RANJU DODUM | 27 JUNE, 2017
ITANAGAR: The Jainsem, the traditional dress of women of the Khasi tribe from Meghalaya, is usually worn over a red blouse and a cylindrical lower. While the dress traditionally comes in bright yellow, modern iterations come in many colours.
For woman of the Khasi community, the dress is not just a symbol of their longstanding culture but also a part of their daily lives. For an ‘elite’ club in the national capital though, it is a maid’s uniform.
Tailin Lyngdoh, was dressed in her Jainsem on Sunday afternoon when she was asked to leave the Delhi Golf Club by two staff members, Ajit Pal and Sumita Thakur, on the grounds that her dress resembled a maid’s clothes.
Lyngdoh was accompanying Nivedita Barthakur, an entrepreneur from Assam, and who is employed as her son’s governess.
Barthakur had first taken to Facebook to voice her concern over the incident, calling it an example of “bigotry, chauvinism, and ignorance”.
She said that she was part of a group of nine people who were guests of a longstanding member of the club.
Speaking to The Citizen, Barthakur said that such incidents keep happening to people from the Northeast in the national capital but that this particular incident was “especially overboard”.
She said that the entire episode was “humiliating” especially that such practices are happening in today’s day and age.
“Why can’t she be given the dignity and that you and I can be afforded,” she asked and added that the club would not have acted in this way if she was with a white woman.
Barthakur informed that
Lyngdoh has been with her family for the past decade and has travelled the world with her wearing her Jainsem and never faced any issues. She said that Lyngdoh is a “proud Khasi woman who is an asset and a dignified lady”.
She also said that she had approached Conrad Sangma, an MP from Meghalaya on the issue and is trying to reach out to Union Minister of State for Home Affairs, Kiren Rijiju, who is from Arunachal Pradesh.
Barthakur also alleged that the club is refusing to apologise and is fabricating a lie that it was closed on Sunday.
The Citizen has reached out to Delhi Golf Club seeking a comment.