are talking about crimes committed by criminals. They immediately take note of crimes happening in cities including Patna. They take note of crimes, which affect them directly. These urban middle class talk about crime they mean crimes happening in cities and Patna which are committed by pure criminals and ignore crimes committed by public in villages on dalits and women. A random sampling of crimes reported in mainstream Indian newspapers tells their story: "Dalit boy beaten to death for plucking flowers"; "Dalit tortured by cops for three days"; "Dalit 'witch' paraded naked in Rajsthan"; "Dalit killed in lock-up at Kurnool"; "7 Dalits burnt alive in caste clash"; "5 Dalits lynched in Haryana"; "Dalit woman gang-raped, paraded naked"; "Police egged on mob to lynch Dalits". Statistics compiled by India's National Crime Records Bureau indicate that in the year 2000, 25,455 crimes were committed against Dalits. Every hour two Dalits are assaulted; every day three Dalit women are raped, two Dalits are murdered, and two Dalit homes are torched. Most of the above crimes are NOT done by professional criminals. But why NOT it becomes an issue? Why India shines and UMC feel good? Recently an eight year old boy named Shyam Sada was severely branded using a hot iron rod ("hansia"). He fainted. A son of a owner of a brick clan ("bhatta") committed this crime in a village in Darbhanga. When a crime committed by a criminal in Patna/Delhi, then it is considered a crime. But, when a crime is committed against a poor child, that too not by professional criminals, it is not even counted as crime. Remember, how "Kislay kidnapping" incident in Patna and "Arpit kidnapping" by his maid servant in Delhi, it attracts attention of national media. Police swing into action and criminals are punished. Kislay had become son of Atal not-Bihari Vajpayee.

If Bihar has a politician like Md. Shahabuddin, then the same Bihar has a bureaucrat like C.K. Anil. No, Bihar is again NOT unique in harassing upright officials. An IAS topper of 1991 batch, Raju Narayanswami who was in Kerala cadre was once asked to report a junior officer in Kerala as this very meritorious person was never very popular among politicians. There are many such stories of IAS/IPS harassment by political establishments keep coming from progressive and developed states like Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Karnataka, Kerala, Punjab, Haryana.

When CAT paper leak scam happened, it was conveniently highlighted more that the responsible persons were from Bihar while forgetting it was the management that should be considered more responsible for this type of happening. And certainly, the management or organizing board was outside of Bihar. The main focus of the debate was "persons belong to Bihar" rather than leakage of CAT paper itself. But when on April 6, 2005, few employees of a Pune based call center were arrested for stealing over $350,000 from four Citibank customers -- which has sent shock waves through the Indian IT-enabled services sector, did we read anywhere about the state those arrested frauds belong to? I am sure that media and others must have worked very hard to find some Bihar link in this case of crime. Recently so-called progressive states run by pro development people refused to implement VAT. Haryana is the first state to implement VAT, and results are very encouraging. Revenue increased many folds and very less "chori" of sales tax. Imagine, had Bihar opposed VAT, what we would have been termed as ? Imagine, if Bihar is a developed state and all Biharis labors or educated return to Bihar, do you think that Punjabis, Gujaratis, Keralites and others will restrain themselves from temptation to earn status of NRI and will stay back to drive the Indian economy in unorganized sector? We celebrate the "Prabasi Bhartiya Diwas" every year, but we degrade our own brothers from Bihar who are building the nation. I am very sure that we are fully capable of building Bihar as well. It is just a matter of time. There is no reason that Biharis should feel ashamed about themselves. In fact we have every reason to be proud of being Bihari. No doubt about that.

Bihar is a mainstream state of India, and it has always lead role in any significance change in the country, be it our freedom movements or Indira's dictatorship or dislodging the last Govt. led by BJP from centre when buoyed by BJP's success in Gujarat and few more states, many related outfits were openly talking of repeating "Gujarat experiments" elsewhere in the nation. Bihar, a land of Emperor Ashoka, Chandragupta, Chanakya, Budhha, Mahavir, Guru Govind Singh jee, Sher Shah Suri, Rajendra Prasad, Jaiprakash Narain and may such luminaries, can boast of many original thinkers and our rebellious fighting nature and deep political understanding can be attributed to above glorious inheritance. Precisely for the above facts, we Biharis have never demonstrated any narrow regional thinking. Bihar is also a border state, yet there is no history of any kind of separatist movements, and I am more than 100% sure that in future also Bihar will play the lead role on the question of integrity of the nation. For us there has been no difference between India and Bihar. For NRIs, India may be a picnic place to be visited for "dandiya" or "bhangra" but for a Bihari like me, Bihar is our home, sweet home, not just a place to go for "sattu" and "litti-chokha". I cannot accept any insult to my beloved state called Bihar.



Comments:
The article by Mr Sinha is fantastic and an eye-opener for all Indians especially Biharis. - Madhurendra K Verma, Laheriasarai, Bihar - May 1, 2005
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I must thank Prabhat Kumar Sinha, based in Montreal Canada for bringing out such positive sparks for Bihar. I am currently based in New York and there has not been a single day when I have not browsed PatnaDaily.Com and hindustandainik.com to get a feel of Swades (Bihar in this case).

The reality is in India, Bihari Indians are being discriminated and are being snatched away from the very right of Indian Constitution. But the question is who cares.

The politicians of Bihar do not as they do not have the required education to be able to think for the large picture.

The living mass of Bihar is not financially sound to be able to demand for their right.

I cannot agree less to the idea of what "Bihar is to India", "India is to the world". So it's high time Biharis take pride in whatever they do, as I am very positive about this new generation.

Regards and kudos to PatnaDaily team for such a brilliant effort. - Atul Vatsyayan - May 1, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Excellent Mr. Prabhat.

It's all a branding issue. When a Bihari says 'Subhas' instead of 'Subhash', or 'Burma' instead of 'Verma' he is made fun of. But check on these, from top of my mind

Gujrati pronunciations:
1. 'Cope' stands for COP
2. 'Coel' stands for COIL
3. 'Hole' stands for HALL
4. 'Strend' stands for STRAND
5. 'Cedaaar' stands for 'CEDAR'

Keralite pronunciations:
1. 'Aundy' stands for Aunty
2. 'Ungle' stands for Uncle
3. 'Onn' stands for One
4. 'Eightttt' stands for Eight

Bengali pronunciations:
1. 'Kolbor' stand for 'Culver'
2. The funniest one "Hum giregi" means "I would like to get off.'

It's all about branding. I am a proud Bihari. I am proud that in the next 10 years all 900 + districts in India will either have a Bihari DM or SP. - Raj Verma, PA, USA - May 1, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Congratulation to Prabhat Sinha and PatnaDaily to tell us the truth about Bihar and Biharis. Relentless campaign by media against Biharis have started fetching them results. Anti-Bihar sentiments are now all time high in India. Bihar has, successfully, been colonized once again, but this time, internally.

Many thought, it will happen to only supporters of Laloo Prasad, many thought it will happen only to subjeewala in Delhi, many thought it will happen to only poor students in Bombay, but no, it has started happening everywhere and with everybody. From Parliament to Airport and to Yadav Ji and to Sinha Ji.

There are cases that Biharis who are carrying passport issued in Patna are strip searched separately in Bombay and Bangalore, who knows if they belong to Bangladesh posing as Hindus. List has increased; earlier it were Muslims, now Biharis have been added.

But who cares for Bihar? Laloo Prasad is too busy attacking Narendra Modi and Sushil Modi is too busy protecting Narendra Modi. Bihar is not an issue for them, but I once again congratulate PatnaDaily for raising issue relevant to Bihar. - Raghu Yadav, London, UK - May 2, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A lot of my fellow Biharis are curious why we are discriminated across India. Why is Bihar the poorest state in one of the poorest countries in the world namely India. If we think from the global perspective we are at the bottom of the bottom!

The solutions to Bihar's problems are well known and are not impossible implement. Build character, morals, ethics, empathy and civic sense in the citizens of Bihar. Fix these problem and it wouldn't matter what the others say about Biharis.

The easiest way to start doing this is teaching these social values to children. This should be done mostly in school because it is impossible to monitor and teach each and every family to provide these values to their children. On the other hand schools can do it more effectively.

All the people who are over 30 years old cannot be changed so children are our only hope. Do not spend too much time in trying to change the grown ups. Build strong law and order and legal system to make the grown ups follow the concept of 'community living'.

In case a child daily spends say 8 hours in school teach them about 'social values' for 4 hours. Remember that each of these children will be the future citizens/members of the society and we will have to interact with them as fellow members of the society almost every hour. Don't you want them to be nice people?

Secondly, in case some kid is extremely bright in say engineering, science or medicine, the schools should identify them early, give them special coaching and make them topnotch engineers, science and doctors. Don't waste the time of rest of the students in science and engineering teach them social values instead. This is more important.

Also, make every child attend school. This should be more important than religion or politics and every parent who decides to have children need to make sure that they go to school. In case the parents are unable to do so the government and NGOs need to help them to the maximum extent. In case the parents do not want to do this even though they have the means then arrest them for being anti-national and let the government take the children away from these parents and bring them up as responsible adults. This system is not as difficult as it
sounds. It works out great in USA and China. Let the Army, NGOs, respected citizens take care of these children. Give businesses big tax break in case they help out with this effort.

Regarding businesses, build a system that supports innovative and honest people rather than mean and manipulative people.

By nature Biharis are fearless and intelligent but when character is added to the mix they become divine.

Once these children with social values grow up, we will have a society that is even better than the Americans! People will not tolerate injustice in the society, they will be brave to take tough decisions, they will stand up for the weak and the truth. They will set high goals, build the biggest company, the biggest buildings, hospitals, bridges, universities, space shuttles et cetera.

It is not difficult to build a great nation, you don't need diamond, gold, IIT, IIM , Tata or Birla. You just need the most important ingredient namely the people. Working together man can build all the IIT , IIM, Tatas or Birlas, bring water to even the desert, make electricity and create prosperity, peace and enjoyment. Japan has no other natural resource but it's people and it builds the best electronics, Americans have converted deserts to 18 hole golf courses, the Western Europeans have overcome the challenge of living in a snow covered dead land and
built the best societies. I am sure Biharis can overcome their own problems and become great too!! - Som Vishwakarma, USA - May 2, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I was highly moved by the article and I personally feel that it is very well-written. - Rohit Kishore - May 2, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Dear Prabhat jee:

Most of the points raised by you are valid. But I have some points and reservations to few of them and I personally feel to highlight those points also.

Yes, we all know that Biharis name has gone bad among rest of the Indians. But the question is why? Your article only covers this. One thing is very much clear; getting a bad name is a slow and gradual process. Behind the curtain of pride, many facts show different pictures which not only look odd and gives negative impression about Biharis but are also against the humanity.

If you go to other states in India, people ask many questions once they know that you are from Bihar like how do people live in Bihar? Why people are so dangerous? Why do they believe in dirty politics? Why they are not educated? Why crime rates are high?

If people ask these types of question, they have a valid point. The answer is: because we are more actively involved in wrong things compared to any other state.

Our leaders act in a way as if we are only illiterates. It seems Bihar is without brains or educated people even though maximum IAS, Civil servants, bank P.Os, IIT’ians are from Bihar only. You know when I started organization called "Bihar Brains", people ask: Are there any brains in Bihar also?

My all logical statements and proofs become illogical because of the common man mentality and thinking about Bihar and Biharis. I am giving some examples in support of the wrongdoings by Biharis which have directly or indirectly created and creating bad image of Bihar:

1. Engineering/Medical students: Since we have less number of medical/engg colleges, most students are going out of state for studies. Most of them are performing well but some of them are actively involved in disruptive activities, party politics, and heinous crimes. I saw many cases when I was working in Pune. Many a times, I played role of guardian of the boys and once I even became a guardian of a Bihari girl also. I got the impression from their warden/college teachers that she was not attending the classes, roaming hither and thither and that’s why she was failing in the examinations conducted by college/university. During 4 years at Pune, I didn't see any untoward incident. Once, a Bihari student, the son of a bigwig, brutally killed a famous badminton champion in a hotel. CBI investigative team started an investigation; found that the killer was the son of famous politician from Bihar.

It means sons of bigwigs never think about their prestige, they know that their fathers are well and good, whatever they do; it will be corrected.

2. Train incidents/student mobs for examinee: Most of the job seekers in Bihar go out for taking exams and create problems for average people who have train reservations and rights to sit and sleep. They simply tell the passengers that from now on they will have to sit and not sleep. And "Bechara" passenger has to accept whatever the student mob says, otherwise many times we see the news that family members are misbehaved by these student mobs. The victims are not always people from other states but, in general, whoever is sitting on their own reserved seats.

3. Respect for foreigners: Once I was traveling in a second class from Delhi to Varanasi, a student mob, seeing foreign girls and boys in the train, started teasing them and laughing. When I asked about this, they told me that these foreigners do not know Hindi so they cannot understand what they were speaking. I told them that the language of crying and laughing was universal all over the world so if they laughed at others, they could certainly feel it and it would create bad impression on them. After that, they stopped teasing.

So many times we have heard that foreigners are misbehaved in trains.

These are just a few of the incidents but it happens regularly. Maharashtra incident was just one of the examples of student mob. People don’t want to cross Bihar by train.

We have maligned our reputation ourselves. By writing this article, I am just trying to highlight some more facts where we commit blunders.

Biharis bad name will certainly change into good name when we do some good things and set standard in that (like we have good name for Civil service results), do some developmental work, leave all the inequality we have in mind, help each other in co-operative manner. We must prove to ourselves first by doing good deeds. We don’t have good schools, colleges, R&D centers not only because govt. is not taking any interest in them but also that we have not done anything for Bihar. We have not taken any preventive measures to save Bihar and Biharis name and fame. Yes Biharis must be respected by taking names of Ashoka, Chandragupta, Chanakya, Buddha, Mahavir, Guru Govind Singh jee, Sher Shah Suri, Rajendra Prasad, Jaiprakash but certainly these name would be sustained if we follow their paths. Then we can feel a sense of pride about Bihar and Biharis. - Bibhuti Bikramaditya, Seoul, South Korea - May 2, 2005

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I am sure this article will open eyes of many Biharis. I fully agree with the author. After reading few comments here I am tempted to comment back.

I read somewhere,

Lohe ka swad mat poochho lohar se,
poochho oos ghode (horse) se,
jiske mooh me lagam hai.

If you are still not at the receiving end, you will still not realize the pain or problem. Let me put mother of all logic on their behalf.

"A child is born today in Bihar. He deserves humiliation. He is responsible for this. He has maligned his reputation himself."

His mistakes,

Engineering/Medical students:
Train incidents/student mobs for examinee:
Respect for foreigners:

And I will add one from my side, he does not know anything about VLSI (8 Cr Biharis should know this stuff), am I right? I think so.

When we are not at the receiving end, we start comparing Bihar, which is just another state of India, with sovereign super powers like USA and talk about all those chicken and egg theory. - Shankar Paswan, Reading, England - May 2, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The article smells more to be a collection of all the news from Bihar. The writer seems to be frustrated who instead of writing about contribution of people from Bihar to their country is more interested in criticising his own and other communities and respective states. - Mallika - May 4, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I completely agree with Ms Mallika. The writer seems to be fully frustrated. It seems Mr. Prabhat has never had his education outside Bihar. I did my education from IIT, Delhi. Some of my best pals have been from Bihar. One never makes friends because they are from a state/territory. I never treated them differently because they are from Bihar. But the difference in thoughts does make us choose friends of our choice.

How does it make a difference if Punjabis are doing labour jobs? Is doing labour bad? All jobs demand labour - some mental and others physical. After having visited places like US, Canada and UK, the writer would have realised by now that the key to getting rich is working hard and not doing a white collar job.

The writer has tried to hurt the sentiments of certain communities. I think he should not forget about the contributions that Sabeer Bhatia, Kalpana Chawala, Dr Hargobind Khurana have made contributions in the technical areas. Some of the other rich and famous Punjabis are Kanwal Rekhi who has earned the title of sage of Silicon Valley, Jessie Singh, who is worth millions today from trading in computer peripherals in the US, Narinder Kapany the father of fiber optics, Sanjeev Sidhu the founder of i2 Technologies and Sant Singh Chatwal who owns the largest number of hotel rooms in Manhattan and runs the Bombay Palace chain of restaurants globally. The list is endless.

Let's rise above this narrow minded thinking that 'I am a Bihari, you are a Punjabi, You are a Gujrati' and think of an united India. Let's respect our fellow brethren for what they stand and not because from where they are. - Gurleen Canth - May 4, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It's definitely a very good article on past, present and good future of Bihar. The article gives a hint of author's deep knowledge about many past and current social, economical, political ... issues. But one thing I have to say that in PD, this Bihari Diaspora often writes about the current plight of Bihar, injustice, anti-Bihari sentiment all around, English media, …it's not very late …Bihar's pride will be back one day …blah-blah-blah. But how many of this $ earning NRBs really do anything for Bihar at ground level? How many of you even have helped your next coming generation morally, financially or for their good education (either they are your nephew, niece/cousin, in some case, even own brother…) who is still growing up in the place of cynosure, Bihar with its long list of problems. If we really want some change then we need to act on it too! You will find lots of Gujaratis, Punjabis, South Indian communities abroad. These people do have strong bonding for their people and community. They help them to reach the place/status where they are today. If one Patel/Sardarji of the village reaches abroad, he just not gloats about his own success when he visits back home next time. He helps his people; it's no more a secret to us now. But we Biharis in general (not talking about the exceptions) have got so much jealousy inside that we always like to enjoy the status of being 'special or superior' to the people in and around. So most of us think that if this guy reaches the same height, how come I will remain superior to him anymore in our Bihari samaj? And we are so much fragmented on the caste line that makes things even worse in this case.

Hope this educated (!) Diaspora of Bihar works on some ground realities with their best available resources for improving the things around, than just writing articles and comment in PD. Bon Chance! - Kaushik Kumar, Graduate Engineering student,
Montreal, Canada - May 4, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The young man Kaushik hits the nail on the head. It is refreshing to hear from young people who have clarity of thought. The monsoon frog chorus about the pros and cons of Bihar & Biharis is meaningless. The fact that a person left Bihar for greener pastures does not automatically make him / her a consultant who can give the best remedies for Bihar's ills.

If you mean good do good. Actions speak louder than words. I suspect many NRBs who have had to make cultural compromises console themselves by reminding themselves and others about the ills of Bihar. They do nothing for Bihar and the criticism they spew out is more of a back patting for having fled from a messy home without cleaning it. They are happy to sit in the neighbour's palatial bungalow and congratulate themselves as they watch their kin line up at the street tap across the road. If they have no problems with their own conscience so be it.

Bihar needs affection and help from them, not just reminders of its poor state and uncalled for advice. Remember Bihar may be hell on earth but they were nurtured here when they were vulnerable small children. The people who held their hand still live here. It is thanks to the education Bihar gave them that today they are where they are. The culture they are proud of came from Bihar.

Without Bihar, NRBs will be rootless - flying leaves in a cultural blizzard. The realization would dawn when their next generation takes charge.

While your head sways in the skies do not forget to water your roots. - Rajesh Chaubey - May 5, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It was great to read an eye-opening article on PatnaDaily after long time. Hearty congratulations to Mr. Prabhat. This article is full of true facts. Mr. Rajesh Chaubey and Mr. Kaushik have said that the NRBs don’t do any thing about Bihar. It is wrong. As per news on PatnaDaily about IIT in Bihar, I am sure Mr. Rajesh Chaubey and Mr. Kaushik will find their apprehensions unfounded.

Every body has the right to advise on issues related to Bihar. If NRBs will not talk about Bihar then who will talk about Bihar? People should stop enjoying nail on head!

Sardar Harbhajan Singh, Patna, Bihar (India) - May 6, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

First off, regards to Mr. Prabhat Jee for opening eyes of thousands of educated Biharis. Special thanks for bringing crime rate of all India in light. Personally speaking, I have never been to Jahanabad side but I do feel scared.

Now Whole Bihar got bad face just because of our educated brethren never defended Bihar from being given a bad name. I fully agree with Bibhuti Jee in coming out without hesitation that our student do misbehave with fellow passengers in train where number of passenger are from our neighboring states and hence often fellow passenger get scared while passing through Bihar. I admire Prabhat Jee the way he caught media as an ingredient to defame Bihar.

Whenever I travel I always defend our brethren for defaming the land of Great Ashoka.

Here I would like to put one point: From where an anti social element starts his “gundagardi”?

If you think, you will get the answer. Yes, when our and world’s one of the most prestigious institution NALANDA UNIVERSITY got destroyed.

I still remember L. S. College of Muzaffarpur got high position in academic institution after Patna Science College during '80s. The guys staying in hostels started accumulating guns. Now how did they succeed in managing weapons in hostels? There can be only two reasons: 1. Guardians are losing hold on students even days before matriculation. 2. Hostel wardens are busy making money.

Why people laugh at us?

Because there are no civic sense in our brethren. As a person I won't look into other states. But as a responsible citizen of India I will look into myself where I went wrong.

Let me tell you why we learn English twice.

Because during school days we speak what we learn there but when we take a chair with DPS guys they tell us you didn’t learn correct pronunciation.

My point is to come up with a plan which can uplift our education system.

I partially agree with Mr. Prabhat jee that Center plays step father with us. When I was in Delhi, I raised the term “DECENTRALIZATION OF EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS”. The problem of North India is that every thing is in Delhi. Thanks to the Supreme Court order, industries are shifting to Ghaziabad and Noida. With no industries in Bihar, labour class of Bihar cannot feed its families in working in Zamindar’s field. As a result, labour flies to Delhi, Punjab. No good higher educational institution in Bihar, government school teachers and college professor are busy making money rather than doing their duty. Result- students fly to Delhi. We don’t have choice other than these places. Middle class of Bihar is very much aware of the education system so they send their sons and daughters to Delhi. Now Bihari crowd makes more than 30% of Delhi population. Hence if any misdeed happens; who gets noticed?

Until and unless Bihar gets good higher educational institution crime will not stop. Parents have to be aware enough about their children, right from the beginning. Guardian should be given parenting skills. Career-oriented camp should be organized in rural Bihar and most important thing: Crime prone areas should be on top priority. Even parenting-skill camp should be organized first in crime areas. - Prashant, Bangalore - May 6, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I read the article & the comments of most of my friends. I am a student doing my PG from JNU Delhi. I belong to Patna. In JNU, people call me as 'Bihari'. I just ignore these words or take it as a matter of pride. I always think high about myself. Not for any other reason, but for my education, my values and my family. And so should all of us feel. I feel the writer has some kind of insecurity and low self esteem.

And if you really feel that you can do something, go to Bihar, adopt at least one child, raise him, educate him and bring him up. Give him the values that makes him a self confident person. I can guarantee that you'll feel less frustrated. - Mukesh K Jha, JNU, New Delhi - May 7, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Your article touched my heart and brain. No doubt its cent percent correct as per our experience. When I joined BARC in Mumbai 2 years ago, someone called me "Bhaiya". I felt happy that they were showing regard to me but immediately I felt that they were mocking me. That time I felt how they were discriminating the Biharis.

Thanks, I really appreciate your attempt, I read your article a number of times, and hope those who are ashamed of being Bihari will feel proud of themselves after reading this article. - Ajay Mishra, VECC, Kolkata - May 10, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Dear Prabhat and others who have commented for the article and who have shown slight irritation.

I hope that many of you might have read Maugham, he has given a very lucid and clear understanding of human beings in "Of Human Bondages" and I want to draw a parallel line with what he has said in his book and what we Indians think about each other.

At first to draw a conclusion and compare one state with the other in itself is a myopic idea because this does not serve any purpose at all, we must be concerned Indians and instead of highlighting problems and spending days over them must try to first make ourselves a conscious Indian and rise to occasions where we can show the world that we are the largest and best example of a closely knitted democracy.

This will come only when we forget that we are individuals from different states because state-wise discrimination must be first eliminated from the mind because we are already under the burden of casteism et el.

To draw examples and blame a person of a particular state amounts to racism and would we love to be called racist in our own country by pointing fingers at each other?

We all represent India may be we are from different strata of the society but we still share a common platform.

Whenever some goon is caught in Delhi and people discover that he is from Bihar they start commenting that all Biharis are alike and whenever a South Indian is in the same league, people say "arrey dekho sab Madrasi aise hi hote hain."

Now go to any state where Marwaris are considered as makkhichoos, and kanjoos, is this what we expect of each other.

It is very easy to place blame on others and it is also policy of many to create rift between two fraternities just to add joy to his soul which is derived out of such menial things.

My comments may sound wayward to many but I also know that many would like it because we are running away from creating our own identity in the eyes of the world, friends lets wake up now and embrace our brethren , from whichever state he is from, if we find he is uneducated then instead of making a comment, please take a moment and feed his mind with some positive and industrious thoughts.

We must be an industrious nation, we must build for others and reap the benefits of our hard work as working and making things will always be rewarded rather than just sitting idle and blaming each other.

Every state is an important part of our country and we must respect each other and appreciate good efforts and try to subdue the bad ideas not the people. - Sanjay Gupta - May 13, 2005


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

What Shri Prabhat has pointed out in his article entitled Why Biharis are discriminated is indeed praiseworthy and the attitude and mentality of the people towards Bihar and Biharis is vehemently condemnable. However, there are some points I, being a Bihari, want to add them to his.

Those with such an aversion for Bihar and Bihari should understand that Biharis are no less than anybody, as far as the talent is concerned. Though the literacy rate Bihar is poorer than that of other States, yet the fact remains that Bihari students have been proving their talent in different competitive exams. It is a fact well known to all that a large number of candidates passing the civil services exam belong to Bihar. Even this year Bihar has produced 158 IAS & IPS, UP being the first 201 in view of its larger area.

Biharis are possessed with countless qualities except a few shortcomings. They are hard working, struggling, audacious, adjusting, sociable, talented and very much competitive. They can get settled anywhere in the world; earn their livelihood in any way. They don’t look forward to others for any sort of support. These features can’t be found in any people of other states.

Corruption, murder, Kidnapping, rape, scam, looting, snatching...all these evils are rampant in almost all the States of India. But in case of Bihar it is much more highlighted by media, causing severe criticism of its people. All are blind to the fact that Mumbai is the haven of criminals, Dada and Bhai. Punjab shelters terrorism, Andhra Pradesh extremists, Kashmir insurgents, and West Bengal infiltrators. UP fosters casteism and Tamil Nadu jingoist crime. - Umesh Kumar - May 19, 2005

No comments: