Republica Rano Devi, mother of the first Madhes martyr Ramesh Mahato, weeps while remembering her son in this recent photo.
LAHAN, Jan 18: On January 19, 2007, Ramesh Mahato became the first martyr of Madhes movement after he got killed in course of the movement. Madhes-centric political parties still recall the fateful day he died as they assemble every year at Sahid Ramesh Chowk to reflect on his important contributions to the movement.
Almost a decade after the incident, two leaders close to the United Democratic Madhesi Front and Federal Alliance addressed the mass at the chowk on Tuesday, according to the organizer Krishna Bahadur Yadav.
Intellectuals argued that the Madhesi community experienced positive changes after the first movement. “After the first movement, there was a considerable number of Madhesi people in the Constituent Assembly. Madhesis got identity in the constitution itself,” said Bijay Prasad Mishra, an analyst of the Madhes movement.
“But the situation did not remain favorable for long. The disgruntled Madhesis were forced to hit the streets again as their demands remained unfulfilled,” he added.
Another analyst, Tula Narayan Sah, claimed that the Madhes movement has lost its achievement a decade after the movement.
“Constitutional identity, representations, and political power gained after the first Madhes movement has been lost. Ten years on, Madhes has lagged behind in all aspects. The current Madhes movement is to bring the old glory back,” he said.
Sah believes that the achievements of the Madhes movement could not be institutionalized because of weak leadership to implement their agendas. “That's why the Madhesis lost the already gained achievements,” he said.
Meanwhile, parents of the first Madhes martyr Ramesh Mahato are still sobbing in memory of their son. Remembering her beloved son, Rani Devi said countless women too lost their sons while fighting for their rights. “Like all these mothers, I too am very saddened as the recent movement ended without any achievement,” she said.
In the recent Madhes movement, 52 protestors achieved martyrdom. While urging the leaders to respect equality, Maya Devi said the leaders should stop further killings.
“Several Madhesi leaders became ministers one after another. But what did the Madhesi people gain? The sacrifice of several good sons like Ramesh turned out to be in vain. Although I lost my son, let none be deprived of their rights,” she added.