In my own country, I had to lie about myself. No I am not a fugitive. I am simply a person with Bihari roots.
Yesterday I went to see a flat (we’ve got to shift), and the landlady kept asking us, among other directives like “don’t bring girls here…”, “Is any of you Bihari? Because we don’t want to have Biharis in our house.”. Even though we kept telling her that one of us is a Marathi (to which she looked visible pleased) and I am a Bengali (owing to the “truth” that I come from Calcutta), it felt wrong, and I decided not to ever return to that place.
I never came across anyone in my 20 year long stay in Calcutta, or year long stay in various places in Jharkhand, who would tell me that they would not want a Marathi, Tamilian or Gujarati as a tenant.
Having said that, she has not done anything illegal. She owns the place and she has the right to have her reservations. But the underlying assumptions and intent behind that decision disturbs me.
Why do I need to lie about myself in my own country?