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The Nepal Digest Thursday 3 Apr 97: Chaitra 19 2053BS: Year6 Volume61 Issue 1
* TND (The Nepal Digest) Editorial Board *
* -------------------------------------- *
* The Nepal Digest: General Information email@example.com *
* Chief Editor: RJP Singh (Open Position) firstname.lastname@example.org *
* Columnist: Pramod K. Mishra email@example.com *
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* +++++ Food For Thought +++++ *
* "Heros are the ones who give a bit of themselves to the community" *
* "Democracy perishes among the silent crowd" -Sirdar_Khalifa *
******************************************************* Date: Sat, 22 Feb 1997 22:41:06 EST To: The Nepal digest Editor <email@example.com> From: "Pramod K. Mishra" <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Prejudice III: The Story of Caste
"Sanskar" was a big word with my high caste friends in college, a word
they used to distinguish themselves from the lower castes and
untouchables. It gave them a readiest weapon they could use at any time
to cut down their fellow lower-caste boarders--without having the need to
shed even a drop of blood and get in trouble with the law. As a
centuries-old law, one of the holiest terms in the Sanskrit language for
the high caste Indians, one who lacked what this word meant became an
object of worst denigration and contempt. You suffered humiliation at the
hands of the high caste boys if you didn't have "Sanskar," and as a lower
caste, you didn't--congenitally. On the contrary, my high caste friends
called themselves, "Sanskari," flesh and blood mortals endowed with this
mysterious potion, divine and invisible, called "Sanskar," which you
brought with you at birth. The more "Sanskari" you were, the loftier
would be your personality, the diviner your origin, the more light-
skinned and sharper your features--face taut or plump, intelligent looks,
obsessive dietary habits--no onion, no garlic, no meat, no fish, no red
radish nor black eggplant--absurd, neurotic concern with purity,
cleanliness, and shameless arrogance.
Obviously, I lacked many of these virtues. For example, I loved
onions and garlic, though even without these I loved to eat fish and meat.
As for redish and eggplant, white redish and white eggplant didn't taste
even the tenth of what red redish and black eggplant tasted. And then, I
was not tidy in my habits (room # 100 was notorious even among my
well-wishers for its messiness); I advocated unconventional mores and
violation of dietary habits (you must understand that Indians had already
killed thousands of human beings in the name of pigs and cows; so I said
why not eat garlic and chicken and what have you--and, yes, pigs and
calves, too, if you so wish; a few years later they would have the biggest
killing of this kind in which two of my friends, one a body builder Muslim
and the other a very stylish, polite, and gentle high caste Hindu would be
butchered; the Muslim would be speared to death at a crossroad in broad
daylight and the Hindu would be kidnapped and his body parts strewn along
the railway lines in little pieces); and in the winter, since I didn't
sweat and since it was too cold to take a shower in cold water, even that
of the Ganges, I didn't take shower for days on end.. I took shower when
I needed, not early in the morning, but in the afternoon when it warmed up
a little. I didn't worship any gods or goddesses--even Bhagwan; I blamed
these invisible tyrants--and the biggest Tyrant--for the Hindu world's
miseries. As for my skin, the most important of all "Sanskars," even my
mother had complained more than once in my boyhood's days, "What can I do?
It was God's wish! He had fair clay only for me!" and looked up toward
the sky for mercy. I was definitely dark- skinned, and I hadn't yet
caught on the ads for Fair and Lovely in spite of my pimples. So I told
them that I was not "Sanskari" because of the above reasons. Brahman the
Economist said it was true--that the lack of certain virtues made me lack
Sanskar, but in spite of these deficiencies, he said, I was Sanskari
because I was a Brahman, my last name was evidence enough.
"Didn't you hear," he reminded me with admiration, "what the gang
leader called you--'Black Babaji'?" The leader of the gang, a man cruelly
struck by some disease in childhood and therefore paralyzed in the normal
use of his limbs, had threatened me with my life and called me obscene
names, including the above epithet, and blamed me for planning and causing
the revolution that had ended his hegemony and reign of terror in the
hostel. Then Brahman the Economist, without doubt one of my well-wishers,
recited a folk couplet, famous and favorite among the high castes in
"Black Babhan, pale Shudra
Beholding these, trembles Rudra."
(The meaning of this vernacular couplet is clear enough.
Generally, a Brahman in India is supposed to be light-skinned and a
Shudra, the lower castes, darker. But in real life, there are many
Brahmans who are dark-complexioned and many lower castes light-skinned.
So how could the color of skin be applied as an infallible criterion and
maintain the irrefutable justification of the caste system? But for the
functioning of the Hindu society, caste system must be maintained by any
means. Therefore, this reverse logic. Now if a Brahman by chance and
quirk of subterranean matters is found to be dark-skinned, then that's all
the better. Isn't poison conceived as dark, "Kalkoot"? Let's make such a
Brahman even superior to Rudra, the whimsical, dancing, pot-smoking,
terrifying god Shiva. Then again, some concession must be given to
light-skin as well even it belongs to a Shudra. So let's upgrade him as
well at least in informal beliefs to an elevated position; the
deeply-entrenched social and familial customs would take care of the rest.
In this way, both light skin color and caste superiority are endowed with
My high caste friends refused to allow that just because of my
messy room, unbathed body, advocacy of individual rights and decisions
rather than the dictates of parents and caste and religion in vital
matters of sex and marriage, which they called "loose" characterlessness
and I called freedom--I could be called a Shudra. In fact, he said,
citing the above couplet, I was all the more Brahman in spite of the lack
of those mainstream high caste virtues. They just didn't matter in my
case. Since the revolution, they called me "Brahmanam Brahmanah"
(Brahman among the Brahmans). Students of Indian history, they called me, in jest of course, Kautilya, the unscrupulous Brahman of ancient India who had worked to put into the throne Chandragupta Maurya, Emperor Ashoka's grandfather, and composed "Arthashastra," the first treatise of state polity. These Indian college kids talked as though the compulsion to rise against injustice and tyranny, and study English and Sanskrit both at once, were the exclusive prerogatives of the high castes alone.
Yes, one time my high caste classmates in the hostel did call me
Shudra or suspected me to be one. Why, they asked me, did I insist on
letting the minority lower caste boarders stay on in the hotel even when
high castes in all other hostels had kicked out their lower caste boarders
after the caste riots and agitation for job reservation? "Are you a
Shudra," they said, "otherwise, why would you support them? Only a man
without 'sanskar' would do and say such things as you are doing."
I said, "What about Gandhi? What about Nehru? What about
Hinduism? What about humanity?" The Major's Son, a missionary-school
educated, obscenity-spewing Rajput, said, "F*** Gandhi and his mother!
Put a bamboo up Nehru's arse! Gandhi was a Shudra and Nehru lost his
caste by letting his daughter marry a Muslim. As for Ambedkar, 'O Saalaa
Harijan thaa!' What are you blabbering about Hinduism Finduism! Humanity!
What do we owe to it's mother? Nothing!" It seemed that Hinduism had
been created to no other end but for one and only purpose: to create the
caste hierarchy and segregate society and protect the high castes' birth
I have since thought about the meaning of this strange
word--"Sanskar." Some of the dictionary meanings of this word are
"purity, perfection, education, cultivation, embellishment, consecration, capacity, effect of the work, reproductive quality, such as vitality, elasticity, and mental impression, faculty of recollection, investiture with the sacred thread, etc., etc., etc.
Accordingly, "Sanskar hin" would mean those of the sacred
thread-wearing castes who haven't gone through that ritual. Just imagine
what happens to all those mortals who are prohibited to wear this sacred
thread in Hinduism! Except for the sacred thread, which symbolizes the
beginning of cleanliness and purity (I remember every time I stood or
squatted to urinate, I was involuntarily reminded that I must lift the
thread and twist it around my right ear before relieving; and every time
the threads wore out and fell away and my father saw it, he brought a new
one and made me wear it-- and I didn't refuse; I guess I wanted to be
Sanskari the easy way), except for the sacred thread, all the virtues that
go in the name of "Sanskar" seem obtainable. In practice, that doesn't
happen. Sanskrit dictionaries don't tell the whole truth, which has long
given up culling the meanings of old words from current usage to update
their changing meanings, confining themselves instead to the classics of
Sanskrit written centuries ago.
The meaning of "Sanskar" as used by high the castes did include
some of the meanings associated with rituals and habits. But the real
meaning, in current usage, related primarily to in-born, genetic traits
and skin color, attributable to particular castes. Or, one can say that
the way my college friends used this word meant a number of things: all
assumed either present or absent, present among the high castes and absent
among the lower castes. At the root of all the other meanings in usage,
it meant racial superiority--in terms of color, certain biological
features. When somebody said, "Look how 'sanskari he looks!" it obviously
meant that the man looked brown, possessed a nose of a certain shape,
certain elevation and width of forehead, etc., etc. It was not very clear
where the obtainable virtues ended and biological features took over. A
mess of confusion existed.
This is where I think that India's fall and colonization owes a
lot to this confusion of biological features with civilization and
superiority. For example, a man of paler complexion and Iranian features
was taken for granted to be a high caste and darker complexion a sign of
lower castes--in this way, down to the untouchable, supposedly the darkest
of all. When suddenly the Muslims invaded from the West, much worse, the
English from the sea, you just imagine what the masters of Hindu ideology
thought, accustomed as they were to impute birth superiority to lightness
of skin. Therefore, I think that the conquest of the Muslims, the
Mughals, particularly the British over what is now India owe a great deal
to this caste psyche among the high caste Hindus who were the rulers at
the time these foreign invasions and occupations occurred. But both
Indian and foreign historians wouldn't like to acknowledge this fact even
as one of the factors; they would go for some higher motives, nobler
truths. True, there were other reasons--such as Europe's use of
gunpowder, scientific discoveries, capitalism, fanatic faith in Islam in
the case of the Mughals--but this caste connection with color and race, I
would like to claim, played a major psychological role in the initial
phases of the conquests and colonization. (Just think about the first
Greek invasion of India under Alexander the Great. Chandragupta Mauraya
married Seleucus's daughter, and the caste didn't matter here.)
Those pale-complexioned foreigners who chose to assimilate in
India were readily given the high pedestal among the high castes. For
example, the Huns who invaded from the west and chose to assimilate were
given the high position of Rajputs and assimilated among the second
highest castes in the caste hierarchy, whereas the darker peoples of India
remained at the bottom.
But there is catch here. Caste supersedes and confuses and
absorbs color as well. Intermixing of blood has gone on for centuries as
a natural human tendency and nature's calling. But among the Hindus, an
open social recognition couldn't be granted without threatening the
privileges of the higher castes. In other matters, Manusmriti and
Vatsyayana's "Kamasutra" may be different--the former deals with serious
matters, the law, God, social recognition, public ritualizaion of human
and social relations, etc.; the latter frivolity, mere sexual matters,
tabooed, shameful and hidden subjects--but in matters of who should have
sex with whom and therefore procreate, both these are the same. I was so
amazed when I first fulfilled my adolescent wish of catching hold of this
book of ancient sexology famous among the Hindus that I opened it
immediately when I bought it. I had hoped that I would discover a lofty
treatise on, for me in the days of adolescence, the most vital matter and
learn a dirty trick or two. So far I had gratified my adolescent hunger
by reading only cheap paperback editions in half-educated Hindi about
different types of men and women and different postures, gestures, and
acts, but here it was the original stuff itself translated by a notable
scholar. The very first page, before talking anything about sex, the book
began to lay out an elaborate caste prohibitions and what kind and with
whom sex could be considered superior. At the end, I concluded that
"Manusmriti" and "Kamasutra" are the same in their intent. Sex and labor, divisions of labor and sex, libido and the market, Freud and Marx--both went hand in hand in ancient Hindu code formation--to the disadvantage of the lower castes and women. So caste is not just a matter of who chooses what occupation and whose sweat feeds whom, it's equally a matter of who conducts sexual transactions with whom, and establishes Manusmriti-sanctioned marital relations.
An high caste Indian by popular consensus had to be light-skinned,
what the racist British colonialists called "Brown Dogs." To be sure, if
you were a "Brown Dog," then you considered yourself superior to all the
other dogs who were darker than you, black being the lowest dog. The
reverse also was true. He had to have certain facial features that
resembled, say, how the Iranians generally look (years later I had to
defrock an Iranian of his color-pride when he called our African roommate,
his and mine, derogatory names. But that was much later).
Indeed, the high caste boarders ranged from a shade of dark to
shades of pale. But the paler you were, the prouder you felt, even though
your mind had gone bunk and defunct, contrary to caste expectations (there
was a fellow boarder of my batch, a relative of the Brahman Warden, one of
the worst students; but he had the most pretensions about his high caste
on account of his complexion).
So the rhetoric of the lack of this magical "Sanskar" condemned
without trial all the so-called lower castes and validated all the upper
castes, including two of our cooks--pale, pitiable, and proud. These were
quite unlike the Brahman cook, darkest that I have seen, in my high school
just across the border, who was so stubborn, garrulous, and boasting that
no matter how much we asked him ("Please, please, please Panditji! Don't
speak when you serve.") not to speak , he never heeded our importunities.
While serving food on the muddy veranda, bending double, his twisted toes
clamping the mud, gobs of spittle flew from the big gaps between the
crooked teeth of his over-salivating mouth with every ladle of fodder he
served. He never desisted our call.
The talk of Sanskar at present condemns millions and millions of
people in India, both those who say they are born with this magical potion
and those said to be devoid of it's blessings. For those who pride in
having it wallow in smugness and deadened rituals; and those said to be
born without it feel the heat of the economic deprivation and social
stigma--not least, self-stereotyping. To blame the high castes alone for
the flourishing of caste system would be to speak only the half-truth.
True, we read about Hitler and the War, but nobody asked to make
a connection nor did anyone ask to understand and apply the Nazi racial
beliefs to contemporary Indian situation, to the so- called Aryan
pretensions and myths of many of my fellow high caste classmates. For
example, what would have happened to those who called themselves Aryans
in my hostel if they had found themselves living in Hitler's Europe?
Would Hitler have kissed their lips? Would they have been spared cattle
cars because of their Aryan claims? I don't think so--all their Aryan
boasts gone up their drain.
Those who are condemned in its name no less believe in this system, when
it comes to defining themselves in relation to those who belong lower than
their position in the hierarchy. What's more, even those who are called
Harijans in India, bought wholesale into Manu's nefarious designs, have
their own hierarchy, and one caste looks down upon the other and very
often does not eat food cooked by the one considered lower in the Hindu
scheme of things, let alone intermarriage. As long as some one was
securely lower than you, you felt proud and willingly worshipped who were
securely enthroned above as born superiors. Hindu caste system cannot be
reformed; it must be abolished--root, stem, and branch. And that has to
come more from below, from the grassroots level, than from above.
In recent years, in Indian politics, some parties have come
forward with the caste agendas, but they have failed to examine these
cultural beliefs and prejudices analytically, for the educational system
is still good for producing only clerks--from the office clerk to the IAS
officer. Nobody examines their daily lives and customs and practices
systematically, academically; all the courses are designed at the top and
focus on histories of events long past, lives long dead, texts written
long ago, ideas long outdated or borrowed slavishly from the colonialist
Of course, there are those who go to the US or Europe and return
to their homelands and realize that their English-school education cheated
them of the vital center of their native culture and past, particularly
deprived them of its wholesale doses. And so, you have another kind of
reaction: they advocate--these whose number you can count on finger
tips--a complete rejection of the West, hook, line, and sinker. It's not
only western popular culture that they feel humiliated by, but also
liberatory Western ideas they find abominable, because they didn't
originate in their homelands--and they threaten their inherited
privileges. One could admire their pride in local systems, cultures, and
mores. But only if the intellectual infrastructure there--schools,
colleges, and universities--would train those fortunate few who afford
these precincts of luxury to examine, analyze, and produce ideas and
cultural waves to counter and exchange rather than blindly memorize and
imitate borrowed ideas-- whether so-called eastern or western ideas and
texts. At the end, this rejection of the West amounts to nothing more
than an unthinking nativism, frustration adjustment, and a knee-jerk
reaction of a colonized mind and the nativist excuse of an internal
And then there are those who would do anything to mimic the West.
>From the use of forks and table knives and tables to the use of the
English language to the swaping of wives in the name of modern lifestyle--everything swallowed lock, stock, and barrel, to use the cliche, in order to have the rubb off of this new Sanskar. Whatever the West does, Hollywood films and t.v. do, American popular culture does, the British Sahibs did--is modern and worth emulating. A poet in the native language doesn't sound good to them not because the poet has some shortcomings in his or her poetry but because the poor poet is not like Wordsworth or Keats or some such writer of the West, whom our friend blindly worships. I had a professor in India, Oxbride-returned, who came to class in a hat, holding a cane in his hand and a pipe in his mouth, and proudly told us, his poor native students, "Oh, my ears are deaf to Indian music." That was exactly what he said over and over again. I found many an English lecturers and professors in India arrogant, just because they had read English literature and mimicked certain English manners; in my presence, they mocked and dismissed the scholarships of even well-known Hindi professors. They didn't know I had studied and loved Sanskrit and its daughters, as much, if not more.
At one point in his life, Nehru's father was of this kind of
Indian, totally bought into Europeaness, the only way, he had thought
perhaps, he could rise in the eyes of his British masters. Nehru had not
a little problem with his father after he returned from England with a
tripos, but more Indian than ever. And even now, there are many who would
be anything, do anything if a habit, a custom, an object, a cultural item
is branded Western. And again, education, as it is imparted in Indian
schools, colleges, and universities, lies at the root of these extreme,
contradictory, obsessions. And in the absence of an infrastructure to
train children to imbibe a habit of questioning and critical thinking,
whoever rules at any particular moment acquires the ability to produce
Sanskar, export Sanskar, and impart Sanskar--and so far the rulers have
been light-skinned and of higher caste.
Unfortunately, there is no remedy in view right now. Politically,
the Indian society works as societies in general work according to
internal dynamics and external pressures, but intellectually its core
remains in the grip of outdated ideas, shoddy customs, rotten beliefs, and
second-hand, out-of- place blind borrowings. In the absence of the
bulwark of contextual ideas, generated, disseminated, and analyzed by and
among the people concerned, systematically and methodically, the political
movements for social transformation alone will end up in tyranny,
dictatorship, corruption, hero- worship and out and out buffoonery, as
they have already done elsewhere and India as well.
A son finishes college and university, becomes a professor and
explicates eastern and western texts, worshipping the text-producers as
infallible gods; or joins the elite civil services and runs a district,
rules over millions--but at the end of it all, his convention-bound
father, superstitious mother, and stifling caste-induced customs and
traditions remain his primary law-givers and parameters to whom he bends
his heads in obeisance and follows willingly their dictates because his
education has never trained him to examine, question, analyze--and, YES,
REJECT--the relevance and validity of any of these cultural authorities in
the context of the changing times and passing of the generations. In
short, such a person, after wandering the alleys of history, literature,
philosophy, and what have you, still believes in "Sanskar," inheritable by
birth, transmittable by birth. You never call a man lost, if he gets lost
at dawn, wanders in foreign climes during the day--and gets back home at
This habit of education for skill cultivation was well and good
when there was external tyranny; when an alien culture--both of the
British and others--had brought in and imposed ideas, whose relevance and
truthfulness were suspect by virtue of the lack of freedom and presence of
domination. So one read one thing, took exams in arguing one kind of
thing, but practiced at home something quite different, even contrary,
dear to one's long cherished tradition and culture, however bad, for the
alien rulers condemned and denigrated the person's culture--everything in
But even in the late seventies and early eighties, what did I
study in India for ten years? I studied Economics, Logic, Hindi,
Sanskrit, English, History, Political Science and so on. But more than
anything, I was taught one thing: memorize, memorize, memorize--and get
the highest marks. Cram, cram, cram--and become first class first.
(Don't question; keep quiet. Once I made a blunder of informing a lecturer that the class time was over and that I had another class to catch up in another building, five minutes away; he gave me five minutes of additional lecture about how he had seen many like me who studied college but sold mangoes in the streets) Unfortunately, that, too-- memorizing, that is--had become outdated; and a peculiar thing called PAIRABI--equivalent of "source and force" in Nepal--had taken over--big time.
In history, I studied Ancient, Medieval, and Modern India and
Modern Europe--from the French Revolution to World War II. But nobody
asked us to examine this thing called "Sanskar," or caste, under whose
evil shadow the whole population--men, women, and children--had been
reeling-- some wallowing in complacency, others suffocating in
self-stereotyping--for more than a millennium. The classes were only for
lecture and passive listening and text books for rote-learning--our heads
empty vessels, our souls filled with wind, our hearts wild cans of worms.
These classes and text books taught little; rather, it was the guff that
we indulged in among ourselves, which of course deteriorated very often in
girl-starved, libido-charged, adolescent vulgarity. Nonetheless, on our
own, in these marathon run of wasting time, at times we ventured into the
blind alleys of burning social and cultural questions, issues that related
to our lives--sex, marriage, caste, politics, culture, God, man, women,
life, death--without any guidance, without any books. We had an
adolescent mind and body, adolescent heart, adolescent soul, adolescent
libido--curious, energetic, confused, restless, and conscience-ridden.
God, we wanted to know everything! We wanted to bust all mysteries, crack
all secrets. But the world of the professors, the grownup world in the
grip of caste and religon's stranglehold, had lost their curiosities; they
had in the course of their education and teaching turned into mere bhaats,
self-important explicators of prescribed texts.
For example, nobody asked us to examine what caste meant, what
religion meant, how to interpret these vital issues that had affected all
our lives deeply. Instead, we memorized information only about
impersonal, distant things, no doubt a legacy of the British colonialism
that never wanted Indians to know and understand systematically their
subjugated conditions. Culturally and intellectually, particularly in the
schools and colleges and among the middle classes in India, British
colonialism still continues today--of course without the presence of the
Union Jack's forces.
True, we read about Hitler and the War, but nobody asked to make a
connection nor did anyone ask to understand and apply the Nazi racial
beliefs to contemporary Indian situation, to the so- called Aryan
pretensions and myths of many of my fellow high caste classmates. For
example, what would have happened to those who called themselves Aryans in
my hostel if they had found themselves living in Hitler's Europe? Would
Hitler have kissed their lips? Would they have been spared cattle cars
because of their Aryan claims? I don't think so--all their Aryan boasts
gone up their drain.
But for all my analysis and raving, belief in "Sanskar" among the
"Sanskaris" remains deep among the high castes and craving for such in-born grandeur continues unabated among both the high and low castes.
Date: Wed, 26 Feb 1997 17:59:00 -0600 (CST)
From: SAGUN KARMACHARYA <email@example.com>
Subject: When was the first issue published? (Fifth Anniversary?)
I have been an avid reader of TND since I was introduced to it by a friend
back in 1993. I would like to get some information about the its first
issue like when was the first issue of TND published and what brought about
the inspiration for its "creation." Maybe our outgoing editor and founder
Rajpal jee or anybody else could comment on it.
P.S. According to my guess it was first published around this time in '92.
Any plans for fifth anniversary???
%%%%%Editor's Note: Thank you for your curiosity. It has been little %%%%%
%%%%% over 5 years since the inception of TND. I don't %%%%%
%%%%% recall any grand plan or reason to start TND. It %%%%%
%%%%% was a desire and passion (for lack of a better %%%%%
%%%%% term) to bring all the Nepalis and folks who are %%%%%
%%%%% interested in Nepal and Nepalis to one unifying %%%%%
%%%%% platform, to share thoughts and discuss ideas, %%%%%
%%%%% to use the medium as a social and/or intellectual %%%%%
%%%%% breeding ground for possible solutions that %%%%%
%%%%% hopefully may help change lives of fellow Nepalis %%%%%
%%%%% and for a better Nepal. %%%%%
%%%%% Only critics, or perhaps yourself, can tell how %%%%%
%%%%% successful we all have become! Nevertheless, the %%%%%
%%%%% effort continues and the light stays on. %%%%%
%%%%% As for the aniversary plans, I think it would be a%%%%%
%%%%% great idea. Lets have some coordinators run with %%%%%
%%%%% it. Send in your ideas and names if you would %%%%%
%%%%% like to lead the aniversary project. %%%%%
******************************************************** Forwarded By: Rajesh B. Shrestha Date: Thu, 27 Feb 1997 11:34:58 -0500 (EST) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: An interesting NGO: TEWA
Cross-posted from SCN:
I am encouraged to see Nepali self-help organizations advertize
on the net. It is heartening to see Nepalis engaged in solutions
based on independence rather than foreign dependence. But I do have some
questions that I pose to any NGO advertizing for donations. I would like
to emphasize that these questions are in ***NO WAY OR FORM*** intended to
shed either a positive or negative light on TEWA or any member of TEWA.
Anyway, here are the questions I would like to pose to TEWA.
*What guarantees (I realize this is a relative word) are there that
the funds will actually go to the stated goals and not to the
administrators' personal use?
*Will TEWA's budget and accounts be made public for anyone to
scrutenize? If so how?
*What type of periodical updates if any will be given to contributors
located as far as the US about how their yearly/bi-yearly donations are
*Is TEWA affiliated with any non-profit US organization so that the
donations will be tax-deductable in the US as well as be subject to US
Again this is **NOT** an attempt to question the integrity of TEWA or any
member of TEWA. I believe these are fundamental questions that must
be asked of any Nepali NGO.
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 1997 12:03:49 -0500 (EST)
Subject: A Fictional satire/humor
Typecasting Nepali journalists
(an attempt at writing satire by)
Overtly and covertly, Nepali journalists typecast public and, at times, private figures. In doing so, they cite the lofty ideals of freedom of speech and the public's right to know. But what happens if the tables are turned -- allowing a 'never-gonna-be-a-journalist' reader like me to indulge in some good-natured needling of the Nepali Fourth Estate? Three categories come to mind.
MR. LECHER: As elsewhere, lechers abound in journalism too. Often,
Mr. Lecher playfully interviews a starlet or a fashion-model of Nepali
glamour-dom, prints her 'revealing' [WHAT is she 'revealing' anyway? I'm too
dumb to find out!] pin-ups, and then goes on to bemoan -- in writing -- how
such pictures actually defile "our traditionally pure Nepali culture".
But why do the editors let Mr. Lecher get away with his
self-serving reports? Simple. Most are undersexed voyeurs themselves who,
despite all the jazz about treating women with respect, desperately hope
that the snaps would bring in hordes of drooling subscribers.
MR. FAUX-SOPHISTICATED: As the title implies, this guy's a phoney.
He's never been out of the country, yet his pride emanates from his
second-hand knowledge about the peep-shows that take place on New York's
42nd Street. He also writes adolescently (in a breathless
'look-how-many-naked-pictures-I-saw' squeal) about 'Sex and the Single Girl', and urges us to buy glossies like 'Elle' and 'Cosmo', which he apparently gets to read for free, for providing in-your-face publicity for the distributors in Thamel! What's more, read his byline, and you'd think that no other than Helen Gurley Brown and Bo Derek had suckled him in his infancy!
Still, Mr. FS wants to be taken seriously when he writes about
tantalizing subjects such as sex, glamour and sleaze in Nepal. But
ultimately even readers who swear by Anais Nin have to go ho-hum, for Mr.
FS's exposes himself for what he really is: Not a Himalayan Nobakov out to
seduce a pouting Lolita, but a pitiable loner with a hand stuck inside his
MR. ECON-ILLITERATE: Mr. Econ-illiterate strengthens my biased
suspicion that the Central Economics Department at TU only teaches its
students ABOUT economics (i.e. biographies, for God's sake!, of dead White
male economists, debunked development-planning models, and all other
similarly irrelevant stuff) at the EXPENSE of teaching them the nuts and
bolts of clean, clear economic reasoning with a stress on exposition.
And one unintended result of such training is that we get
journalists with a business-cum-economics background who do a story on RD
Tuttle, and instead of giving us an analysis of Nepal's Casino industry, end
up comparing -- quite inexplicably -- Tuttle favorably with Larry Flynt, the
Then there exist business-reporters who, in feature-articles in newspapers, continue to let the spokesman of a bank alone tell the world how wonderful his particular bank is, and so forth. Meanwhile, the reporters never really bother to tally up that bank's balance-sheets and share-prices to come up with a critical analysis of Nepal's banking industry.
Still, the worst remain those, who -- never having understood, let
alone mastered, the sound economic arguments against Arun III -- go on
reporting, a la Pashu Rana the Minister, that the project had been killed by
dangerous 'anti-development brigade'.
Sure, the three categories above can hardly even begin to showcase
all the quirkiness of Nepal's fascinating journalists -- from the very best
to the very worst. Tyai pani, the stage is set for someone else to now write
more mischievously about this profession's inability to laugh -- from time
to time -- at its own self. [A shorter version of this was originally
published in The Kathmandu Post.] THE END.
Subject: Congratulations to Pratyoush Onta
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 97 14:16:31 EST
From: email@example.com (Rajesh B. Shrestha)
(What follows is from Bikas Rauniyar, Monica Manandhar, Surendra Sthapit,
Kumar Pandey, Ashutosh Tiwari and Shailesh Gongal in Kathmandu, and also
from Bikash Thapliya at MIT and from Manisha Aryal at Cal Berkeley.)
This posting is in honor of PRATYOUSH ONTA of Thamel, Kathmandu to offer
him world-wide CONGRATULATIONS on his recent earning of a Doctor of
Philosophy (PhD) degree in South Asian history from the University of
Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, USA.
Pratyoush is a 1981 SLC graduate of Kathmandu's Jesuit-run St. Xavier's High
School, where he was a star student: First in his class throughout his
school years, Editor-in-Chief of 'The Godavarian' the school magazine, and
the Winner of his year's "Best Boy" Gold Medal.
After St. Xavier's, Pratyoush entered Thamel's Amrit Science College (ASCol)
to read the sciences, but ended up, by his own admission, spending almost
all his waking hours at the neighboring Godavari Alumni Association (GAA) --
running social-service activities, conducting extra-curricular contests for
high schools and colleges, and just hanging out with friends from high
But even then, he stood out for his leadership abilities and for his
dedicated service to the underprivileged, for in early 1984, he won the "Fr.
Niesen Memorial Service Award" -- the highest annual service award that the
GAA bestows upon its most influentially active member.
Later that spring, Pratyoush won a Wien Memorial Scholarship ("no loans,
just grants") to pursue undergraduate studies at Brandeis University in
Waltham, Massachusetts, USA, and four years later, in 1988, graduated with a
BA -- summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa -- in economics and mathematics (with
a substantial number of courses in computer science as well).
Deciding to go to graduate school right after college, Pratyoush applied to
PhD economics programs, and was accepted with a fellowship by one of the
top-ranked graduate economics departments -- the University of Pennsylvania
(Penn) in Philadelphia, USA.
But by his own admission, Pratyoush "disliked" the graduate economics
program, for he felt that graduate economics, as it was and is being taught
in the United States was (and is) inter alia narrowly dependent upon: i)
one's somewhat "forced" acceptance of "unrealistic" sets of assumptions (so
that models would hold true), and (ii) one's then strutting, usually
"unnecessary", mathematics, as though one's doctoral mission were to prove that economics is really the neo-physics of the late 20th century. [Aside: Those already in and enjoying economics PhD programs and those considering to go do an economics PhD may simply ignore this paragraph!]
Anyway, Pratyoush, with his superior undergrad/grad records, had little
trouble transferring to another department at Penn, where he earned an MA
degree in South Asian Studies in 1991. After that, he was formally a PhD
candidate in the field of South Asian history.
And after researching for his dissertation in various locations across
Nepal, India, England and the United States, Pratyoush titled it "The
Politics of Bravery: A History of Nepali Nationalism". To his credit,
Pratyoush has already published several articles based on chapters of his
A prolific, research-oriented yet lucid writer in both Nepali and
English languages, Pratyoush's thought-provoking research articles,
op-eds/book-reviews/memoirs have appeared in a number of academic journals,
magazines and newspapers in Nepal, India and elsewhere, and, fortunately,
also on TND. In fact, in 1994-95, despite his busy academic schedule,
Pratyoush characteristically also found the time and energy to volunteer as
a "Review Editor" of TND.
Presently, Pratyoush lives and works in Kathmandu, where he is:
1) A co-founder/co-editor of "Studies in Nepali History and Society", a
Kathmandu-based half-yearly academic journal that has already come out with
2) The Convener of Martin Chautari, that THE place in Thapathali for all
kinds of stimulating/intense/academic and at times purely 'howday' guff
on issues facing contemporary Nepal's societies.
3) A research editor at HIMAL (Nepali) magazine.
4) A co-ordinator of the monthly "The Kathmandu Post Review of Books".
5) A founding-member of the Kathmandu Book Society.
6) As anyone who has spent some time talking with him knows, a voracious
reader and a serious researcher/thinker/writer on the contemporary and
Panchayat-kalin Nepal and Nepal's military history (with reference to the Gorkhas).
7) And more importantly, he's pursuing independent research on Nepali
history and society, as well as (informally) serving as a thought-provoking
mentor/colleague/critic to many Nepali and non-Nepali researchers/students
Still, the MOST IMPORTANT than the above litany of external achievements is
this FACT that anyone who has worked with Pratyoush
can attest to: That he is somebody with a very high degree of personal and
professional integrity, and that he has a great sense of humor. Well, there
you have it: Brilliance and integrity with a sense of humor. What a
combination to celebrate as well as to envy!
And that brings us to this public-service announcement to all Nepali/South
Asian father-mother out there who are searching all over the planet for a
"ramro, tagada, intelligent, non-smoking Nepali dool.ha" for their nubile daughter: Yes, our friend, Dr. Onta IS single, and, yes, caste is no bar.
(Needless to say that Pratyoush himself has absolutely no idea that all this
is appearing on the Internet. So let this all -- if and when he does find
out -- come as a complete surprise to him. Then again, as an in-house saying
goes, all's fair and square among former and new Pizza Gang members!)
From: "Madhav P. Bhatta" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Bombaiko Bazarma Nepali Cheli ra Nepali Cheliharuko Katha
Vicente Belmonte's post to the last issue of TND (February 19, 1997)
has brought forth once again the ugly truth about the problem of
girl trafficking in Nepal and collective denial of the problem
in our part ( that includes the government, Nepali Janta and "we" the
internet surfing Nepali Janta.) This collective denial and general
apathy has resulted in loss of human dignity and massive suffering
beyond any of our imagination of thousands of Nepali Chelibetis.
The effect of girl trafficking on individuals upon which this hideous
crime is inflicted, or the communities from which these girls come
from, or a Nation which stands silently need not be repeated here.
These have been the topics of endless seminars, documentaries,
project proposals and so on so forth. Here, I would like to put
forward an interesting observation that I encountered last year,
and had meant to bring forth to the attention of the internet Janta
but for various reasons was unable to do so.
Last summer ( I think it was in July but I am not sure) United
Nations Human Development Report came out, once again, with the
issue of girl trafficking from the hills of Nepal to the brothels of
big cities in India. The desperate owes of Nepali Chelis were
reported probably in most of the Newspapers around the world and
probably over the internet too. I think it was the same week or
month, another Nepali Cheli in Bombay, a very famous one I might
add, visited the US as a part of Naach-Gan Tolee from Bollywood. I
think some of you might have realized who I am talking about. Yes, I
am talking about MANISHA KOIRALA. She visited many cities in the US-
New York and Houston are two I can remember-
enchanting the audience with her talent and showmanship. I think
the memeber of the Nepali community who went to see her shows were
especially impressed by her. Some of them were even able to visit
her back stage and talk to her. Some people found her very charming,
amicable and I guess nice, while other begged to differ about her
personality. So there was a big debate over internet about how nice
Manisha was or how not so nice Manisha was over the internet- namely
TND and SCN.
The debate raged on for few weeks in both the TND ans SCN, like the
monsoon rain in Bombay about the character of the famous Nepali
Cheli- Manisha. Some argued that Manisha being such a big star was
so humble and was nice enough to see "little Nepalis" ( these are my
words) and we should support her because as Nepali she made herself
somebody in the cruel land of Bollywood- she a STAR. Some people
even wanted her to name her the second NEPALI TARA-- second only to
Vrikuti. While other were not very inpressed about her. They
thought she was arrogant and stuck up and so on. I have
personally not met Manisha, so let me tell I have no opinion of her.
I am not here to bebate or pass judgement on whether Manisha is nice
or not or her contribution to our National pride
But the whole debate hit me with a sense of irony and sense of disgust. While it was the same week the issue of the desparate lives of thousands of Nepalis Chelis came to light ( nothing new but we do need to be reminded again and again that the brothels of Bombay are filled with them), there was not a single article or response or mentioned of the report over the internet. We, the memembers of the Nepali community, seem to sit in silent, ignore and wait for the storm to pass. We rather talk about Manisha, than KANCHI or MAILI because it is a lot easier, interesting and probably uplifting to do so. Talking about Nepali prostitues in India reminds us of our dirty national secret, our society's digrace. If we admit the problem then we cannot sit and talk about how moral, good and wonderful we and our society is. It will lead us to question our own values. It will remind us that we only say that worship and honor our Kanya-Kumari Chelis but we do not give a damn if they are sold like cattles in the meat market of Bombay. If we realize that we are not protecting our CheliBetis, we will know that we are accomplices in this hideous crime-- we are sinners- "PAPIS"- too. It will make us realize that we are a horde of hypocrits. So, we rather not talk about it.
I think that is where our problem lies. Our inability to accept the problem. When we don't even acknowlege the existence of the problem or rather existence of a collective problem then we will never seek a collective solution. For most of us, the trafficking of girls is a problem of some other people. How many of us know a family whose Cheli or Bahini has been sold to the brothels of Bomabay? For most of us, it is " their" problem. But we better start acknowleging it as our own problem- before it is too late. We have an obligation as a nation to protect our own; we have an obligation as a society to combat a hideous phenimenon; we as human being have a moral obligation.
Date: Fri, 28 Feb 1997 15:40:46 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Orthopaedic Surgeon to Nepal
I am a great friend of Nepal and have recently talked to a doctor friend of
mine about possibly going to Nepal in May to do some work. He is one of the
top orthopaedic surgeons in the USA and is willing to go to Nepal for 3 weeks
or so this May. He is also a specialist in arthroscopy (using a tiny hole in
the skin and a video camera to perform surgery without cutting open the
skin...) as well as beinga specialist in sports medicine.
My question is this: does anyone know of a hospital or clinic who could use
his skills for a week or so in May? He works on ankles, knees, feet, etc...
Also, do any hospitals in Nepal have arthroscopy equiptment? It is very technology heavy.
Please respond to me as soon as possible so that we can arrange this if it is
Date: Fri, 28 Feb 1997 15:44:26 -0500
From: Paul Glanzrock <email@example.com>
Subject: Web designer in Nepal
I am a web designer based in New York
and will be in Nepal around May/June.
If you know of any individuals or companies
who need information about the Internet/Web,
I would be happy to visit them while I'm there.
Silicon Alley Survivor
Subject: Really : How many Nepalese in US? New claims...
Date: Sun, 2 Mar 97 16:01:37 EST
Cross-posted from SCN:
How many Nepalese are there in US?
A recent news clip in kpost reports Mr Hada of American Nepal associations
claiming that there were 20,000 nepalese in US. Mr Hada was obviously
representing the interests of permanent residents and nepali us citizens
who want a green card to live, work, and invest in US instead of getting a
short term tourist visa. The article does not make it clear if he estimates
there are 20,000 legal US citizens of nepali orgins.
If so this would contradict, an estimate made by Dr K. Baidya, a
demographer, who scanned US Census roles and came up with a number of
3000-4000 Nepalese in US. One would assume that these re Nepalese that care
to be counted, the documented permanent residents and citizens. This count
probably does not include legal non-immigrants, the legions of students and
tourists who enter the US and either keep their status or legal or just
keep n hanging out.
Based on records from US Immigrations Services nd UN consul records, Sanjay
Manandhar estimated that there maybe about 15,000 Nepalse in US. I have
felt this was the best estimate published so far (Himal in 1993, i think).
Even by this estimate, one would estimate a growth rate from 1993-96 would
yieild at least 20,000 Nepalese in US.
I often advocated all these nepalese associations at least starting couting
nepalese in US instead of beings just a dal bhaat tarkari dasian bhoj
culture club. But the current leaderships seesm to be too timid to make any
bold steps as pursuing the many leagsla nees of nepalese in US or breaking
the romans of the harmonious nepalse which might breadk into political and
I wonder if any of you out there has better estimates???
Date: Tue, 4 Mar 1997 10:53:54 -0500 (EST)
From: South Asia Program-Cornell University <firstname.lastname@example.org>
June 16 - July 25, 1997
June 16 - August 12, 1997
Nepali, 160, a six or ten week course in the official language of Nepal, will be offered in Cornell University Summer Session. Taught by Shambu Oja, under the supervision of Kathryn S. March, this six or ten-credit course is offered by the Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics and the South Asia Program. This course provides an unusual opportunity to develop competence in Nepali over the summer.
Emphasis will be on the spoken colloquial language, in dialogues, exercises,
and conversation practice. In addition, however, special attention is given
to assisting students to develop vocabularies and abilities appropriate to
their unique professional needs. Reading and writing practice use both
colloquial and scholarly materials in the Nepali (Devanagari) script.
Students will spend four hours per day in class and two further hours
working with recorded materials in addition to the time required for daily
The program lasts six or ten weeks, June 16 through July 25 for six credit
hours, and June 16 through August 12, 1997 for ten. Class meets five days a
Admission and Registration:
There are no prerequisites for Nepali 160. To receive an application,
contact the South Asia Program at email@example.com or phone (607) 255-8493.
Assignment to appropriate sections will be made by the instructors upon
evaluation after arrival.
Tuition and Financial Aid:
Tuition for the ten-credit summer program is $535 per credit hour for a
total of $3,210 for the six week course and $5,350 for the ten week course.
Two U.S. Department of Education fellowships covering tuition and fees are
available through the South Asia Program. These fellowships are open to
U.S. citizens and permanent residents who have completed at least a
baccalaureate degree. A limited amount of additional financial aid is
available. Students applying for a fellowship or financial aid should
submit, in addition to the attached application, a transcript, one letter of
recommendation, and a brief statement of study and career objectives. All
application materials for fellowships must be received by April 15. Awards
will be announced May 1, 1997.
Housing and Dining:
On-campus housing and dining plans are available through Barbara Romano,
Campus Life, 206 Robert Purcell Community Center, Cornell University,
Ithaca, New York 14853, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, tel: (607) 255-6290/255-9800.
Further inquiries can be directed to the Program at the above address or by
e-mail: email@example.com, or phone (607) 255-8493.
South Asia Program
Subject: Nepali soccer players in Indian clubs
Date: Tue, 4 Mar 97 23:21:35 EST
Cross-posted from SCN:
I have always had a keen interest in the Nepalese soccer scene. For
those SCN folks who may be interested, a few Nepali stars are now
playing professional soccer for prime Indian clubs. To name a few:
Mani Shah- Salgaocar Club, Goa
Sunil Tuladhar- Salgaocar Club, Goa
Upendra Man Singh- Salgaocar Club, Goa
Deb Narayan Chaudhary- East Bengal, Calcutta
There used to be times when a team from places like Jalpaiguri,
Siliguri, Ranchi etc from India would come and beat the national team
from Nepal and walk away with the all the trophies from Nepal. Or a
local team managing to borrow a few players from Bengal(India) would
become national champions. Nepal may not be in the Asian standards yet
but few players have been able to get into star teams of South Asia, and
Malaysia. I hope we will have more Nepali players developing into
professionals and make Nepal atleast a force to reckon with in South
Disclaimer: This posting has nothing to do with race, caste, creed etc
which seems to be the "in" thing of SCN these days.
Date: Tue, 04 Mar 1997 23:49:54 -0500
From: Sachin Sharma <Sachin_Sharma@brown.edu>
Subject: UPDATE: CULTURAL SHOW FOR ANA CONFERENCE 1997, Boston MA
UPDATE: CULTURAL SHOW FOR ANA CONFERENCE 1997, Boston MA
Dear Friends of Nepal,
Preparation for The Association of Nepalis in the Americas (ANA) 15th
Annual conference in Boston, MA is well underway! The Greater Boston
Nepali Community (GBNC) is working very hard to make this year's meeting
an outstanding success. We are currently seeking acts for this year's
Cultural Show and would like to receive input from those who are
interested in participating. Please email Prabhat Adhikari, Cultural
Show Coordinator, for further information at <bigger>firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit the ANA Homepage at http://www.servtech.com/public/abishek
Visit the GBNC Homepage at http://www.mit.edu/people/arp/gbnc
-GBNC Steering Committee
Date: Wed, 05 Mar 1997 07:39:19 -0500
From: email@example.com (Mary Des Chene)
Subject: Kathmandu Post Review of Books, Feb 97
>From the Kathmandu Post Review of Books of 23 Feb. 1997
The KPRB is coordinated by members of the Kathmandu Book Society. The
Kathmandu Book Society strives to be a critical forum for discussions on
Nepal's book industry - broadly defined. Its meetings will take place at
Martin Chautari (Thapathali) at 5:30pm on the second last Sunday of each
month. Publishers, book-sellers and authors are requested to send in books
for reviews to POBox 12456, Kathmandu. Attn: Ashutosh Tiwari (tel 470013)
or Shailesh Gongal (242977).
(Note: The lead essay and 2 reviews are posted here. The other reviews from
the 23 Feb. issue were:
by Madhav P Ghimere
Royal Nepal Academy, 1996, Rs. 38
Reviewed by Padam P Devkota
by M Boycko, A Shleiger and R Vishny
The MIT Press, 1995, $18.95
Reviewed by Bikas Thapaliya
They will be posted later if possible).
NGO Conceptions, Rhetoric, and Politics
By Lazima Onta-Bhatta
NGO bashing has become a popular sport for the Nepali media in recent
years. While the lofty rhetoric of people-centered development still
prevails within the NGO world, media portrayals of NGOs--that both inform
and build upon popular conceptions--have little in common with this
Rhetoric Media/Popular Conceptions:
Cost effective Dollar Kheti
Local resources Pajero
Local knowledge Consultants
Tool for democracy Tool for making quick money
Grassroots Urban-biased/Bidesh Vraman
Networking/Coalition building NGO Federations--power mongers
Capacity-building Seminars/Workshops in big hotels
Sustainability Magi khane bhandho
Public scrutiny of the NGOs (and other sectors) is undoubtedly necessary.
The Nepali media has, however, failed to deliver a worthwhile appraisal of
this sector. Its criticisms have usually been limited to a long list of
name-callings, unsubstantiated allegations regarding abuse of funds, and
cliched claims that NGO work is mere pomp and show. Proper discrimination
between dollar consuming NGOs and those honestly doing significant work is
seldom exhibited. This practice of shallow reporting has, however,
convinced the general public that all NGOs are not-to-be-trusted
dollar-hatching industries controlled by the educated few in the urban
Were NGOs always perceived in such a negative light? Were conceptions of
the NGOs different in different political climates?
The panchayat state systematically regulated the NGOs to neutralize their
potential for mass mobilization and conscientization. The process of
neutralization began with the Sangh Sanstha (Niyantran Garne) Ain 2019
(Nepal Ain Sangraha, v.s. 2021, p405-406) that prohibited the operation of political parties or politically motivated organizations deemed to be detrimental to the nascent panchayat state. This law reflected a concerted effort to ensure that the social organizations were free of anti-panchayat political elements. Neutralization of the NGOs was further enhanced through the institutionalization of social service under the Sanstha Darta Ain 2034 and the establishment of the SSNCC as a national-level umbrella organization for coordinating the social organizations and channeling donor funds.
The SSNCC Act 2034 (1977) defined social organizations as those established
with the objective of general welfare of the public. The ideology of sewa
was promoted by the SSNCC through, among other things, its motto (Atma
sachhi rakhi mana bachan ra karmale sewa garaun), the naming of the SSNCC
building Samajik Sewa Mandir, and its publications such as the magazines
Sewa and Upakar, which featured many articles on the relationships between
sewa and dharma. The SSNCC hence constructed the NGOs as apolitical public
service providers through the rhetoric and symbols of sewa.
The SSNCC was chaired by Her Majesty throughout its life span of fifteen
years. By bringing all social organizations under her wing, the Queen
established herself as the "mother" of the nation. Such an image was in
accord with the rhetoric of the panchayat ideology in which citizens were
children nurtured by the King and the Queen--benevolent parents of the
nation. All active social organizations--for example, the Nepal Red Cross,
Nepal Scout, and Bal Sangathan--were patronized by the members of the royal
family. Social work created an appropriate forum for the royal family to
enhance its public image while strengthening its hold over social
service--a sphere with the potential for enhancing popular conscientization
and mass organization.
With the royal family at the helm, the SSNCC defined, controlled, and
delimited the social service sector to systematically exclude
anti-panchayat elements. Undesirable political background found in any
person involved in an organization was sufficient for the SSNCC or the CDOs
to reject the organization's request for registration. The personal
political backgrounds of those forming an organization overshadowed the
objectives, goals, and programs set and proposed. Hence, political loyalty
to the panchayat state became a pre-requisite for social work. It was
therefore not surprising that the SSNCC became a target of serious
criticism during the political movement of 1990.
Concurrent with the criticisms of the SSNCC, there was a shift in the
language of the NGO rhetoric in line with the changed political climate and
the international discourse on NGOs. In particular, NGOs were reconceived
as development organizations working for people's empowerment and des
bikas, rather than
as social-service organizations providing sewa to the people and the nation.
Shift in the NGO Rhetoric
Charity contributions Development Grants
Charitable service Citizens' rights
Service to the people People's
Des Sewa Des Bikas
After the fall of the panchayat state, the Nepali intellectuals expressed a
high degree of confidence on the NGOs as alternative routes to development
and democratization. This was made abundantly clear through the numerous
conferences organized on various aspects of NGOs between April 1990 and
November 1992 when the current Social Welfare Council was formed. Examples
of such conferences include, "Identifying the Role of NGOs in the Changed
Political Context" (June 25-26, 1990), "Institutional Growth of Nepali NGOs
and Their Effective Mobilization: Process and Solution" (June 1991),
"Foreign Aid and the Role of NGOs in the Development Process of Nepal"
(December 5-6, 1991), "The Role of NGOs in National Development" (February 27-29, 1992), and a set of regional and national level conferences of social organizations organized by the SSNCC (May-June 1992). Some of these conference presentations were published in book form within a year reflecting the continuous zeal of NGO enthusiasts.
Similarly, a number of research studies on NGOs were also published during
this period. Examples include D. Chand's Development Through
Non-Governmental Organizations in Nepal (1991), CECI's The Potentials of
Nepali NGOs (Dec. 1992), Human Resource Development Centre's A Review of
NGOs Involved in Democratization Activities (n.d. study of NGO
democratization projects prior to 1991 elections), UMN's Supporting
National NGOs in the Socioeconomic Development Process (1992), and A.
Rademacher and D. Tamang's Democracy, Development and NGOs (1993).
This period also coincided with the international reawakening of NGOs. Thus
some of the above publications also draw from internationally recognized
writings such as David Korten's book Getting to the 21st Century (1990).
Their celebratory accounts of NGOs highlighting this sector's potential for
citizen mobilization and empowerment are similar to Korten's attempts to
redefine development as people's movement.
The post-1990 euphoria surrounding NGOs has not only diminished by now but
has actually given way to pessimism. Ironically, there has been an
unprecedented growth in the number of NGOs during these past seven years. I
would argue that this growth is a result of the continuing political
uncertainty in the nation. From this perspective, NGOs can be either viewed
as tools for taking advantage of the current chaotic political environment
where accountability simply does not exist; or they can be viewed as
people's own efforts at development as they have lost faith in the
government. Regardless of the perspective chosen, there is no doubt that
the mushrooming of the NGOs has made a positive contribution to employment
generation--a worthwhile contribution in this period of national political
instability and individual income insecurity. Needless to say, this
employment generation is itself unsustainable as it depends not on
productive activities within the nation but on funds donated from abroad.
Legal bulwarks of patriarchy
By Jogendra K Ghimire
Book title : Women and Law in Colonial India: A Social History
Author : Janaki Nair
Publisher : Kali for Women, New Delhi, 1996
After nearly two centuries of struggle over the 'women's question' feminists
have succeeded in defining the range of problems faced by women in India,
paying full attention to the complex ways in which caste, class and community
construct gender, in order to evolve a strategy that is adequate to the task of total social transformation, which alone may result in substantive legal and social equality between men and women."
It might be the case that identifying the reasons for women's social
subordination is one step towards addressing them. Yet this book does not begin with the paragraph quoted above, it ends with it, and, in doing so, is unable to solve the women's question. How Nair's "total social transformation" is to take place, is a process she largely leaves unexplained. And, as is typical of feminist literature, Women and Law in Colonial India
at the repressive roles of privileged women-- active mostly during the Indian nationalist movement-- in the process of legal reform for gender equality.
According to Nair, "patriarchy achieves hegemony (as opposed to dominance)
through seeking and obtaining consent, and not just obedience, specially by rewarding certain forms of complicity, or by employing women themselves in enforcing essentially patriarchal norms." But is not the one who accepts a bribe as liable for punishment as the one who offers it? To Nair, however, patriarchy conveniently exonerates repressive women of privilege from any
blame in this respect.
To the author's credit, the book skillfully unravels the mechanics of the Indian
legal system-- which largely originated during the British Raj -- as well as the
socio-economic impact of laws on women. It analyses legal reforms, particularly during the 18th and the 19th centuries, and addresses the issue of
continued women's subordination in India, in spite of numerous
gender-affirmative statutes now inscribed in the law. Nair, rightly, blames personal laws-- family-based laws rooted in both Muslim and Hindu religion--which continue to discriminate against women in the most fundamental ways, and which supercede national law even to this day.
The Indian Constitution, for instance, grants its citizens the legal right
discrimination. However, this right is negated by the right to profess, practice
and propagate religion-- which serves to safeguard the domain of personal
law. Ruled off as "religious" and, therefore, beyond the jurisdiction of the
colonial administrator, nationalists in colonial India upheld personal laws of
this kind in order to prevent ruler-control over the Indian family.
Nair's findings reveal that a number of legal reforms targeted at
as widow immolation, female infanticide and child marriage, were introduced
during the nineteenth century. Colonial rulers, she argues, propagated these
reforms, not so much for the sake of social emancipation, but for maximal
assertion of their authority in the lives of the ruled. This, unfortunately, gave rise to a struggle between "a critique of Indian tradition initiated by politically
dominant colonial authority and the attempt by Indian intellectuals to defend
that tradition by espousing a modicum of reforms themselves." Nair argues
empowerment through legal reforms to the sidelines.
Today, India's system of personal laws continues to deny women equal rights
to property, maintenance, divorce, guardianship and adoption. Opposition to
reform in this sector has continued to be fierce in post-independence India. Even present-day social activists in favour of secularism have failed to advocate for changes in personal laws. No wonder, then, that the Indian Supreme Court's ruling in the Shah Bano case (1985) was reversed through
legislation, because the Muslim Personal Law Board regarded the Supreme Court as incapable of interpreting the holy Quran. No wonder, also, that widow immolation continues unabated in large parts of the country, despite a formal set of prohibitive laws.
A part of the problem may lie in the fact that Indian women's legal rights, such
as the present right to representation in local assemblies, though spearheaded
by some amount of debate, have not been generated by suffrage movements to
parallel those in Britain and the USA, for instance. Women of India gained this right relatively easily, in the absence of the alliance and
momentum-building groundwork which a preceding feminist movement might have been able to lay down.
(Ghimire is a journalist)
Who speaks for Nepali women?
By Yasuko Fujikura
Bending Bamboo, Changing Winds: Nepali Women tell their Life Stories
Written and compiled by Eva Kipp with contributions from Kim Hudson,
Lucia de Vries, Marieke van Vliet and Alieke Barmentloo
Book Faith India, Delhi, Rs 897
Bending Bamboo Changing Winds is a collection of life histories of village
women in Nepal based on interviews facilitated by SNV Nepal (Netherlands
Development Organization), along with other NGOs. The purpose of this book
is to gain a greater understanding of the reality of Nepali women's lives in different parts of the country, in varied socio-economic categories, and how positive change in their lives has taken place.
Despite the authors' attempt to capture women's voices, the overall narrative
of this book strongly reflects the perspectives of the authors rather than
the women interviewed. This tendency seems to come from the authors'
particular view of tradition and of the changes that affect women's lives. The
authors state that in the past, women's lives were directed by social and
cultural norms associated with their ethnicity, caste and religion, but in recent
years, the status and position of village women has been changing due to increased access to education, water supply, health care, and income generating
activities. In other words, what the authors call "change" is something brought about by development activities, which are able to emancipate women from traditional values. The women's interviews in the book, therefore, may be better read as case studies of development interventions rather than as a cross-section of Nepali women's lives.
According to the book, some of the interviewed women have benefited from
development intervention. From Janakpur, for instance, traditional Maithili artisan products are being sold to markets in Kathmandu and abroad. Anuraji
Jha and Hira Karna work as painters at the Janakpur Art Centre. They have
since become more economicaly independent and have had the opportunity to
travel outside their villages. Other women are now playing leading roles in community activities. For example, Rukmani Shrestha in Thimi, having completed formal training as a midwife, is now working to promote safer and cleaner practices among the traditional birth attendants in her village. And Jagan Gurung is working as an assistant in the Women's Development Section for ACAP in Ghandruk. She has helped local women to organize mothers' groups in order to carry out development activities such as literacy classes, paving the village footpaths, and tree plantations.
A few women, however, do not find any way of improving their lives. Their
concern remains that of securing familial food security. Since Khedani Devi
Harijan's family is landless, she works in the landlords' fields during the
agricultural season in order to secure her family a livelihood. She profited from the goat she purchased with a loan provided by a local NGO, until the
goat died. Now she has to repay the loan. Such women, the authors explain, often belong to "disadvantaged groups" such as the "untouchable" castes and the landless. In the authors' view, the rigid caste system, especially the lack of
cooperation between the high and low castes, is one of the main obstacles to
The interviews are arranged to highlight the factors which contribute to or
obstruct "positive change" in women's lives. This immediate concern of the authors affects the selection of women's stories, and the way the interviews are
edited. The fourteen women interviewed in this book apparently uniformly
narrated their lives according to the categories: childhood, marriage, giving
birth, change, aspirations for the future. This uniform narrative is surely led
by a set of questions the authors asked, or achieved through subsequent
editing. Yet it is not clear what kind of questions were asked and how the
women answered them. Similarly, there is a uniformity of expression and prose style among the interviews which suggests that, despite being in quotes, the published versions have moved rather far from the original diverse set of
recorded voices. It goes without saying that the words of the women have to be understood in their contexts. And the attempt to listen to women is a necessary step towards understanding the complexities of their experiences. However, the important and difficult challenge for writers is how to translate and convey the specific meanings of change for those individual women without fitting their words into the writers' preconceived notions.
(Fujikura is a social science researcher)
From: Rama Pangeni <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Looking for ..
Date: Thu, 6 Mar 97 19:05:28 SGP
My friend Kishore Pant is trying to locate the address of his friend Sagun Karmacharya who is somewhere in US now. Could anybody kindly pass his e-mail address to Kishore ? Kishore can be contacted either through me or through his e-mail account in Nepal which is
email@example.com Your kind help will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
Date: Thu, 06 Mar 1997 19:56:04 -0500
From: puspa man joshi <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Tidbits from Columbus, Ohio
Tidbits from Columbus
By Puspa Man Joshi
At the international festival held at Wellington Middle School, Robin
Baidya, the son of Dr. Maheshor Baidya, organized a Nepali booth with Nepali
handicrafts and posters. The wardrobe (labeda suruwal and dhaka topi) worn
by Robin attracted many visitors. The program was a part of a 6th grade
world geography class.
I was invited to play a Nepali flute and madal. During the program, I had a
chance to talk to Robin's teachers. They told me that Robin is always
interested to share Nepali culture and heritage with others. Not
surprisingly, Robin is one of the best students in my Nepali language class.
He is always motivated to learn Nepali. I would like to congratulate Robin
for his successful efforts in displaying pride in Nepali heritage.
Puspa Man Joshi
Subject: The Rising Nepal/news coverage
Date: Sun, 9 Mar 97 0:49:23 EST
Cross-posted from SCN:
Glad to see the Rising Nepal daily on the net. I rememember the days when
it used to be the sole source of the daily news for English readers. We
relied on it, not because of its English language as it exercised the
complete freedom to spell the words that would make an SLC student look
up the dictionary to double check, but because it carried the version of
the establishment as its hardcopy mouthpiece. The advertisements for job
openings in non-govermental/private sector was its monopoly with no near
competitor even just a decade ago.I recall when a college teacher
corrected three misspelled words of his student, the student quickly
challenged him with a copy of the Rising Nepal. Of course, they were
misspelled on the newspaper article. When it was not related to royalties
or VIPs, the Rising Nepal blamed on the printer's devil. Otherwise, as we
heard, someone responsible got the flak for it or got sacked even if it
turned out to be an innocent human error. To many of its loyal readers,
it seemed like a work of incompetent, overworked, underpaid, undertrained
compositor and proofreader. It was great fun as well as a learning to
compare the English translation with the version put out by the
Gorkhapatra in Nepali. I still remember how I eagerly waited its Friday
Supplement every week when it first introduced the crosswords. There were
days when TRN would not hit the newsstand till noon and none felt
accountable for this delay. I saw how disorganized it was when I went to
pay my subscription to the Gorkhapatra office. I was sent from one desk
to another with none making available to receive money from a customer
during the prime of working hours. May be it will all change when it
eventually becomes a free from government -- a truly private sector
Anyway, seeing TRN on the net, one question that has come up in my mind
is has it changed its way of the reporting and news coverage over the
years? The answer is NO. It used to give a big coverage to ministerial
events and it looks the same even today. Of course, it has changed its
color with the change in patronage, shredding the Panchayat fat and horn
blowing apparatus, but still remains a true establishment paper. What the
Prime Minister and his 40 plus ministers say in a public or whatever
functions as part of a routine activity may be inconseqential most of the
times and is no event nor as a reader am I interested in seeing it on a
front page or headline news. It should not be reported on headlines or
front page coverage unless it is a newsworthy item. How it relates to
policy, decision making or changes that makes one life easier is what one
would be interested in. Exchanging protocoal greetings on a national day
of another country or mutually also does not deserve the precious front
page news unless, again, it is a newsworthy item. I like to see it use
more of its valuable space on the news that its readers want to read. The
Radio Nepal is another true mouthpiece wasting some of its airtime
regularly on some of the unnewsworthy items, but I will save it for
another discussion on it.
While talking about the newspapers, I have always wondered how much our
newspapers follow up on a newspaper story that was reported earlier.
Reporting on current events is one thing we like but shouldn't there be a
follow up on the stories reported? I know I am touching on a sensistive
topic here that some of our journos might take it personally but at the
risk of taking their irks I would like to see them follow what the HIMAL
has been doing on various stories. The recent issue of HIMAL has an
excellent presentation of articles on labourforce going to India from
Nepal. The HIMAL had put out a similar presentation on ethnic situation
in Nepal in one of its earlier issues. The establishment newspapers are
either too timid to report on any newsbreaking event or willingly toe the
establishment line while the private sector newspapers focus too much on
political events, mudslinglings, hearsays and current events. You pick up
a weekly vernacular newspapers in Pipalbot and you find common features
like an interview with so and so and he said it, she said it and some
dismisal predictions of political events.
There is a lack of reporting on human interest events and stories, follow
up and, we see hardly any investigative reporting in general. I find once
in a while some newspapers making efforts in this regard within the
resources. However, in most cases, the Nepali people are fed with the
same unhealthy political bickerings on a daily and weekly basis through
the columns of these newspapers. There is hardly a healthy debate on the
status of economy and improving it and the health of the nation. There
are several instances of people living in ethnic and religious harmony
but I have yet to see some good newspapers coverage/articles that will
further encourage and strenghthen ethnic harmony. There goes the question
of responsible journalism. Many of the statements put on print only bring
hatred and thus do not contribute at all to an effort to establishing an
equal society free of ethnic bias. There are a very few issues dedicated
to important subjects such as, health, women's status, development, etc.
The alcohol and smoking are openly advertised in our magazines some of
which are targeted towards the youth. The NGOs are routinely accused as
being "dollar farming agencies" but ever there any proof of it is
reported nor any investigative reporting on any such NGOs.
I leave you with the following lead topics, as a reader seeing in news
coverage, to follow up in the future investigative stories:
a) What became of Marichman Singh after the fall from the Panchayat
system? Was it his own doing or external pressure? etc.
b)The "Goli Kanda" in 90 when LB Chand was the PM?
c)Mass Deforestation of 80s, who was responsible for it? The person or
persons taking public office must be held responsible for such a mass
destruction. (not to mention many other scandals like, the LC, so on and
d) What the successive governments have done to prevent the exodus of our
chelis to brothels in India? Need concreate plans and programs, not just
e)Health for all by 2000. Was it merely a slogan or achievable in Nepal
since year 2000 is just round the corner. Did the donors who are
intricately involved in planning go wrong?
f) Ethnic and religious harmony in Nepal -- reporting on real life
g) An account of number students who obtained scholarships through the
Education Ministry to study abroad as part of manpower development never
returned home and why?
h) An account and yearly inventory of how much gold and other commodities
confiscated at the customs and whether or not all of it actually went to
the treasury? The stories attached to each of the seize in terms of who
got punished and people behind it.
While the items a, b and c above may sound like a post-mortem, we have
yet to hear the real stories on what actually happened. We need to know
so that the culprit(s) are punished and the same is not repeated in the
I believe the newspapers play a single most important role in public
opinion building. Our thuoghts in terms of what and how we want ourselves
to look as a society should be debated and reflected in our newspapers.
Enuf of my weekend thoughts. Long live TRN -- pro bono publico.
Over to you.
Date: Fri, 07 Mar 1997 00:02:16 CST
From: DHIREN GURUNG <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: NSA !!!!
On Thu, 6 Mar 1997, DHIREN GURUNG wrote:
> Hello Rajpalji dai,
> Please accept our Namasker from Nepal Student
> Association at the University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond, Oklahoma. I am
writing this letter on behalf of NSA. We would really appreciate if you would publish this information in "Nepal Digest". I really appreciate your help in this matter. Thank you. >
> Nepalese students at the University of Central Oklahoma have
> recently formed Nepal student Association(NSA). NSA is the first Nepalese
> organization to be formed in Oklahoma. Members of the first executive
> committee are:
> Dhiren Gurung - president
> Gyanendra Aryal - vice president
> Pujan Roka - secretary
> Kushal Gurung - treasurer
> Reema Shrestha - public relation officer
> Sunit pande - activities officer
> Our sponsors for the Spring of 1997 are Dr.Charles Neimayer,professor
> of history at UCO and Dr. Bill Morey, professor of information system at UCO.
> Dr. charles Neimayer was formerly a professor at the Naval Academy, MD .
> He has served the position of an aide at the White House, working with
> former president George Bush and president Clinton. Although there are only
> 20 Nepalese students at UCO, they are very dynamic and productive.Once the
> president of International President Council Jalal said,Although there are
> only 21 Nepalese students in UCO , they are the role models to other UCO
> International students.
> They are very hard working . You can see, they are everywhereon campus. Some
> of the Nepalese hold an executive positions in couple of big organizations
> like Student Governing Body which is the biggestorganzation in UCO,Associatio
> of Computing Machinery (ACM) which is one of the elite organizations in UCO,
> InternationalPresident Council and Buddhist Learning International
> Society etc.They really are something .... ...."
> For any questions and comments , you can e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
or drop a line at the following address.
> Dhiren Gurung
> Nepal Student Association (NSA)
> P.O.Box - 341181
> Edmond, OK 73034
************************************************************* Date: Wed, 12 Mar 1997 13:56:03 -0500 (EST) From: Bikash@aol.com To: email@example.com Subject: Humor
(a piece of fictional humor inspired by reading too much
by Shailesh, in Kathmandu
Recently, the fifth annual convention of "The Society of Nepalis
Living in Nepal" (TSONLIN), also known as The Greater Kathmandu Nepali
Community (GKNC), got underway in the Valley. Attending it were well-known
scientists and intellectuals from Nepal's political parties of all stripes
as well as a few politically-connected New York Nepalis -- the latter being those who excel in lecturing the rest of us in Nepal on what democracy and human rights are.
And once again, the visiting New York Nepali-dignitaries seized it
upon themselves to remind everyone -- now for the zillionth time -- how they
and they alone had fought, over hot-dogs and lemonade, for Nepal's
prajatantra in April 1990 on the streets of Washington DC.
Anyway, at the start of the GKNC convention, the chief-guest, a
Minister without portfolio, was asked to speak. But, adhering to Nepal's
socio-politically audio-visual tradition, he didn't -- until he got a
go-ahead wave from the Nepal Television cameraman. Only then, he began:
"Mahila, Kancha and Sajjan-brind! We all know that without public awareness, we will not get anywhere. Awareness is the key to development. I am glad that you have all become aware of yourselves as Nepalis. Now, this awareness can be put to some concrete work like desh ko bikas."
The minister went on: "Also, at this point in time, I'd like to make you aware of how much our political party has done for this country. If democracy is the heart of Nepal, then my Party is
its backbone, and I am one of its key fingers. I know that all of you already know this. But since we all need a reminder now and then, just thought I'd remind you of this."
Then, after going on for a few minutes more, the Minister added,
apparently out of nowhere: "And, in the end, let each of us be Nepali, buy
Nepali and live like a Nepali. This is the way to make our motherland
A standing ovation later, the president of GKNC rose up. He droned on for somw time: "I'd like to thank the Chief Guest for his willingness to inaugurate our convention at a ten-minute notice. If every one of our ministers showed such efficiency when it came to inaugurating workshops like this, then we'd be able to send a Nepali to the moon by the end of the decade. Our august Guest likens himself to a finger, but he seems more like the appendix -- not really needed by the national body but not causing harm either." More applause and cheers.
"Anyway," the president continued, "Topics to be discussed in this convention are many. But one is: How to emigrate to America; a session about it is in Room 303, led by two New York -based Nepali attorneys who -- still on a salaried leave from the Nepal Law Campus -- specialize in the matter. And another is a session on how to emigrate to Australia and New Zealand, and this will be held in Room 304. Since these sessions are popular among our resident Nepalis in Kathmandu, I hope all of you will take advantage of these. This way, as more of our members emigrate out of this country we lovingly call Nepal, this will free up space to recruit more new resident Nepalis for the Greater Kathmandu Nepali Community (GKNC)."
Applause and cheers, followed by a vociferous chanting of the GKNC's motto: My Nepal, my pride; Let us now emigrate and hide !!
[Originally published as a +Post Platform+ piece in The Kathmandu Post] THE END.
Date: Sun, 16 Mar 1997 20:51:07 CST
From: TSERING WANGMO <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Mountaineering/tourism and the environment
I would really appreciate information/ directions/ to a research paper on
Tourism/mountaineering and the effects on the environmental and social
lives of the people. i am having trouble recent locating articles, books
and need to get the paper done in a month.
Please could you give me suggestions/ names/ and information on ACAP and
the work they do there.
San Francisco State University
Date: Fri, 28 Feb 1997 07:25:15 EST
From: email@example.com (Adarsh Narayan)
Subject: Indian Budget - 97
Updates on Indian budget
and scheduled talk shows
on the economy
other topics of interest
Want to be a talk show host, write to:
or call: 301.838.9292
SGN, INC. (Rockville, MD)
(Advertising opportunities available).
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 1997 00:02:35 PST
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (For HNC)
Subject: An Appeal for Support for an ANA Convention Forum
I am writing to you on behalf of the Greater Boston Nepali Community
(GBNC), a predominantly student-populated, not-for-profit organization of roughly 300 Nepalis in the Boston area. Instituted in 1989, GBNC has evolved from a community-centric entity to a sponsor of issue-oriented talk programs and discussions concerning Nepal. As members of this academic community, we have tapped the expertise of several knowledgeable personalities including Yog Prasad Upadhyaya (former Nepali ambassador to the US), Jay Raj Acharya (former UN ambassador from Nepal), Bikash Pandey (Program Manager, Intermediate Technology Development Group), Narayan Raj Tiwari (Secretary, Ministry of Forestry and Soil Conservation), Chandra Prasad Gurung (Founder, Annapurna Conservation Awareness Project) and Kul Chandra Gautam (Director, Program Division, UNICEF) among others.
During July 3-5 this year, GBNC is hosting the Association of Nepalis in
Americas (ANA) Convention -- an annual event that brings together
hundreds of Nepali professionals, academicians, and students residing in
North America -- at Brandeis University, Boston. We'd like to invite you
to the ANA Convention during the fourth of July weekend this year, which
is also probably the best time to visit Boston.
The Hydropower Nepal Committee (HNC) formed under GBNC has proposed
"Formulating a Coherent Strategy for Nepal's Hydropower Development for the 21st Century and Making it Work" as the topic for a timely and relevant forum for the Convention. News items like Houston-based Enrons
$9 billion investment proposal for the 10,800 MW Karnali and 402 MW Arun III hydropower projects, Australia-based Snowy Mountains feasibility study of the 750 MW West Seti hydropower project, and Morrison & Knudsens current contract award of the 140 MW Kali Gandaki A hydropower project seem to suggest that Nepalis are on a fast track to become w ater sheikhs of the world. But, are Nepalis actually going to reap some benefits or are they just going to be white elephants that would eventuall y generate power that is too expensive for Nepalis to consume? Is the government doing its homework to find out the macroeconomic implications of capital inflow that is several times its gross domestic product (GDP)? Is it examining the issues concerning the local environment and willing to take up responsibility for operating the power plants if such a circumstance arises? These are tough questions and all t hose concerned with Nepal demand and deserve honest answers. Its time that we have genuine and open dialogs, long overdue between all sides. Moreover, given Boston's own characteristic academic aura, it makes every sense for GBNC's largely student community to host a compelling event that provokes the intellect of anyone who has not lost hope in Nepal.
Against this backdrop, the HNC intends to bring together the perspectives
of influential panelists representing the following entities: the
government (HMG/Nepal), Nepal Electricity Authority, the donor (the
World Bank), the private sector (Himal Power Ltd., Butwal Power Co.) and
an independent thinker well versed with issues on hand.
Given the opportunity to make history at the ANA Convention this year, GBNC is exploring various options to cover the costs inevitably associated with such an event. For a panel of four people, with two panelists arriving from Nepal, our estimated cost for the event stands minimally at $2000. As our strategy for financing, we are primarily approaching individuals and institutions that have close ties with Nepal and care about the activities in Nepal. I would like to take this opportunity to request your personal support in making this event happen. We would highly appreciate a contribution of $50-$100 to help sponsor this event. Your generous contributions will be abundantly credited on our program materials.
Please note that all funds received by HNC will be explicitly accounted for; th e balance sheet of financial information will be regularly published. All proceeds are strictly committed to community activities. All members of HNC as well as GBNC are volunteers. Checks should be made payable to GBNC, PO Box 391251, Cambridge, MA 02139.
Should you need any more information about the forum or have suggestions for us
, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Thank you very much. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Chair, Hydropower Nepal Committee (HNC)
Fax #: (617) 873-4523
Home Phone #: (617) 661-2897
Date: Sun, 23 Feb 1997 15:12:17 EST
Subject: education info
I am planing to move to Nepal with my family (wife and two children 11
years and 18 years). We have visited Asia (India, Sri Lanka and Nepal)
many many times and have decided to give a hand with our knowledge,
experience and private funding... We want to start a home for supporting
and bringning confidence and autonomy to single mothers, helping with
their young children, etc...
Since we will care ourselves for this long-term project, we want to
first to establish our family in order to do efficient work. We are
looking for information concerning available schools in English
especially for our 11 years old son. So far we cannot find a proper
listing of such schools available, be it in Katmandu area, Pokhara area
Quick information would be very helpful.Thank you.
A friend of NEPAL,
****************************************************** Date: Fri, 28 Feb 1997 20:56:53 PST To: email@example.com From: Yvonne Tsang <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: volunteering
Hello! I was looking at your website on Nepal and I was wondering if you
could give me any information on volunteer opportunities in Nepal this
summer. My name is Yvonne Tsang and I am a sophomore at Harvard College.
I would love to spend my summer in Nepal working with the communities
there. I taught English last summer in Mexico. Do you know of volunteer
opportunities or other groups/organizations that would be able to help?
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* Politics *
* 6. CHOOT_KILA (Humor, Recipies, Movie Reviews, Sattaires etc.) *
* 7. JAN_KARI: Classifides (Matrimonials, Jobs etc) *
* 8. KHOJ_KHABAR (Inquiring about Nepal, Nepalis etc. ) *
* 9. TITAR_BITAR: Miscellaneous (Immigration and Taxex etc. ) *
* COPYRIGHT NOTE *
* -------------- *
* The content contributors are responsible for any copyright violations. *
* TND, a non-profit electronic journal, will publish articles that has *
* been published in other electronic or paper journal with proper credit *
* to the original media. *
%% END OF "THE NEPAL DIGEST". %
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