Ishwor Luitel

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Published On: May 6, 2018 08:37 AM NPT By: Ishwor Luitel

The beautiful word ‘khate’

The beautiful word ‘khate’

I have been hearing this particular word “khate” since my childhood. My mind was like everyone else’s at that time. I was judgmental to the homeless kids, and considered this word ugly. I though it carried ugly meaning and it is used for those who collect garbage, sleep in road, have no home and who roam around the city carrying big sacks on the shoulder. Likewise, khates are the ones who smell dendrite as an intoxicant and beg around streets.

But few years ago, I removed this concept that was put in my head by the society. I realized if those who collect garbage from road, whose home is road ,who roam here and there carrying those big sacks in their shoulders is addressed as khate and disrespected, then for me the meaning of the word ‘khate’ is ‘independently struggling for the betterment of life’. But if the meaning of the word khate is considered to be how my society defines, then khate is the one who throws garbage on the road and not the one who picks it up and cleans the road no matter what motive they may have behind it. For, cleaning is always better than dirtying. 

Khate is the one who sleeps on the road by the effect of alcohol or drugs, not the one who is sleeping in the road because their home is road. Khate is the one who gives loads to carry to someone who is sick, old, poor and weaker, not the one who carries big sack for living. Khate is the one who smells cocaine with father’s money, not the one who smells dendrites just to make them forget the coldn and hunger. Khate is the one who sells his home for gambling in the casino or drinking alcohol or smoking or using toxic things, not the one who is born homeless. Khate is the one who begs to father for drugs, not the one who begs because he or she is hungry. 

If my society doesn’t address these people khate, then for me khate is one respectful and beautiful word. If somebody tells someone khate with no matter what meaning they may assume, I personally would consider it as a compliment. Loitering around in the KFC with father’s money and addressing the one who is outside searching for food in the garbage for living as ‘khate’ is insane.

Don’t disrespect anyone just because of their appearance, just because they are homeless, just because they are too young or old and beg to live, just because they collect the garbage for living that you throw, just because they smell dendrite because they don’t have anything else to warm their bodies and make them forget hunger and sleep. If you are able to give when someone is asking for something, then you give what you have. Try to make a better world for someone who is suffering and if you can’t do that, then don’t disrespect them. Don’t address the homeless people khate, instead try to help them if possible and teach others also to do so. Don’t teach your children to abuse and disrespect them, but teach your children to grow into good human beings who can create better world for all.

Being able to do something to create positive change around us, no matter how small, is always greater than waiting for someone else to come and do it. It’s not ‘me’ but ‘we’ that can change the world. So let us work in a way that we can change the world for these homeless people that we call khate.

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