Saturday, 29 November 2014

WHY there is NO history of Tamang community in Nepal?

"History is the version of past events that people have decided to agree upon."
- Napoleon Bonaparte

"History is a gallery of pictures in which there are few originals and many copies."
- Alexis de Tocqueville  (1805-1859),  French political thinker and historian

“History is always written by the winners. When two cultures clash, the loser is obliterated, and the winner writes the history books-books which glorify their own cause and disparage the conquered foe. As Napoleon once said, 'What is history, but a fable agreed upon?”
― Dan Brown, a renowned American author

Ex-Gurkha Army, Mr. Tenzing Limbu enquired me asking question, "WHY there is NO history of  Tamang in Nepal ?"

I also wondered WHY there is NO Tamang history in Nepal written by Nepalese historians and I came to realise from the Civil Code "Muluki Ain"  written in 1854 AD by Prime Minister Janga Bahadur Rana Tamang has been classified under the category of  "Enslavable Alcohol Drinkers" (Masinya Matwali). It is said that it codified social codes in practice for several centuries in Nepal that was rooted in Vyavahāra (traditional Hindu legal procedure), Prāyaścitta (avoidance and removal of sin) and Ācāra (the customary law of different castes and communities).

According to renowned historian of Nepal Mr. Janak Lal Sharma (Himal year 5, number 1) says that the Tamangs are ancient people who are living in the surrounding of Kathmandu valley and its neighboring districts.

Earlier Tamangs were known by various terminologies. Among these, Murmi is a popular term. Hamilton in 1802, Hudson in 1847, and Macdonald in 1989 have used the term Murmi for Tamang people. Some scholars are of the opinion that during the regime of King Tribhuvan the then Prime Minister Bhim Shumsher had formally used the term Tamang for the very first time under the request of Sardar Bahadur Jungabir, who was also from the Tamang nationality. In the 13th century, King Boom Degon (1253–1280), who had ruled the present Mustang region of Nepal, has scriptured the word Tamang in his genealogy. This is the oldest written document ever found about the usage of the word Tamang that exclusively refers to the Tamang nationality of Nepal. There still prevails differences about the origin of the word Tamang.

From Nepal's historical evidences it has proven that Tamang community has been attempted to Genocide by Nepal's past rulers because they were very much aggressive towards Gorkha rulers. As mentioned by Neupane, Govinda in his article  titled "Nepalko Jatiya Prashna (Ethnic Question of Nepal)" published in 2000 that "The Tamangs revolted twice against King Rana Bahadur Shah and King Girvan Bikram Shah in 1873, but they could not succeed."

However, Magar, Gurung, Rai and Limbu had agreement and support to Gorkha's king. Thus they became their troops and later sold to the East India Company as a Gorkha Soldier whereas Tamang were forbidden to join to deprived them socio-economically. Thus kept them as a slave of royal families and palace in the Kathmandu valley exploiting their male's physical strength and women as a sex slave of a royal families. It is just a common sense to understand if you have BRAIN to think in our head, heart to feel and hands to do.

As I said Tamang community was attempted to GENOCIDE here the Genocide Convention adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 9 December 1948 defined Genocide and considered Crime of Genocide in international law in the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide.

In the Article II: In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

Article III: The following acts shall be punishable:

(a) Genocide;

(b) Conspiracy to commit genocide;

(c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide;

(d) Attempt to commit genocide;

(e) Complicity in genocide.

Therefore, to expect writing of history about Tamang by Nepalese rulers is almost impossible because those community which has been attempted to Genocide by rulers how they can think of writing about them.

Anyway, I love reading history to understand the root cause and reason of WHY some people and communities are so much deprived, marginalised, discriminated, dominated, and disadvantaged and others are very much advantages and feel so much proud of being belong to such groups of advantage. Besides, I love studying history because

“If you don't know history, then you don't know anything. You are a leaf that doesn't know it is part of a tree. ”
― Michael Crichton, an American best-selling author, physician, producer, director, and screenwriter

"Study history, study history. In history lies all the secrets of statecraft."
- Winston Churchill

"Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it."
- Edmund Burke (1729-1797), an Irish statesman, political theorist, and philosopher

“Study the past if you would define the future.”
― Confucius


  1. so lets make a tamang history, lets get united, take interviews of oldest living tamang people and agree upon the facts. after all, the process is such, and the trend is such, doesn't make sense?

  2. Our elderly people are the living history. Do not underestimate what they have seen, experienced and gone through in life, that are very important to the generations to come. We must know from where we come, and thus we know where to go. We know history is only written of those who win, it means our people were always in the loosing side. We know Tamang people are one of the most socially marginalized groups in Nepal, that is why we do not have our histories. What ever we have are mostly the negative and those of the struggles. So I totally agree with Laxmi Tamang to involve in doing such an wonderful work. Fyafulla!


  4. laxmi jee can you send me your email address ? my email is

  5. Like the quote ‘“History is always written by the Victors. When two cultures clash, the loser is obliterated, and the winner writes the history books-books which glorify their own cause and disparage the conquered foe’. As the Gorkhali kingdom expanded and Nepal became a Hindu state ,the Tamangs ( Mongoliod and Buddhists) found themselves on the fringes of that society (governed by Manu Smriti) and when this is so it is but difficult to write and preserve your own history.

    Tamangs are decendants of Tibet's great emperor Songtsen Gampo's army from the 7th Century.
    ). The origin of the word ‘Tamang’ cannot be explained in Nepali can only be attributed to and explained in Tibetan . And the most obvious translation is as :
    Ta in Tibetan – means Horse and Mang (short for Mang mi or Mag-mi ) - means Army which militarily translates into ‘The Cavalry’ .

    Tshering Jorden