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The Nepal Digest Friday 20 Jan 95: Magh 6 2051 BkSm Volume 35 Issue 12
1. Guest Coloumns
BooK Reviews - Attitudes
News From Nepal
Religion - Re: Budhha
Politics - Re: Nepal Human Rights USA
Education - Re: BudhanilKanta
Re: F2 Visa Denial
Society - Re: Matrimonial Okay
Yatra_Barnan - Nepal
Immigration - Visa Lottery
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* +++++ Food For Thought +++++ *
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* "Democracy perishes among the silent crowd" - Sirdar_RJS_Khalifa *
********************************************************************* Date: Tue, 17 Jan 1995 08:51:19 EST To: A10RJS1@cs.niu.edu (rajpal singh) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Pratyoush R. Onta) Subject: Re: your mail
Review of the first issue of a new bimonthly magazine published from
Kathmandu. This was published in the Kathmandu Post 13 November 1994.
by Pratyoush Onta
The ad announcing its arrival says it all. "The Decade - The 90's. The
Nepalese media - dominated by political, economic and other depressing
issues. The question - are things really that bad? We at ATTITUDES think
differently. Life is beautiful, it is to be celebrated. The trees, the
birds, the hills and valleys .... People in love, your favourite T.V.
programmes, ... Celebrities at home and abroad, 'tu cheez badi hai mast
mast'...." With this description comes the maiden issue of Attitudes, a
bi-monthly "happy magazine" that is about "love, life and you."
The cover shows Arzu Rana Deuba with her man, Sher Bahadur Deuba. As she
hugs him, her face seems transfixed in ecstasy; his face, in turn, shows
a forced, almost non-existent smile, suggesting perhaps that he is
uncomfortable with such public display of affection. After pages of
miscellaneous notes - including a list of 'ten things every man in love
should have' - we
come to the cover story, "First Among Equals" by the editor Rabindra Giri.
The text is interspersed with photographs of the Deubas in love, the
sartorial elegance of Sher Bahadur being particularly noteworthy. Arzu,
"a woman of substance" finds politics per se, uninteresting. Issues like environmental degradation and social problems (which remain unspecified) supposedly concern her the most. A workholic who has traversed the vicissitudes of both personal and professional life, she is described as a
"woman who's independent, self assured yet emotional and sensitive." The
'yet' in the sentence reminds this reader that we are miles away from superceding the language of gender stereotypes. Marriage, Arzu tells us, is bliss. He, while admitting that what he is today "is because of politics" apparently doesn't bring politics home. Instead they discuss
"philosophy, poetry and bed-time stories." Sher Bahadur tells us that he
"intends to take her on a holiday, far away from everything." One is left wondering whether that will come immediately after the elections and before another round of Congress tamasha begins !
Two substantial articles come from the pen of Narayan Wagle. In my
opinion, Wagle's critical reportage and subtle observations on cultural
production in Nepal (especially Nepali films) - as evident in the pages of
Kantipur - makes him one of the best reporter-cultural analysts of my
generation. Venturing to write in English here, Wagle provides an
interesting profile of anthropologist Dor Bahadur Bista, author of
Fatalism and Development, among other things. Yet when Bista claims that,
in helping Jumlis regain their confidence over the last three years he is
implementing what he has written, it feels as though Wagle lets him off
easily, preferring instead to focus on Bista's observations about sexual
behaviour across different communities in Nepal. Wagle's second
contribution, a travel account to Gosainkunda, unfortunately is short on
the kind of vintage-Wagle subtlety that this writer has come to expect
A tete-a-tete with writer Greta Rana reveals interesting facets of her
work and life in Nepal. It also reveals that associate editor, Chandani
Thapa, went to this conversation without having done any homework on
Rana's corpus. Clothes of the 'bold and beautiful' variety designed by
Dolly Gurung, an insipid article entitled "How to be Clint [Eastwood],"
and a report on the Miss Nepal '94 contest together take up ten pages. A
tribute to the late artist R. N. Joshi, cameo news-items from all over
the place, tips to save your job, health titbits, recipes, and reviews
fill in other pages. In "Dashain Blues" we are told "Don't give in to
your wife's demands for jewellery" which suggests that this entire list of
'Attitudinal DOs and DON'Ts' was written with the unacceptable male = provider equation in mind. The layout is admirable and the production quality excellent. Except for the fashion photographs by Pradeep Yonzon, all the others appear without credits. Are we to suppose that they were all taken by Bikas Rauniyar?
This magazine is clearly targeted for a select audience among members of
the "First Nepal" who are thoroughly familiar with the English language
and whose worlds are made up of Nepalis noted above and other icons such
as Michael Jackson, Schwarzenegger, Sunjay Dutt, Agassi, Eastwood, the
Rolling Stones, Jethro Tull, and Pink Floyd. The contents that go in the
production of what is claimed to be a "happy magazine" assume prior
familiarity with these names and the cultural worlds they embody. For
instance the titbit "Color Trouble" - with the first word spelt without
the 'u' as is customary in the US - in which computer graphics make a
'white' Jackson and a 'black' Schwarzenegger can only look not stupid if one knows something about the viciousness of racism in America. The fashion tips and suggestions for health improvement assume a lifestyle taken for granted in metropolitan US and one that increasingly seems to appeal to those aspiring for dominant membership in the First Nepal. The magazine's contents are evidence of the fact that the imagination of these people is now fired by icons from the audio-visual entertainment industry, international sports, and the world of beauty pageants.
Clearly borrowing both form and substance from other "don't worry, be
happy" glossies that now emanate not only from the Euro-American
print-media worlds but also from India, it is unclear if and how Attitudes
will intervene in the collective imagination of those aspiring for
membership in the First Nepal. I agree with the editors when they say
life needs to be celebrated. However, in trying to avoid critical
appreciation of life, this magazine partakes of a strand of postmodern
aesthetics which defers meaningful political engagement endlessly. The
danger is that such uncritical celebration can soon become vapid in the
extreme. Critical appreciation of our landscape, of celebrities at home
and abroad, of people in love, and what have you, is an acceptable form of
cultural analysis but descriptive narratives that simply cultivate a
culture of spectatorship cannot produce a competent, happy Nepal. To be
socially relevant, any celebration cannot but come to terms with our
realities, the Second Nepal, if you will.
Let me just point out some examples. The excessive coverage of the
stellar SLC performance of Garima Rana (yes she wants to be a lawyer and
not a doctor or engineer!) which is continued in this magazine avoids a
frontal confrontation with the colossal waste of human resources that is
represented in the 67% average SLC failure rate over the last 20 years. A
new sensibility of sexuality increasingly dominant here continues to make
women's bodies the site of both conspicuous display and lustful male
gazes. Even as the pageant organizers claimed that female bodies were not
what were been judged, the responses given by contestants in Miss Nepal
'94 are testimony to the fact that when it comes to investing on display of the body and the empowerment of the mind, it is the former that has received more attention from members of the First Nepal. One recalls here what one contestant said about the kind of man she would want to have
("Civilization and ...") and how the woman who compred the show mistranslated judge Dolly Gurung's question to one contestant - "What are the advantages of being born Nepali?"- as "What are the advantages of being a bold Nepali?" I refuse to believe that these are results of bad acoustics. They to me represent what happens when you let imported imaginations run amok inside you, when you invest more on the pomp of the modern and not on your competence to handle it. A celebration of Miss Nepal '94 without noting these realities in our midst is misplaced.
Our country is beset with extreme forms of injustice. The resources that
provided Arzu Rana and Garima Rana their educational competence are
unfortunately not available to an obviously talented Binda Adhikari
('Ujeli' in the rightfully acclaimed telefilm by the same name). Despite the efforts of the Ujeli Help Unit to help Binda - necessarily an act to celebrate as Attitudes does - it is irresponsible to forget the lot of thousands of Bindas that make up our Second Nepal. Yet in removing the subject from the arena of critical discussion (because, face it, it is depressing), Attitudes asks us to participate in an act that fosters collective amnesia about our Second Nepal. Therefore the way in which this magazine wants to celebrate 'love, life and you' is in itself, to me, one depressing symptom of the malaise that has infested our First Nepal. There are miles to go, on every conceivable front, before we can begin to truly celebrate. And depressing issues should challenge us to empower our minds appropriately and not let our bodies just become the sites of various desires.
Date: Wed, 18 Jan 1995 13:57:58 -0500
From: email@example.com (RaJesh B. Shrestha)
Subject: Past Buddhas/Shakyas: Questions
Cross-posted from SCN:
--------------------- Sridhar(guest@PROBLEM_WITH_INEWS_GATEWAY_FILE) wrote:
What is the point of this posting? Are you trying to hint that
the Brahmin caste has some in-built characteristics due to which
Buddha is born as a Brahmin? Or are you trying to hint that though
Buddhism is purportedly against Brahmins, the Buddha does not have
problems with Brahmins?
firstname.lastname@example.org (Tariq Siddiqui) asked:
Will any of the Buddhas be born a Shudra?
email@example.com (Luke SkyWalkerIII) wrote:
I read some where that Buddha said, Buddha's will be born in the
highest family of the highest caste at the time of his birth. So,
if Shudra's are the highest caste at the time of his birth...why not?
NO, I am not a Buddhist...just that I had time to read
some of 'em Buddhist books...
firstname.lastname@example.org (Jaundice D'Mello) wrote:
That Gautam Buddha was the "25th" Buddha, that there's going to be
"another" Buddha ... all these seem to be afterthoughts. Who's
afterthoughts? Well, that's mighty clear.
The Shakyas were Sycthians and Lord Rama's dynasty was Aryan. In fact, I
find it really surprising that the Buddha is often referred to as a
1. Buddhism has a different definition of Brahmin etc. The varnas are by
2. The road to Buddhahood takes many, many generations. The bodhisatva
may be born as a person or an animal. In the final birth, the stage is
set for the Buddha to proclaim Dharma. It is thus destined (according
to Buddhist texts) that he will be born as a Brahmin or a Kshatriya
(and in Jambudvipa) whoever is dominant.
3. My purpose is to point out that many well known "facts" regarding the
"Hinduism"-Buddhism relationship are actually incorrect.
4. Shakyas were definitely not Sycthians ("Shaka").
5. Monuments to past Buddhas once existed. A piller erected by Ashoka near
a stupa to Konakamana exists (stupa has not been located since the piller
was removed from the original site.) There is considerable evidense to
show that Gautam Buddha and Mahavira (24th Jina) were part of an existing
Date: Wed, 18 Jan 1995 12:53:51 -0500
From: email@example.com (Rajendra P. Shrestha)
--------------------------------------------------------------- Employees of Nepal Bank Limited go on Strike
Excerpts from Xinhua and UPI reports
Employees of the Nepal Bank Limited, the largest bank in the
country, launched a 3-day strike starting from sunday, demanding for
the implementation of their agreement with the management on august 24
last year. all regional and branch offices of the bank including its
central office remained locked throughout sunday. according to the
august 24 agreement, the bank management agreed to increase the salary
and allowances of the bank employees in addition to a package of
housing loans and increased pension amounting to ten years' salary of
an employee. however, the management committee after a meeting
saturday withdrew from its earlier commitment, expressing its
inability to implement the agreement without government approval and
proposing a new package of incentives which the bank employees refused
to accept. The bank is 51 percent by the government. Last month, the
communist government in its revised annual budget to Parliament gave
nearly 200,000 government employees a $5 bonus.
The strike was organized by the nepal financial institution
employees association which also said the 3-day strike would be
followed by a hunger strike. its rival organization, the nepal bank
central employees union, disagreed with the present action of locking
out the bank offices and called on employees of the bank to unite and
participate only in programs of action launched by the union central
Fate of Arun-3 Hangs in Balance
By Shusham Shrestha in Kathmandu for AFP
Despite eight years of planning and millions of dollars spent in
studies,Nepal's largest-ever infrastructure project still hangs in the
The 800-million-dollar Arun III hydropower project, first conceived
in 1987, has become the most widely studied project in the country's
history, with large amounts of money spent on environmental impact
studies and paying compensation to displaced locals in the Arun Valley
300 kilometres (187 miles) east of here.
But it is no closer to getting off the ground even though the
country desperately needs the 201 megawatts the project will be able
The project has become shrouded in controversy, with charges of
huge payoffs to members of the Nepali Congress government which was
voted out of power in November and complaints that the electricity
produced by the project would be some of the most expensive in the
world, and a luxury most Nepalese cannot afford.
The project has also come under criticism from environmentalists,
who say the proposed 65-metre (200-foot) high dam will be extremely
vulnerable to a freezing river as it flows from Tibet across the
Some virgin forests in the Makalu-Barun national park also face
destruction to make way for a 117-kilometre (73-mile) access road to
the dam site.
But there are not just local concerns, as political problems have
also surfaced according to some sources.
The high energy yield from Arun would make Nepal relatively energy
independent, something India does not want, according to Dr. Binayak
Bhadra, a former National Planning Commission (NPC) member.
Nepal's current power output was less than 300 mw, but has
enormous hydropower potential, estimated at 83,000 mw, second only to
As an NPC member Bhadra was an advisor to the Nepali Comgress
government on the project. He resigned when they lost power.
India has been using Nepal's energy needs as a form of political
leverage and is concerned that the building of major hydro-electric
plants here will mean that Kathmandu no longer needs to depend on New
Delhi for the small- and medium-sized power projects currently under
planning, political observers said.
Some observers here also believe that India is concerned that
improved energy output will enable Nepal to substantially boost its
industrial capacity which would alter the current trade situation
between the two.
The new Nepal Communist Party-United Marxist and Leninist (NCP-UML)
government had alleged while in opposition that Nepali Congress
government members received payments from agents over the project and
demanded that the project be discussed and approved by parliament, not
just the government.
The World Bank, the biggest contributor to the project supplying
170 million dollars in a soft loan, has been accused of being
motivated by donor-driven interests, putting harsh terms on the
An independent World Bank evaluation team has stated in a recent
report that the Bank management had failed to comply with its policy
guidelines on Arun. Other major contributers are the KFW Bank of
Germany, Asian Development Bank, Japan and Sweden.
The new government has said it will review the project, while
Minister for Water Resources Hari Prasad Pandey has said the cost of
the project could be brought down by 120 million dollars.
The minister is scheduled to visit the World Bank headquarters in
Washington later this month, where he is expected to insist on
slashing the cost of the project.
----------------------------------------------------------------- Nepali Ambassador meets protesting workers in Seoul
Excerpts from South Korean News Agency (via BBC)
The Nepalese ambassador to Tokyo, Purushottam Lal Shrestha, who
also serves as the ambassador to Seoul, flew into Seoul today and met
with 13 Nepalese workers who have been staging a sit-in protest in
front of a Church in Seoul for the past seven days demanding return of
their passports, wage payment incash and treatment according to Korean
Labor law. The ambassador said that he would discuss the situation
with the South Korean government. Earlier, the ambassador visited the
Korean Federation of Small Business in Yoido and told federation
officials his government would call back the workers home as soon as
his negotiations with the Korean government are completed. The
federation made arrangements for the workers'training and employment
----------------------------------------------------------------- WHO aids Nepal
The World Health Organization (WHO) has promised to continue its aid
to nepal for launching various health programs in 1995. In an
agreement signed between WHO and the Nepali government today, the
organization has agreed to provide a total of 1.65 million us dollars
for 25 projects on intensified health development action, disease
control, continued development of the health system, enhanced support
to the integrated national food and nutrition program. (Xinhua)
India advises bilaterial discussions to resolve refugee crisis
Excerpts from Iranian News Agency report (via BBC)
India has advised Nepal and Bhutan to resolve the issue of
Bhutanese refugees in Nepal bilaterally and in the spirit of good
neighbourliness. This was said by the Indian prime minister,
P. V. Narasimha Rao, in response to the request for India's mediation
by the governments of Nepal and Bhutan to help them solve this
------------------------------------------------------------------ Airplane Crash Kills One
A twin otter operated by the Royal Nepal Airlines Corporation
crashed this afternoon in Kathmandu, killing its pilot and injuring 24
others, including 22 passengers on board. The pilot died in Teaching
Hospital and the injured are being treated in two hopsitals. The plane
crashed in a field soon after take off from the Kathmandu airport. The
cause of the crash is not yet known. RNAC operates 12 aging
twin-otters which it is planning to replace with new aircraft. (Xinhua)
------------------------------------------------------------------ Land Reform Commission Formed
Excerpts from Xinhua report
The Nepali government has set up a 15-member high level land reform
commission to resolve problems relating to land, according to Radha
Krishna Mainali, the minister for agriculture, land reform and
management. Speaking in parliament, he said that the commission was
constituted with a view to finding ways of ensuring maximum
utilization of land, employment opportunities, increase in production
and productivity in agricultural sector, and of ending present
unscientific land system and dual ownership of land so as to ensure
social justice. The commission will submit its report to the
government within three months, mainali said.
Nepali police arrest six Sri Lankans
Excerpts from UPI report
Immigration police in Nepal have arrested six Sri Lankans accused
of operating a human smuggling operation, officials said Tuesday.
Home Ministry officials said the group had been using forged visas and
passports to illegally send people to various parts of the
world. Police raided a house in suburban Katmandu and arrested six Sri
Lankans who had been living in Nepal for the ''last four to five
years,'' the home ministry said. The ministry did did not say whether
the Sri Lankans were Tamils or Sinhalese. Indian press reports have
in the past linked Tamils living in Nepal to the Tamil sepatarist
movement in the island republic. The ministry said the leader of the
gang was living in Nepal under an Indian alias. The immigration
police recovered forged passports, visas, embossing machines and false
documents from the home, ministry officials said.
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 1995 09:37:46 +0700
To: Nepal Digest <firstname.lastname@example.org>
From: Suman Kumar Manandhar <email@example.com>
Suraj Rai's comments that the matrimonials section in TND will promote
dowry may not be justified as long as the said section does not contain a
field such as
"Dowry demanded : US$ 50,000 (negotiable)".
Suman Kumar Manandhar
Asian Institute of Technology
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 1995 00:50:10 -0500 (EST)
From: Ashutosh Tiwari <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: Nepal Digest <email@example.com>
This was forwarded to me, honest to God!, by a party who pefers to
remain in the bakground while I discreetly handle his lami-ing work:
Please feel free to send me emails, which I would then forward to
[Warning: I should NOT be held responsible if your arrangement does not work, or if you do not get pukka replies!]
jaat: bahun (ba-hoinan, that is, partially Americanized; 15 years in the
US.) ghar: Kathmandu, Sanepa. haal: In an MBA program at a top-rated b-school on the West Coast of
Amrika. But about to check out of the Hotel California for NYC. oo.mare: Mid-twenties and going up. roochi: patra-mitra.ta garnu; TND padh.nu; business chalau.nu; momo khanu.
interested in philosophy, poetry, Hajmola and bed-time stories. lakchya: paisa kamau.nu; after that, garib-guru.baa ko sewa garnu.
Later, return to Nepal and bp ko sapana saakaar parnu. Looking for: Any nepali woman in her early to late 20s who enjoys
Woody Allen, candle-lit dinners, Monty Python, Monet,
Hari Prasad Churasiya,
and reads the New York Review of Books, and who talks
likes a feminist but acts like a down-home sidha-sadha
gharelu pukka Nepali aaimai. Ability to sew, cook
and make desserts and do sewa of the sasu-sasura would be
desired . . . but not required.
That's it. If you think this is a joke, think of the Eurythmics, the British
pop band: Would I lie to you?
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 1995 10:32:33 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Kathryn S. March" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Information on devanagri fonts for IBM
Does anyone know about user-friendly DEVANAGRI fonts that can be used with
Word Perfect 6.0 on an IBM?
Ideally, I am seeking fonts that could be used from the ROMAN character
typewriter (i.e. without having to teach my fingers a new keyboard). I have
tried a set called "Don Juan" without much success. But I am eager to learn
and know about any others that might be available.
Please either answer on the NEPAL DIGEST or write me directly at
Thank you--it's wonderful to have this medium to ask such a question.
Kathryn S. March
Associate Professor of Anthropology,
Women's Studies & Asian Studies
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 1995 11:57:41 -0500 (EST)
From: Aevendra Lohani <email@example.com>
Subject: Nepal Human Rights Committee - USA
Who is this Nepal Human Rights Committee and what do they believe in.
What is the agenda and what is the goal ?
Does empathy in some of its activity automatically mean supporting any
specific idealogy in Nepal ? Is this just another prapaganda until some
one from this group becomes the ambassador from Nepal ?
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 1995 13:10:41 -0500
Subject: Nepal trip report via WWW
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Scott Yost)
I have put together some pictures and a journal from my recent
vacation in Nepal, if anyone is interested. They are available
using a Web browser, such as mosaic. The address is
http://enigma.phys.utk.edu/~syost/nepal.html There are about a dozen photographs so far, mostly of mountains. The journal is transcribed from notes taken at the time, and has an entry for each day of the six-week trip.
Scott A. Yost (email@example.com) University of Tennessee, Knoxville
<A HREF="http://enigma.phys.utk.edu/~syost/">See my personal Web Site</A>
Now featuring photos from my recent trip to Nepal.
<IMG SRC="http://enigma.phys.utk.edu/~syost/images/nepal/everest.gif" >
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 95 14:15:06 EST
Subject: Budhanilkantha School
Going through the TND issue of Jan 19, I read, for about the 25th time, Ashu-
tosh Tiwari's dissatisfaction about the set-up of Budhanilkantha School. I'm
guessing that he wants to make sure that each and every reader of TND is aware
of the situations. Well, by now he has most probably succedded in doing so. My
suggestion to him is that if he really wants to do something about it, he shoul
d voice his feelings to the proper people or gov't officials in Nepal, who'd be
in a position to do so. Most of the peolpe who have access to TND, I believe,
wouldn't be in such a position, even if they shared Tiwari's "dissatisfaction",
just because of the fact that they are presently in the U.S. Sorry for boring
TND readers with the 26th argument about Budhanilkantha school.
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 95 09:18:00 EST
From: Anita Regmi <AREGMI@ERS.BITNET>
Subject: Disgust at Sirdar (whoever's behavior).
I wanted to tell how disgusted I was at the mentioned person's behavior.
If he cannot resolve his personal problems in private there is no need to
bring his dirty linens out in public. Do we want to reduce TND forum to
a "Oprah Winfrey Show". Come on, show some dignity of behavior. Having
relationships however superficial or "consummated" they may be is a part of
normal growing up. Similarly break ups are just as normal. If you can't
deal with it, seek a psychiatrist. Don't send vindictive poems to TND.
It reflects bad on you not her.
%%%%Editor's Note: On requests, proper name references will be %%%%%
%%%% ommited in future pieces. %%%%%
From: IA20062@MAINE.BITNET(M. Lama)
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 95 08:23:56 EST
Subject: Re - F2 Visa Denial
It is obvious that many of people loose their chances to come to the US. I
personally acknowledged the common problem for those people whether they are
applying for student visa or tourist visa is not being able to present thier
confidence for thier plans in the US. I have seen and heard that many of people
do not review all the documents that they have before they go to submit them to
the US Consular Office.
Let me tell you a short story, it may or may not be similar story of Mira. When
I meet a Nepali student at the US Consular Office in Kathmandu last June. In my
knowledge, he had sufficient documents that include a I-20 form, bank balance
(US:tax return) copies and letters from Foreign Student Advisor and Admission Office of his school. Furthermore, he has already been in college in the US a year and half, but he was denied in getting F-1 visa. The point I am trying to make is that he was unable to show his cofidence for how he is going to live, how and who is paying tuition fee how, long he will be in the school and what he intend to do after school and whether he plans to come back. His visa appli cation was rejected neither because he does not know how to speak english, nor because he did not have sufficient documents. Yes, I was there when he was bein g iterviewed by the Consular, one thing that struck me is that he was constantl y using the combined phrases think I will....". So, there is big different usin g "I think I will do...." and "I will do....".
I hope this will help a bit.
Date: Tue, 17 Jan 1995 17:13:21 CST
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Gregory Siskind, Attorney at Law)
To: The Nepal Digest
SISKIND'S IMMIGRATION BULLETIN
December 1994 - Special Issue
Published by Siskind and Susser, Attorneys at Law, 110 30th Avenue North,
Suite 1, Nashville, Tennessee 37203, United States of America, telephone:
615/320-9109, facsimile: 615/320-5681, email: Gsiskind@telalink.net, WWW
home page: http://www.telalink.net/vn/siskind/ .
Disclaimer: The information contained in this newsletter is not intended to
create an attorney client relationship and should not be construed as legal
advice. Any reliance on information contained herein is taken at the
reader's own risk.
This discussion is intended to address most of the major
questions many of you have asked me about the DV-96 Lottery.
The discussion includes sample forms to guide you in completing your own
What is the "Green Card" Lottery?
This discussion is intended to answer questions people
may have regarding the upcoming DV-96 lottery (better known as the
"green card lottery") and give directions for submitting a lottery
The U.S. Congress has authorized the allotment of 55,000
immigrant visas in the DV-96 category during Fiscal Year 1996.
Foreign nationals who are natives of countries determined by the
I.N.S. (according to a mathematical formula based upon population
totals and totals of specified immigrant admissions for a 5-year
period) are eligible to apply. The application period will begin
at 12:01 a.m. Eastern Time on January 31, 1995, and will end at
midnight on March 1, 1995.
Nationals of which countries are excluded?
China-mainland China and Taiwan (nationals of Hong Kong are
included), India, Philippines, Vietnam, South Korea, the United Kingdom
(Northern Ireland natives are eligible), Canada, Mexico, Jamaica, El Salvador, Columbia and the Dominican Republic.
How are visas allotted?
The DV-96 program apportions visa issuance among six
geographic regions (Africa, Asia, Europe, North America (other
than Mexico), Oceania, and South America (including Mexico,
Central America and the Caribbean). The world is divided up into
high and low admission regions and each of the six regions is
divided into high and low admission states. A greater portion of
the visas go to the low admission regions than to high admissions
regions. High admission states are entirely excluded from the
lottery (those states are listed above) and low admission states
compete equally with other low admission states in the same
region. No single state may receive more than 7% (3,850) of the
55,000 allotted visas. The allotment for this year is as follows:
North America: 8 (only the Bahamas is included)
South America: 2,407
Who is eligible to apply for the lottery?
To receive a DV-96 visa, an individual must be a native of
a low admission foreign state (described above). The individual
must have at least a high school education or its equivalent, or,
within the preceding five years, two years work experience in an
occupation requiring at least two years training or experience.
What does it mean to have a "high school education or its
"High School education or its equivalent" means the
successful completion of a twelve year course of elementary and
secondary education in the U.S. or successful completion in
another county of a formal course of elementary and secondary
education comparable to complete a 12 year education in the U.S.
or successful completion in another country of a formal cause of
elementary and secondary education comparable to completion of a
12 year education in the U.S. Passage of a high school
equivalency examination is not sufficient. It is permissible to
have completed one's education in less than 12 years or greater
than 12 years if the course of study completed is equivalent to a
U.S. high school education. Documentary proof of education
(including a diploma or school transcript) should NOT be submitted
with the application, but must be presented to the consular office
at the time of formally applying for an immigrant visa
What does it mean to have "two years work experience in an
occupation requiring at least two years training or
The determination of which occupations require at least
two years of training or experience shall be based upon the
Department of Labor's Dictionary of Occupational Titles. If the
occupation is not listed in the DOT, the Department of State will
consider alternate evidence. Please Email or write me if you
need to check the DOT (this will probably not be necessary for the
vast majority of you since most of you have high school degrees or
the equivalent. As with proof of education, documentary proof of
work experience should not be submitted with the application, but
must be presented to the consular office at the time of a formal
immigrant visa application.
Can I be a "native" of a country other than the country in which I
A native is both someone born within one of qualifying
countries and someone entitled to the "charged" to such country
under Section 202(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Thus
someone may be (1) charged to the country of birth of his/her
spouse; (2) a minor dependent child can be charged to the country
of birth of a parent; and (3) an applicant born in a country of
which neither parent was a native may be charged to the country of
birth of either parent. If one claims to be a native of a country
other than where one was born, he/she must include a statement to
that effect on the lottery application and must show the country
of chargeability on the application envelope (see discussion of
the application form and envelope).
Will applying for the lottery affect one's ability to
receive a nonimmigrant visa?
Probably not. Technically, filing a visa lottery
application is equivalent to filing an immigrant petition.
According to source at the Department of State, a consulate will
only be notified IF the person is selected in the lottery. An
individual who is not chosen is on his honor to state that he/she
applied for the lottery. Theoretically, if your name is selected
in the lottery, you may have trouble renewing nonimmigrant status
while waiting for your name to be cleared for processing (see
discussion on the postselection process for securing a green
card). This should only be a temporary problem since permanent
residency should eventually be awarded. There is still a risk that
you will fail to be deemed eligible for the DV-96 visa or the
Department of State will have overestimated the number of
individuals to select in the lottery (see discussion on how the
selection process works). However, one lawyer I spoke with stated
that over the last several years, he has instructed his clients to
answer the question on the OF 156 concerning previous immigrant
visa applications as follows: "My lawyer entered me in the AA1
[this year the DV-96] lottery." He reports that he has never had a
problem reported. The Department of State may be issuing an
advisory letter on this issue soon and I will post a message to
the group. I have yet to hear of anyone denied a visa because of a previous lottery application.
Do I need to be in lawful visa status to compete?
An individual who is in the U.S. need NOT be in lawful
status to compete in the lottery. However, the Department of
State has indicated that it will share information with the
Immigration and Naturalization Service for the "formulation,
amendment, administration and enforcement" of the country's
Does it matter whether I am or am not in the U.S.?
Individuals who otherwise meet the requirements for
competition in the lottery, may compete whether they are in the
United States or in a foreign country.
Are there any limitations on the number of entries I can send in
for the lottery?
Each individual is limited to one application in the
lottery. If more than one application is received, the individual
will be totally disqualified. Note: More than 400,000 applicants
were disqualified in the last lottery due to multiple
May a husband and wife each submit a separate application?
Yes. If otherwise qualified, a husband and a wife may each submit
one lottery application. If either is selected in the lottery, the
other would be entitled to derivative status.
Is there a minimum age to apply for the lottery?
There is not a minimum age to apply for the lottery. However, the
education/work experience requirements will effectively preclude
most people under 18 from applying.
May I adjust status in the U.S. if I am selected?
An applicant may adjust status (switch to permanent
residency in the U.S.) if they meet the normal requirements for
adjusting status with the INS (including not having previously
been out of visa status). Applicants who adjust must first send
the forms they receive from the National Visa Center back to the
National Visa Center. In order to apply for adjustment of status,
the INS must be able to complete action on the case before
September 30, 1996.
How does the selection process work?
The National Visa Center in New Hampshire will receive
all applications. Upon receipt, the NVC will place the letter
into one of six geographic regions and assign the letter an
individual number. Within each region, the first letter randomly
selected will be the first person registered, the second letter
selected will be the second person registered, etc. When a case
is registered, the applicant will immediately be sent a
notification letter which will give visa application instructions.
About 100,000 persons, both principal applicants and their
spouses and children, will be registered. Since it is probable
that some of the first 55,000 persons registered will not apply
for a DV-96 visa, this figure is assumed to eventually be reduced
to about 55,000. However, there is a risk that some applicants
will be left out. According to the Department of State, all
applicants will be informed promptly of their place on the list.
Each month visas will be issued, according to registration lottery
rank order, to those ready for visa issuance for that month. Once
55,000 visas are issued, the program ends. Registrants for this
year's lottery will have to apply for a visa before September 1995
at the latest. You must be prepared to act promptly if your name
How will I know if I was not selected?
The State Department will not notify applicants who are
not selected. The only way you will know that you are not
selected is if you have not received a registration notification
letter before the date the INS officially states that it has stopped notifying people (expected to be done within three months of March 1, 1995).
Is there an application fee to enter the lottery?
No. There is no fee for submitting a lottery application. If you win the
lottery, you will pay the regular visa fees paid by any immigrant visa
applicant at the time of visa issuance.
Can someone selected in the lottery receive a waiver of
any of the grounds of visa ineligibility?
No. There is no special provision for the waiver of any
grounds of visa ineligibility other than those provided for in the
Immigration and Nationality Act. Also, unlike in previous years,
holders of J 1 visas with a two year home residency requirement
will not be able to receive a waiver of this requirement by virtue
of being selected in the lottery. A holder of a J visa can still
enter the lottery, but he/she will have to qualify for a residency
waiver in the same manner as is normally required to get such a
waiver. Because all visas must be issued by the end of September
1996, individuals who have not yet begun their home residency are
effectively precluded (unless they are otherwise eligible for a
May someone apply for a DV-96 visa if they are already registered
in another visa category
In what region is my native country assigned?
Central African Republic
Cote d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
Sao Tome and Principe
China-Taiwan (a "state" within the meaning
of the Act)
Hong Kong (a "state" within the meaning of
United Arab Emirates
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of
Montenegro (a "state" for purposes of the
Act; Serbia and Montenegro have
proclaimed the formation of a
joint independent state, but
this entity has not been
formally recognized as a state
by the United States.)
Northern Ireland (a "state" within the
meaning of the Act)
Serbia (a "state" for purposes of the Act;
Serbia and Montenegro have
proclaimed the formation of a joint
independent state, but this entity
has not been formally recognized as
a state by the United States.)
Vatican City (an independent city under the
jurisdiction of the Holy See)
(4) North America
Micronesia, Federated States of
Papua New Guinea
(6) South America, Mexico, Central America, and
Antigua and Barbuda
St. Kitts and Nevis
St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Trinidad and Tobago
How do I apply for the lottery?
There is no form for the DV 1 lottery. All that is
required is that the proper information is typed or clearly
printed in the Roman alphabet on a plain sheet of paper.
Each application must take the following form:
1. APPLICANT'S FULL NAME
Last Name, First Name and Middle Name
(Underline Last Name/Surname/Family Name)
Example: Doe, John James
2. APPLICANT'S DATE AND PLACE OF BIRTH
Date of Birth: Day, Month, Year
Example: 15 November 1961
Place of Birth: City/Town, District/County,Province,County
Example: Munich, Bavaria, Germany
3. NAME, DATE AND PLACE OF BIRTH OF APPLICANT'S SPOUSE
[Note: Do not list parents as they are not entitled to derivative status]
4. APPLICANT'S MAILING ADDRESS AND NEAREST CONSULATE
Be sure the address is complete since this is where
notification will be sent if the application is selected. A
telephone number is optional. Also list location of U.S. Consular
office closest to current residence or last residence prior to
5. APPLICANT'S NATIVE COUNTRY IF DIFFERENT FROM
COUNTRY OF BIRTH
The application should be placed in an envelope which is between
6 inches and 10 inches (15 cm to 25 cm) in length and between 3 1/2
inches and 4 1/2 inches (9 cm to 11 cm) in width.
In the upper left hand corner of the front of the
envelope must be the country of which the applicant is a native.
Typed or clearly printed below the country must be the same name
and mailing address of the applicant as are shown on the
Example: New Zealand
Doe, John James [NOTE: Underline family name]
1111 Main Street
Nashville, Tennessee 37204
Where do I send the application?
Applications must be sent by regular mail or air mail
(not by hand delivery, telegram, or any means requiring
acknowledgment such as registered mail or express mail) to one of
the six following addresses, depending upon the region of the
applicant's native country.
Note carefully the importance of using the correct postal zip code
for each region:
ASIA: DV-96 Program
National Visa Center
Portsmouth, NH 00210, U.S.A.
SOUTH AMERICA: DV-96 Program
National Visa Center
Portsmouth, NH 00211, U.S.A.
EUROPE: DV-96 Program
National Visa Center
Portsmouth, NH 00212, U.S.A.
AFRICA: DV-96 Program
National Visa Center
Portsmouth, NH 00213, U.S.A.
OCEANIA: DV-96 Program
National Visa Center
Portsmouth, NH 00214, U.S.A.
NORTH AMERICA: DV-96 Program
National Visa Center
Portsmouth, NH 00215, U.S.A.
DISCLAIMER: This file is not intended to create an attorney client
relationship. The information contained in this file is not
intended to be legal advice.
%% END OF "THE NEPAL DIGEST". %%
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