, PhD, Professor and Deputy Program Director of Sustainability Studies, Akamai University, Hawaii, USA, Professor of Economics and Entrepreneurships, Sumy State University, Ukraine
Nepal is unique in terms of culture, religion, and geography as well as in its Indigenous Communities (IC). There has always been domination by the mainstream culture and religion; however, until recently there was no visible friction and violence between any religious groups and ICs. Within the societal structure, there was an effort to maintain harmonious relationships, at least on the surface. In recent years discord has emerged primarily due to political crises as well as an identity crisis among ICs. In practice, until recently, the majority of the people, including the ICs but with the exception of the hardliner Muslims and Christians, respected or worshiped the same deities one way or another. Social harmony also has been reinforced by the interdependence of the peoples living in Nepal’s different geographical terrains, whose survival has depended on intergroup cooperation. These relationships, however, are breaking down slowly as part of a process of social transformation centered on the evolving identity of ICs, which is having a positive impact on their wellbeing. This paper examines the stake of ICs, which has been a major issue of discussion in the wave of ongoing constitution preparation processes.
This paper summarizes the arguments and counterarguments within the scientific discussion on the issue culture, religion, and geography as well as in its Indigenous Communities (IC). The main pur-pose of the research is to explore the harmonious relationships among various languages and religious as well as indigenous communities. Systematization literary sources indicates that socio-cultural har-monies and inter-relationships among the different religious, ethnic and indigenous communities is building and social transformation is occurring. The relevance of the decision of this scientific prob-lem was social stratification, however social strata are narrowing slowly. Methodological tools of the research methods were empirical completely based on secondary sources and personal observation of about five years of research on the process of social transformation. The object of research is based on Nepal, where about 125 languages are spoken and dominantly Hindu, however Buddhist, Islam, Christianity and other religions have been practiced harmoniously. The paper presents the results of an empirical analysis based on secondary sources and, which showed that paper demonstrates the positive impact of government policy directives on the acceptance of indigenous knowledge and the social wellbeing of ICs. The research empirically confirms and theoretically proves that social and cultural transformation has been occurring in Nepal, however the change pattern is relatively slow. The results of the research can be useful for the socio-cultural researchers as well as for the policy makers and general readers who are willing to know the harmony of social inclusion.
Keywords: indigenous communities (Adhivasi), ethnic group (Janajati), caste system, religion, identity, social transformation
JEL Classification: Z00, Z12.
Cite as: Bhandari, M. P. (2019). Mainstream Religious Domain in Nepal a Contradiction and Conflict of In-digenous Communities in Maintaining the Identity, Race, Gender and Class. SocioEconomic Challenges, 3(1), 99-115. http://doi.org/10.21272/sec.3(1).99-115.2019.
- Bhattachan, Krishna B. (2008). Traditional Local Governance in Nepal. Paper presented in a national seminar on Strengthening Decentralization and Good Governance in Nepal organized by the Political Science Association of Nepal (POLSAN) and Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES), Kathmandu, (April 21, 2002) republished by the Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities (NEFIN), Kusunti, Lalitpur, Nepal. Retrieved from: http://www.nefin.org.np/articles/dr-krishna-b-bhattachan/419-traditional-local-governance-in-nepal.html.
- Bhattachan, Krishna B. and Chemjong, Dambar (2006). International Labor Organization Project to Promote the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (PRO 169) Achieving the Millennium Development Goals among the Indigenous Surels of Nepal, ILO, Geneva, Switzerland. Retrieved from: http://bravo.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/—ed_norm/—normes/documents/publication/wcms_100609.pdf.
- Bhattachan, Krishna B. and Webster, Sarah (2005). Indigenous Peoples, Poverty Reduction and Conflict in Nepal, International Labor Organization, Project to Promote ILO Policy on Indigenous and Tribal Peoples (PRO 169) International Labor Office, CH-1211 Geneva 22, Switzerland.
- Bhattachan, Yasso Kanti (2005) “Consultation and Participation of Indigenous Peoples in Decision-making in Nepal.” Pp. 79-108. In: ILO Convention No. 169 and Peace Building in Nepal. Edited by Sarah Webster and Om Gurung. Kathmandu: NEFIN and ILO, Nepal. Retrieved from: http://ilo-mirror.library.cornell.edu/public/english/standards/norm/egalite/itpp/activity/nepal/yasso.pdf.
- Bhandari, Medani P. (2018). Green Web-II: Standards and Perspectives from the IUCN, Published, sold and distributed by: River Publishers, Denmark / the Netherlands ISBN: 978-87-70220-12-5 (Hardback) 978-87-70220-11-8 (eBook),
- Bhandari, Medani P. and Oli, Krishna P. (2018). The changing roles and impacts of civil society/NGOs in Nepal, Civil Society in the Global South (Palash Kamruzzaman edits.), Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, UK. 70-87.
- CBS (2018). Statistical Year Book Nepal 2017, Government of Nepal, National Planning commission, Central Bureau of Statistics, Ramshahpath, Thapathali, Kathmandu, Nepal https://cbs.gov.np/statistical-year-book-2017/.
- CBS (2001 to 2008). Nepal in figures, Central Bureau of Statistics, National Planning Commission, Government of Nepal, Thapathali, Kathmandu.
- Cebrowski, Arthur K. (2002). The State of Transformation, presentation to Center for Naval Analyses, Crystal City, VA (20 November 2002).
- CIA (2010). Worldfactbook, Nepal The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), US Government, Washington DC. Retrieved from: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/np.html (accessed on 09/23/2010).
- CIFP (2010). Nepal Risk Assessment in Brief, Country Indicators for Foreign Policy (CIFP), Carleton, University, Canada. Retrieved from: http://www.carleton.ca/cifp/app/serve.php/1267.pdf (accessed on 09/23/2010).
- Dahal, G. R. (2006). Governance and institutional structure: An ignored dimension of devolution policy process in forestry (the case of community-based forest management in the Philippines)’, PhD thesis, International and Rural Development Department, University of Reading, Reading, UK.
- Dangal, Rameshwor (2005). Administrative Culture In Nepal: Does It Reflect The Dominant Socio-Cultural Values Of Nepal. A Thesis for the Master of Philosophy in Public Administration, Department of Administration and Organization Theory, University of Bergen, Norway (this document is available at UNPAN – United Nations Public Administration Network).
- Dohrenwend, Bruce P. (1959). Egoism, Altruism, Anomie, and Fatalism: A Conceptual Analysis of Durkheim’s Types, American Sociological Review, 24(4) (Aug., 1959), pp. 466-473.
- Durkheim, Emile (1951). Suicide. Translated by John A. Spaulding and George Simpson, Glencoe, Ill.: Free Press.
- Elder, Joseph W. (1966). Fatalism in India: A Comparison between Hindus and Muslims. Anthropological Quarterly, 39(3), Fatalism in Asia: Old Myths and New Realities (Special Issue), 227-243.
- Fisher, James (1987). Romanticism and Development in Nepalese Anthropology. In Occasional Papers in Anthropology (Ed. James Fisher), Vol. 1. Tribhuvan University. Kathmandu, Nepal.
- Giuseppe da Rovato, Father, (1970). Account of the Kingdom of Nepal; being an account of the consolidation of power within the Catʼhmandu Valley by Pritʼhwinarayan, founder of the Shah Dynasty, during the years, Indian Offset Press, Delhi, India.
- Griffin, D. M., Shepherd K. R., and Mahat T. B. S. (1988). Human Impact on Some Forests of the Middle Hills of Nepal, Part 5. Comparisons, Concepts, and Some Policy Implications, Mountain Research and Development, 8(1), 43-52.
- Government of Nepal (2007). The Interim Constitution of Nepal-ICN, Singhadarbar, Kathamndu, Nepal
- Government of Nepal – GoN (2010) Policies and Programs of the Government of Nepal for the Fiscal Year 2066/067, Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers, Singh Durbar, Kathmandu, Nepal. Retrieved from: http://www.opmcm.gov.np/index.php?param=p6.
- Gurung, Harka, Yogendra Gurung and Chhabi Lal Chidi (1996). Nepal Atlas of Ethnic and Caste Groups, Kathmandu: National Foundation for Development of Indigenous Nationalities, ISBN 99946-823-3-4.
- Gurung, Om (2009). Major Challenges for Implementing ILO Convention 169 in Nepal, Paper Presented in a Three-Day Seminar “Should States Ratify Human Rights Conventions”? Organized by the Center of Advanced Studies, Oslo, Norway (August 18-20, 2009).
- Gyawali, Dipak (2009). Water and conflict: Whose ethics is to prevail? in M. Ramon Llamas, Manuel Ramón Llamas edits Water Ethics: Marcelino Botin Water Forum 2007, Taylor & Francis, Routledge, USA.
- Hamilton, F. B. (1819). An Account of Kingdom of Nepal and of the Territories Annexed to this Domain by the House of Gurkha. Edinburgh: Archibald Constable and Company.
- Hiriyanna, M. (1953) Philosophy of Values, In: H. Bhattacharyya (ed.), The Cultural Heritage of India: Philosophies, Volume 3, 695 pp. Ramakrishna Mission Institute of Culture, Calcutta, India.
- Hodson, B. H. (1817). Essays on the Language, Literature and Religion of Nepal and Tibet. London: Trubner and Company.
- Husain, Asad (1970). British India’s relations with the Kingdom of Nepal, 1857-1947: a diplomatic history of Nepal. George Allen and Unwin Limited, London.
- Lama-Tamang, Mukta (2010). Indigenous peoples’ movement and challenges of ILO C 169 implementation in Nepal, paper on Forum for Development Cooperation with Indigenous Peoples, Forum Conference 2010, Norway (October 24-30, 2010)
- ILO (2011). Origins and history, ILO, Geneva, Switzerland. Retrieved from: http://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/history/lang–en/index.htm.
- ILO-Nepal (2010). Labor and Social Trends in Nepal 2010, International Labor Organization, and National Planning Commission, Government of Nepal, International Labor Office, CH-1211 Geneva 22, Switzerland. Retrieved from: http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/—asia/—ro-bangkok/—ilo-kathmandu/documents/publication/wcms_151322.pdf.
- ILOLEX – 2. 5. 2011). Retrieved from: http://www.ilo.org/ilolex/cgi-lex/ratifce.pl?Nepal (2. 5. 2011) ILOLEX (4. 29. 2011)
- International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs (IWGIA) (2011). What is self-determination, International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs, Copenhagen, Denmark.
- Karan, Pradyumna P. (1960). Nepal, a cultural and physical geography, with the collaboration of William M. Jenkins (1960), University of Kentucky Press (map cited from page 2, greater Nepal).
- Khanal, Yadu Nath (1966). Stray thoughts, Rakesh Press, Delhi, India.
- Kirk Patric, C W. (1811). An Account of the Kingdom of Nepal. London: William Miller.
- Lama-Tamang, Mukta S. (2010). Adivasi Janajati exclusion: Status and trend update (June 2005–April 2009), The Magar Study Center, Kathmandu, Nepal. Retrieved from: http://magarstudiescenter.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/Adivasi_Janajati_draft.pdf.
- National Bureau of Statistics-NCS (2004). Population Monograph of Nepal, National Bureau of Statistics, Government of Nepal, Thapathali, Kathmandu..
- NPC (2017). Demographic Changes of Nepal:Trends and Policy Implications, National Planning Commission, Government of Nepal, National Planning Commission, Kathmandu, Nepal. Retrieved from: https://www.npc.gov.np/images/category/Demographic_Dividend_Report_May_2017_final_for_circulation1.pdf.
- National Panning commission-NPC (2008). National Plan of 2008-2013, National Panning Commission, Government of Nepal, Sidhdarbar, Kathmandu, Nepal.
- Nepali-times (2011). ILO 169: Nepal as a model, Nepali-times, From Issue #541 (18 Feb 2011 – 24 Feb 2011), Kathmandu, Nepal. Retrieved from: http://www.nepalitimes.com/issue/2011/02/18/FromtheNepaliPress/17961.
- Oldfield, N.A. (1880). Sketches from Nepal, London: Allen and Company.
- Panday, Devendra Raj (2005). Democracy and Corruption. Liberal Democracy Nepal Bulletin, 1(2).
- Ortner, Sherry (1978). Sherpas Through Their Rituals. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- Percival, P. (1982). Manava Dharma Sastra or the Institutes of Manu According to the Gloss of Kulluka, Translated by Sir William Jones (AES reprint of 1825 and 1863), Asian Educational Services, New Delhi, India.
- Regmi, D. R. (1960). Ancient Nepal, Firma K.L. Mukhopadhyay, Culcutta, India.
- Roy, Raja Devasish and Henriksen, John B. (2010). Inclusion of Indigenous Peoples’ Rights in the New Constitution of Nepal, International Labor Organization, Geneva, Switzerland. Retrieved from: http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/—ed_norm/—normes/documents/publication/wcms_123847.pdf
- Savada, Andrea Matles (1991). Nepal country studies, United States of America, the Federal Research Division, Country Studies/Area Handbook Program, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. 20540-5220. Retrieved from: http://www.country-data.com/cgi-bin/query/r-9062.html (accessed on 08/26/2010).
- Sharma, P.R. (1977) Caste, Social Mobility and Sanskritization in the Tribal-Hindu Society: A Study of Nepal’s Old Legal Code. Kailash, 5(4), 277-299.
- Srinivas, M. N. (1952). Religion and Society among the Coorgs of South India. Oxford: Clarendon Press [esp. ch. 7, “Hinduism”].
- Thapa, Netra B. (1967) Short history of Nepal, Reviewed by M. D. Moran (in 1967), Rantna Pustak Bhandar, Kathmandu.
- Turin, Mark (2007) Harka’s maps, Three new Nepal atlases are as interesting for what they tell as for what they miss, Nepali-times, From Issue #333 (26 Jan 2007 – 01 Feb 2007), Kathmandu, Nepal. Retrieved from: http://www.nepalitimes.com/issue/333/Nation/13160.
- UNDP (2008) The Dalits of Nepal and a New Constitution, A Resource on the Situation of Dalits in Nepal, their Demands and the Implications for a new Constitution, United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Nepal, UN House, Pulchowk, Kathmandu, Nepal. Retrieved from: http://www.ccd.org.np/new/publications/dalit%20of%20nepal%20and%20a%20new%20constituition.pdf (accessed on 09/23/2010).
- UNDP (2009) Nepal Human Development Report 2009, Nepal, UNDP, Nepal. Retrieved from: http://hdr.undp.org (accessed on 09/23/2010).
- UNESCO (2006) Form and Pattern of Social Discrimination, in Nepal, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization office in Kathmandu (reported by Mr. Dambar Chemjong, Mr. Surendra Mishra, Mr. Sanjeev Pokhrel and Mr. Nabin Rawal). Retrieved from: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0014/001460/146086e.pdf.
- United Nations (1948) Universal Declaration of Human Rights, United Nations, New York, USA. Retrieved from: http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/index.shtml.
- United Nations (2009) State of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division for Social Policy and Development, Secretariat of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, United Nations, New York. Retrieved from: http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/unpfii/documents/SOWIP_web.pdf.
- United Nations (2009) General Assembly, United Nations, New York.
- Whelpton, John (2005) “A Reading Guide to Nepalese History,” Himalaya, the Journal of the Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies: Vol. 25: No. 1, Article 5. Retrieved from: http://digitalcommons.macalester.edu/himalaya/vol25/iss1/5/ (accessed on 08/26/2010).
- Whelpton, John (2005) A history of Nepal, Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from: http://bilder.buecher.de/zusatz/12/12951/12951357_vorw_1.pdf (accessed on 08/26/2010).