Madhesi people

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Madhesi (Immigrants)
Regions with significant populations
   Nepal ±5% total population (2011)[1][2]
Languages
Maithili, Bhojpuri, Awadhi and Nepali
Religion
Hinduism, Buddhism
Related ethnic groups
Indo-Aryan peoples of Gangetic plain of Indo-Nepal Border

The Madheshi (Madhesī, Devnagri: मधेशी) are people of the south-eastern region of Nepal who migrated from nearby Indian states to clear forests in the southern jungles of Nepal in 1970s. In geographical term, Terai means a flatland in the Gangetic Plain in southern Nepal stretching from the foothill of the Himalayan region in the north to the Vindhya region (Vindyachal Mountain) in the south situated in central Nepal. The term Madhesh implies to the Gangetic plain and the Inner Madhesh area bordering Southern Nepal by India and spreading north up to the foothill of Siwalik range. The Terai region, which is mostly a flatland, is geographically and culturally distinct from the hills. According to the population census in 2011, it occupies 17 per cent of total area and 45.03 per cent of the total population of Nepal.

Area and population

The total land area in the 20 Terai districts is 34,109 km2 which accounts for 23.1% of the country's total area but it includes innter[clarification needed] Terai regions and Sivalik Hills. In 2001, 48.4% of the country's total population of 23.2 million lived in Terai districts with a density of 329 persons/km2. While in 2011 more than 50% of the total population was reported to be living in Terai plain and Vitri Madhesh together cover 20%-25% of the country's total area. Tharu people are the true indigenous people of Terai regions or Madhesh and consider other Bihari Madhesis as the latecomers Biharis. These latecomers Biharis are known as the madhesis in Nepal.

Etymology

The word madhesi or madheshi is the adjectival form of madhesh, which usually refers to the Terai region. Madhesh (मधेश) derives from the Sanskrit words Madhya Desh (मध्य देश), meaning "middle country."[3]

Religion

While the majority of Madhesis are caste-observant Hindus, there is great cultural and religious diversity in the Madhesh. Two closely synchronized religious groups – Hindus -and Buddhists – live there. The social structure of Madhesi caste Hindus is somewhat similar to that of Bihari Hindus from Bihar, the Indian state form where they migrated 30-40 years.[4][5][6]

Language

Maithili and Tharu are the mother languages of Madhesi and Tharu people respectively.[7]

Demonym

  • Madhesi
  • Bihari
  • Dhoti

See also

References

  1. ^ "Social Classes and Stratification". Nepal: A country study (Savada, Andrea Matles, ed.). Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress of the USA (1991).  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  2. ^ Shrestha, Manesh (2008-03-19). "Three killed in pre-election violence in Nepal". CNN online. Retrieved 2011-05-07. 
  3. ^ "Ethnic Groups". Nepal: A country study (Savada, Andrea Matles, ed.). Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress of the USA (1991).  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  4. ^ "Religion and Society". Nepal: A country study (Savada, Andrea Matles, ed.). Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress of the USA (1991).  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  5. ^ "Hinduism". Nepal: A country study (Savada, Andrea Matles, ed.). Federal Research Division of the Library of Congress of the USA (1991).  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  6. ^ Lawoti, Mahendra (2005). Towards a democratic Nepal: inclusive political institutions for a multicultural society. SAGE. pp. 91–98, 126. ISBN 0-7619-3318-2. 
  7. ^ Yadava, Yogendra P. (2001). "4" (PDF). Population Monograph of Nepal I. Government of Nepal, Central Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 2011-05-07. 

Further reading

Deepak Chaudhary. 2011. Tarai/Madhesh of Nepal; An Anthropological Study. Kathmnadu: Ratna Pustak Bhandar.