Two Bihars- Bahubali and Mushhar

Last Sunday, I saw two interesting reports. Both are good enough to shock any sensitive person of the country.

Here is the story of the Bahubali.

Anant Singh has become known to millions in one day courtesy media, and all for something that must ashamed any honourable person. His men assaulted media persons who wanted to finds out information about Resma Khatoon. Relenting to the media pressure, the CM had to get arrested Anant Singh. But who is this Anant Singh? I had never read about him. Here is something.

Anant Singh prospered under the patronage of his brother Dilip Singh, a minister in the Rabri Devi government. And at the opportunate time, he joined the present ruling party of Bihar. His story may charm some: When a dethroned Lalu Prasad Yadav put his pet horse, the polka-dotted Pawan, on sale at Asia’s largest cattle fair at Sonepur last year, Anant bought it by using a fake purchaser for Rs 1.11 crore. The grapevine in Patna had it that Lalu’s steed only heeded commands in English. Anant immediately renamed Rudal, after a Bihar folk hero, and said, “Abhi dekhte hain yeh angrezi samajhta hai ki Hindi (Let’s see whether he follows English or Hindi).” Rudal has company. A buffalo that Anant recently bought for Rs 65,000 reportedly bathes in the master’s swimming pool. As it seems, Anant would have used the village pond in his childhood for himself as well as for his buffalo. He is only living his childhood. And perhaps like all the modern Gabbaras, a perfect evening for Anant, Anand Mohan, Pappu Yadav, Shahabuddin, Sadhu and Subhash means party with lot of drinks spent in the comfort of one’s own home in the company of senior cops and politicians with a mujra performance by “scantily clad girls gyrating to Bhojpuri songs” to keep them all entertained.

Another report dealt with Musahar community:

According to my memory of the childhood, Musahars used to be pretty well built. I saw some Musahar wrestling with some higher caste ones too. But today things have changed. They got isolated and left out. A 2003 study by a student of the Indian Institute of Rural Management found that 90 per cent of the Musahar children below six suffer from malnutrition.
Musahar keep on shifting with their meager possessions: string charpoys, kitchen utensils and a few tattered garments.

Musahars is one of India’s most marginalized communities. They live in separate locations or habitations. They are believed to be tribals evicted when the British cleared forestlands. Powerful landlords usurped small plots given in compensation. According to a study, 60 per cent of Musahars were landless. Some own just small waterlogged, infertile plots.

As regards the origin of the community’s name, some Musahars claim it is because they ate rats. According to some, the name was given because of the tribe’s practice of ferreting out grain from rats’ burrows. I have seen them digging the mouse burrows in paddy field and taking out the grains from the holes. Naturally that can’t be a way of living.

The report was horrifying. The Musahars today hardly get two chapattis a day. I don’t understand why with so much publicized employment guarantee programme in almost all districts, Musahars are in such a pitiable condition. Why can’t hundreds of NGOs claiming to work for such people concentrate on the community such as Musahars and help them with all that can be done within the frame works of so many government programmes?

Both the stories are shocking and gloomy. But while one must go to the prison for the different crimes committed as don, the second require humane handling for upliftment. Musahars must be part of the inclusive growth. They can be trained for manufacturing handicrafts. A special programme must educate their children by providing all expenditures till they master some skills or get sufficiently educated and employed.

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