Nepal – the country of the Buddha and the Mt. Everest

Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without – Buddha

Archive for the ‘Asia’ Category

SIKKIM: Gangtok show for Prashant film – India premiere to be in sikkim

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 31, 2011


Gangtok, July 29: Prashant Tamang’s third Nepali film Kina Maya Ma will premiere in India with a screening

Chunnilal Ghimire at the news conference in Gangtok. Picture by Prabin Khaling

in Gangtok on August 27.

Gangtok-based filmmaker Chunnilal Ghimire said the premiere would be at Vajra cinema hall. “After the movie runs in Gangtok for some time, we will take it to Darjeeling and Kalimpong for screening,” said Ghimire. This is the first feature film of Channel Ace Productions run by Ghimire.

Although a love story, the film has references to the Gorkhaland movement in Darjeeling, the hometown of Indian Idol 3 winner Prashant, who plays the lead role.

If Sony’s talent hunt through the music reality show launched Prashant as a singer four years ago, it also sowed the seeds of a new party that now controls the Darjeeling hills.

In 2007, the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha was born after its president Bimal Gurung cashed in on the strong anti-Subash Ghisinghsentiment that swept through the hills during the campaign to help Prashant win the contest.

The GNLF chief had refused to publicly back Prashant even as the entire Gorkha community in Bengal and across the country put its collective might behind the singer.

Prashant won the September 2007 contest and bagged a Rs 1-crore music contract with Sony.

In Kina Maya Ma (why in love), Prashant is a singer from Nepal who falls in love with a girl from Sikkim. According to the director, in the film, Prashant gets stranded in Sikkim while returning to Nepal because of a “strike” in the neighbouring hills, a reference to Darjeeling and the statehood agitation there. Read the rest of this entry »


Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

NEW DELHI: Bharatiya Gorkha Parisangh meets Minister for Development of North East Region

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 31, 2011

The Himalayan Beacon

The delegates in conversation with the minister. Click on the image to enlarge.

29th July 2011, New Delhi: A delegation of Bharatiya Gorkha Parisangh comprising Parisangh Secretary General Sukman Moktan, Gen Sec CPC Munish Tamang, National Co-ordinator of Gorkhaland Task Force R. Moktan, Central Office Incharge B. M. Pradhan and National Executive Member Navin Subba met the Minister for Development of North East Region (DONEAR) Pawan Singh Ghatowar at his office today at Vigyan Bhawan Annexe in New Delhi.

Click on the image above to enter Bharatiya Gorkha Parisangh's Portal at GorkhapediaClick on the image above to enter Bharatiya Gorkha Parisangh’s Portal at Gorkhapedia Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

All eyes on her: Pak foreign minister makes debut – Hindustan Times

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 26, 2011

February, has become the face of Pakistani diplomacy at a critical



time, despite questions over her youth and inexperience.Hina Rabbani Khar, aged just 34 and the first woman to be appointed foreign minister of Pakistan, will be thrust into the spotlight when she holds talks with her Indian counterpart this week. Khar, who was only appointed last week after serving as a junior foreign minister  since February, has become the face of Pakistani diplomacy at a critical time, despite questions over her youth and inexperience.


She will make a high-profile debut at Wednesday’s talks between Pakistan and India — one of the world’s most fraught cross-border relationships which has led to war three times since 1947.

Few breakthroughs are expected during the meeting between Khar and Indian Foreign Minister SM Krishna, who is 45 years her senior, as the two countries make their first contacts at that level in one year.

The nuclear-armed rivals came to the brink of conflict as recently as 2002 and frictions have remained high since 2008 when Pakistan-based militants were blamed for attacks on Mumbai in which 166 people were killed.

All eyes on her: Pak foreign minister makes debut – Hindustan Times.

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Police arrest Mumbai blasts suspect

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 26, 2011

Indo-Asian News Service
Kathmandu, July 26, 2011
A Nepali man, believed to be in his early 40s, has been arrested from capital city Kathmandu on the suspicion that he had links to this month’s serial blasts in Mumbai which killed 24 people and injured nearly 150, Nepal’s official media said. Mohammad Zahir, a resident of Sarlahi district in Nepal’s Terai plains near the Indian border, was arrested by Nepal Police’s anti-terrorism cell on the basis of intelligence reports, the state-run Gorkhapatra daily reported Tuesday.

The man was said to have been conducting suspicious activities from his rented apartment in Baluwatar, an upmarket area in the capital where the  official residence of the Prime Minister is located.

He was found to have had phone conversations about the Mumbai blasts as well as sent text messages on his mobile phone, the daily said. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Next Mars Rover Will Land In 96-Mile-Wide Crater

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 25, 2011

First rich people will migrate to Mars. For their business, they start to take other people from the earth. So do not worry if you are not rich enough to migrate to Mars. When Mars will be polluted too much, by that time this earth will get better in their absence and they will migrate to the earth again  to live in better place and spoil the earth another time.

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Posted in Asia, Technology | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Agam Singh Giri

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 17, 2011

The Himalayan Beacon

Agam Singh Giri, a poet of distinction, is regarded as one who best represented the Indian Nepalese (Gorkha) people

Agam Singh Giri

in Nepali literature. His five poetical collections are Yaad – Remembrance, Atama Vyathaa) – Anguish, mine, Aashu – Tears, Jivan Geet – Life’s songs, Youdha r Yoodhaa – War and Warrior, Jaleko Pratiwimba r Roeko Pratidhawni – A burning image and a weeping echo. The first collection was published in 1955 and the last one was published posthumously in 1978 and it was awarded the first Bhanu Puraskar in 1979 by the Nepali Academy of West Bengal.

Giri wrote of sadness felt incessantly by him and a rather over-burdensome sadness prevades his poems. No product of any personal trauma, yet this sadness was intrinsic to Giri’s own nature. The poet’s painful realisation of the sad plight of Gorkhas made it later more acute and the poet discursive. Nevertheless a majority of the best poems of Giri fall in the later category of his poems. In his first phase the poet alternated between inwardly cognizing his sadness as though in purity when poetry was for him ‘a painful expression of an accursed life’ and focusing it outward and bearing it in fusion with other feelings as an in-grown aspect of the existing social reality. The second choice or tendency perceptibly gained on the first.

Of the Indian Nepalis or Gorkhas, who, Giri felt, are today only a faint shadow of their former glorious self, he says: Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Dalai Lama Birthday Rallies Banned By Nepal Bans Tibetan Rallies On

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 7, 2011

Nepalese certainly don’t want the repetition of 2008 riots by Tibetan refugees. And India could try to fish in the dirty water as usual with its neighborin­g countries. This point also could be very important here. India could not establish good relationsh­ip with its neighbors, however; banning rallies should not be happened. Just carefulness is necessary.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

SRI LANKA: Returnees struggle in post-war zone

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 5, 2011

THUNUKKAI, 5 July 2011 (IRIN) – More than two years after Sri Lanka’s decades-long civil war officially ended, returnees to remote villages face tough times and uncertain futures, despite governmental and international efforts at reconstruction.

“Everything that we had earned in 50 years, we lost in months,” Supiah Arumugam, 52, and a father of two, told IRIN. Arumugam returned to his home village of Thunukkai, deep in Mullaitivu District in the island’s north and once under the control of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), in March 2010. He and his family had fled the violence two years previously.

Seven months after the government declared victory over the LTTE in May 2009, the Ministry of Economic Development launched the Northern Recovery Project in December 2009 to accelerate development in the conflict-affected Vanni. Of some 120,000 resettled families in the Vanni, the ministry estimates about 29,000 have directly benefited from projects, while 56,000 families have benefited indirectly.

But families such as Arumugam’s are returning to a small fraction of what they had and reconstruction is a slow process.

Before the war, Arumugam had a large farm with hundreds of livestock. Since his return, he has battled to find an income and his belongings are few: “I don’t have a house, only eight chickens and a bicycle.”

Like most, he says he has survived the past 15 months on the US$230 initially given by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) through the government to set up semi-permanent living quarters. Supplemental cash-for-work programmes coordinated by the government and funded by the World Bank also helped pay the bills for six months. “Life is a struggle,” he said.

For more click here

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Jhapa CDO directs to demolish road encroaching Nepali territory

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 2, 2011

JHAPA, July 2:

The Chief District Officer of Jhapa Geha Nath Bhandari has directed concerned authorities to demolish the road constructed by the contractors of Bihar State of India encroaching Nepali territory at the Indo-Nepal border.  Following the direction from CDO Bhandari, Indian contractor Juber Alam had ordered his people immediately to dismantle the 200 meter long road constructed along the border.  The international law forbids construction of roads and buildings and to dig or plough at the International border areas.

The encroached part of the rural road constructed by the Khaniyabad Panchayat of Kishangunj district of Bihar at the no-mans-land situated at  Khajurgachhi VDC-1 of the district which is some 90-kilometers away from Jhapa district headquarters Bhadrapur, has been dismantled. The road construction works has been halted after Phattepur based Indian Seema Surakshya Bal (SSB) commander L A Singh agreed CDO Bhandari’s suggestion to resume constructed only after demarcation of the no mans


Posted in Asia | Leave a Comment »

Hydro-diplomacy: a neglected opportunity for Nepal and India

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 30, 2011

Rajeev Ranjan Chaturvedy and David M. Malone

Existing water treaties are in India’s favour, which troubles Nepal and prevents the much needed development of hydro-projects there.

Water is currently a source of some tension between India and Nepal but could become the greatest asset to the relationship if a more confident, respectful and cooperative approach is engineered by the two governments.

India’s ever-increasing energy requirements speak to its potentially most important interest in Nepal — the latter’s largely untapped hydro-power capacity. A major part of the downstream discharge of the Ganga is contributed by flows either originating in Nepal or transiting Nepal from sources in Tibet, most notably the Kosi, Gandak and Karnali river systems. Because of the terrain, Nepal also provides the best, if not the only, option for downstream flood control and dry season augmentation. A change in course of the Kosi in 2008 caused massive flooding in Bihar (as well as in Nepal), displacing millions and occasioning much loss of life.

Early negotiations

The first recorded water resource negotiations between Nepal and India occurred between 1910 and 1920 when British India needed to harness the Sarda (Mahakali) river, which formed the western boundary between Nepal and British India, to develop irrigation in the United Province (now Uttar Pradesh). Nepal agreed to the 1920 Sarda treaty, involving an exchange of territory, but not an advantageous one for Nepal.

India enjoys most of the benefits of the Kosi and Gandak treaties (of 1954 and 1959), leading to the construction of dams primarily irrigating and protecting Indian lands. The outcome was viewed by many in Nepal as a “sell out” of their natural resources (although it was resistance in Nepal that prevented construction of larger dams that would have accrued more benefits to that country).

However, since then, the Nepalis have learned the value of their consent to India’s plans pertaining to water, and have expressed this mostly through the blocking of hydro development in Nepal that would also benefit India. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Asia | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

Rising river threatens to flood wide areas in eastern Nepal, India

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 27, 2011

By: The Associated Press

KATMANDU, Nepal – Officials say rising water levels in a river known for flooding in eastern Nepal could cause it to burst its banks and inundate large areas of villages.

Disaster prevention engineer Mohan Bhattarai says rain is continuing to fall and water levels on the Kosi river already have exceeded the danger level.

The river about 250 miles (400 kilometres) southeast of Kathmandu is known for flooding large areas in Nepal and across the border in India.

Bhattarai said Monday that workers are attempting to enforce the river’s banks.

Nepal’s monsoon season began earlier this month and lasts until September. The rains often trigger landslides in mountain areas and floods in the southern plains.


Posted in Asia | Leave a Comment »

Development plans along Indo-Nepal border in limbo

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 27, 2011

BAHRAICH: A number of schemes being run by the Centre for development of Indo-Nepal border area are in limbo owing to the laxity of the officials.

Reportedly, under its Border Area Development plan, the Centre had released Rs 14 crore and Rs 8.40 crore in 2009-10 and 2010-11, respectively, for the development of three districts — Balrampur, Shravasti and Bahraich — in Devipatan division along the Nepal border. The funds were to be used for construction of roads, electrification, and setting up of primary health centres and educational institutes.

However, owing to the lax attitude of officials the projects remain pending.  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Asia | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

India and China wrestle for influence in turbulent Nepal as civil war fears rise

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 23, 2011

Two giant neighbours employ different tactics in popularity contest, with Beijing pulling ahead

By Jonathan Manthorpe, Vancouver Sun

As the Himalayan nation of Nepal struggles to find a political solution to years of civil war, the country has become a battleground for strategic influence between its two giant neighbours, India and China.

All the indications are that China is winning as it employs far more deft tactics of diplomacy, and economic and military aid than its rivals in New Delhi.

India, in contrast, has on several occasions been exposed as using the kind of heavy-handed and hectoring tactics it employs all too frequently when dealing with its junior partners in the South Asia region.

This is more than a popularity contest between Beijing and New Delhi among the power brokers of Kathmandu. Nepal and its 30 million people occupy some highly strategic geography between India and Chinese-occupied Tibet.

This is a region where New Delhi and Beijing have several unresolved territorial disputes and there are regular skirmishes. Both countries are upgrading their roads, railways and airstrips along their borders so as to be able to move their armies swiftly to the front if need be.

Nepal became particularly fertile ground for Indian and Chinese rivalry after November 2005, with an agreement to end the country’s decade-long civil war in which Maoist insurgents battled the forces of a corrupt and dissolute monarchy.

Elections early in 2008 for a 601-member Constituent Assembly led to the end of the monarchy.

King Gyanendra was replaced by President Ram Baran Yadav as head of state.

But there has been almost no progress in drawing up a new constitution since then. That work was meant to be completed within two years. But there was a political vacuum for the first eight months as assembly members made 16 failed attempts to select a prime minister.

They were then given a yearlong extension to the end of May this year, but they only met eight times for a total of 95 minutes.

President Yadav has now given the assembly a further three months to come up with an outline constitution. But few expect to see any significant developments by the end of August. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

For Pakistan, time to try India as a friend

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 21, 2011

By Adnan Rehmat | DAWN.COM

Is Pakistan set to implode in its exasperating persistence to define itself in only security terms vis-à-vis

A cricket fan gets his face painted with the colors of the Pakistan and Indian national flags ahead of the ICC World Cup semifinal match between India and Pakistan, in Gauhati, India, Tuesday, March 29, 2011. – AP Photo/File.

India as did the Soviet Union with the United States in a nuclear-shadowed Cold War that lasted 40 years, a numbing fear that consumed three generations, but ended in a barren inevitability 20 years ago of the former collapsing into 13 new countries?

It seems more likely than not, given the few signs that a fundamental rethink in underway in Pakistan in determining what it stands for rather than what it doesn’t stand for, which passes for its schizophrenic identity.

Two specific WikiLeaks cables published in Dawn in recent weeks reveal more than just what is already known about Pakistan’s paranoid obsession with India and the authorship and control of the policy of paranoia by the military establishment. In the first, President Asif Zardari, the commander-in-chief of Pakistan’s armed forces, counters the suggestion of Senator John Kerry that New Delhi is interested in pursuing peace with Islamabad by arguing that India has five times more tanks than Pakistan and that these are Pakistan-specific because the Sino-India border terrain cannot support a tank battle. In the second cable, severe civil-military tensions are revealed over access to and control of American aid flows to Pakistan with the army insisting for, and getting, direct aid and refusing to share details with the elected government even during drafting of the annual budgets.

The oversimplification of the link between military prowess and bilateral relationship – no doubt handed to Zardari in briefings from the military leadership – is disturbing. If Pakistan has to match India tank to tank, plane to plane, soldier to soldier, frigate to frigate and missile to missile before making peace, then it’s a lost battle in perpetuity. If matching military might was the precondition to peace then the world would have been blown up 200 times over because the unending Indo-Pak tensions and Indo-Pak like wars would have been replicated on every shared national border on the planet. What use was there to acquire super-expensive nuclear capability if it didn’t solve the problem of imbalance in conventional military capability? No two nuclear powers have fought a conventional war. Tensions are one thing but war is another. So why still sacrifice national prosperity at the cost of national dignity, as Army chief General Kayani said days after Osama bin Laden was taken out. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Gorkhaland for Sale

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 16, 2011

The newly elected Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjeeannounced on 7 June that the West Bengal state government has come to an agreement with the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM), the party leading the agitation for a separate Gorkha state since 2007. Gorkhaland was supposed to be carved out of West Bengal in India and encompass the current district of Darjeeling in the Himalayan foothills.

Darjeeling district is culturally distinct from the rest of the state by its primary language (Nepali instead of Bengali) and its character as a melting pot of religions and ethnicities (various indigenous tribes and immigrants from Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan). Now the leaders of the GJM have dropped the demand for a separate state and instead reached an agreement with the West Bengal government to form a new hill council with elected representatives to govern in a semi-autonomous fashion.

It seems that history has just repeated itself. The demand for a separate state of Gorkhaland is not new. In the 1980s, Subhas Ghisingh and his Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) led a violent two-year conflict for a separate Gorkhaland state. In 1988 Ghisingh accepted a political settlement, signing a tripartite agreement with the governments in Kolkata and New Delhi that gave partial autonomy to the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGCH), the governing body for the district of Darjeeling.

The 2007-2010 agitation was directed as much against the West Bengal government as it was against the leaders of the GNLF. The GJM accused the hill council of siphoning funds and claim that some GNLF functionaries, including Ghisingh, have amassed personal fortunes with money allocated for development. In short: the opposition parties like the GJM were not satisfied with the autonomy granted in the 1980s as it did nothing to improve the living conditions in the region (high unemployment, water shortages, road conditions that deteriorate every monsoon, and landslides). Since the second agitation started, there were frequent strikes affecting government offices, schools and transportation. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Asia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

%d bloggers like this: