Doom Para (neighborhood)

  When I was reading Vasant Moon’s autobiography Growing Up Untouchable in India, I was reminiscing about an untouchable community beside my own neighborhood. The name of my neighborhood is “Moulovi Para.” There are another four neighborhoods around my own neighborhood, and in the west side of my neighborhood, there is a neighborhood of the untouchable people which is called “Doom Para.” The people of this community are known as “Doom.” Who are these dooms? Let me clarify.

From my childhood, I have been noticing that people of my community and other two communities hate the dooms. What’s their mistake? Their one and only mistake is that they were born in a caste called “Shudro.”  According to Hinduism, there are four castes of people, and “Shudro” is the lowest caste. There is a superstition followed by people years after years is that those people who are born in this lowest community might be  worst sinners in their previous lives, so in this rebirth, God has sent them in the lowest caste. As a result, they are considered as the impure people who are untouchable for the other people. If other Hindus touch them, it is believed that their caste will be impure, and their prayer will not be granted to the God (What a biased God!). However, I am not sure whether this superstition is true or false, but I heard about Hinduism from my family and neighbors.

Now, I want to share some of my own experiences with these people. The Doom Para is on the way of our school, and there is a shortcut road to the school through this neighborhood. It is needless to say that it was forbidden for us to go through the Doom Para, because they were untouchable. I can remember, when any man from Doom Para came to our neighborhood, naughty children used to irritate them saying slung languages. I can reminisce about the laundryman. Every time when he came to our house, he couldn’t enter. If any doom unfortunately entered into the house, my mother and my aunt used to sweep the floor of the whole house. There is a big pond in Doom para. One day my elder sisters and cousins went to swim there. One man from our neighborhood saw them, and he informed my uncle, who is very radical. As a result, my uncle punished my sisters and cousins ruthlessly. Can you imagine how much people hate the dooms?

Finally, I want to share one interesting thing. Most of these people maintain their livelihood as fishermen (Jailla as an inferior name), barbers, or laundrymen. Although people hate them, and don’t touch them, they eat fish caught by dooms, and go to the barbers and laundrymen as well. Isn’t it ridiculous????

3 Responses to Doom Para (neighborhood)

  1. ansadhikari says:

    Hey Tausifa,
    I understand the Hindus’ concept of untouchability because I too have seen with my own eyes. Yes, it is true, and – of course – ridiculous that “high” caste people lose their ethinicity if they are touched by “low” caste people. However, it is humans’ misconception to say that they would not be granted by god if a Dalit or a Doom touches the upper caste people. It is not the gods who have said that they will only listen to “pure” people not to “impure.” I am a bit offended with your comment to god as “What a biased god!”None of the god is bias. It is we, the humans, who grow superstitious beliefs in our mind and continue it till the end of our life.Overall, I liked your ending of the post, where you presented the real practises of “higher” caste people showing the dependency upon the “lower” caste people for their daily chores, but still calling them as untouchables.
    Good night 🙂

  2. tasnia says:

    Dear Tausifa,
    I have also the same question what you have is that why people eat fish caught by them, and go to barbershor whereas they hate them so much. I think all the people have the same right. How can a person be untouchable where humans are the supiriors of all the creatures? I don’t know. Do you know?

  3. Prince says:

    Dear Tausifa,
    Whatever you’ve posted its a common scene in our society. I’m agree with ansadhikari and tasnia. But one another thing is missing. What about the “Goldsmith”? Where i’ve seen anybody hate those people, i always ask them ” Can you imagine a happy life without Goldsmith, Fisherman, Laundryman, Barber”?

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