Post War Reconstruction, Transitional Justice and the Politics of Everyday Life: Case Study of Bardiya
This paper aims to explore contested and complex post-war transition processes following the end of Maoist insurgency in 2006, taking the case study of Bardiya. As a district with the highest number of enforced disappearance of civilians, predominantly belonging to Tharu ethnic community, by the state security forces during the Maoist conflict period, Bardiya continues to remain a primary focal point in discourse around transitional justice in Nepal. In this paper, the focus will not only be on how transitional justice, an issue that is highly pertinent yet still unresolved, is understood and experienced by victims themselves. But also, how pre-war societal structures, memories and wartime experiences have all shaped post-war transition processes in Bardiya with particular focus on everyday livelihood negotiations. Drawing upon extensive ethnographic and historical data (collected as part of Borderlands project) on Dalla village, which is located in the Bardiya National Park’s buffer zone, this paper will provide an in-depth analysis on how the discourse around justice, reparation and state accountability are understood at a marginal space, and how those discourses are informed by and situated within increased political consciousness and everyday struggles of lives. Hence, the focus will not only be on political transition but also how social and economic transitions take place in post war setting.