The Nepal Digest - June 22, 1997 (10 Ashadh 2054 BkSm)

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The Nepal Digest Sunday June 22, 97: Ashadh 10 2054BS: Year6 Volume63 Issue 2

Today's Topics:

                   Patriotism Galore
                   Nepali News
                   For What Its Worth
                   KURA-KARI; Economics, Politics, Foreign Policy.
                   "Top ten list" from The Kathmandu Post
                   Nepali women work to save the villages
                   Tidbits from Columbus, Ohio
                   A Nepali Play in Translation

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 * TND (The Nepal Digest) Editorial Board *
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 * The Nepal Digest: General Information info-tnd@nepal.org *
 * Chief Editor: RJP Singh (Open Position) a10rjs1@mp.cs.niu.edu *
 * Columnist: Pramod K. Mishra pkm@acpub.duke.edu *
 * SCN Correspondent: Rajesh Shrestha (Open Position) rajs@aleph0.clarku.edu *
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 * TND Archives: http://library.wustl.edu/~listmgr/tnd/ *
 * TND Foundation: http://www.nepal.org info-tnd@nepal.org *
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 * +++++ Food For Thought +++++ *
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 * "Heros are the ones who give a bit of themselves to the community" *
 * "Democracy perishes among the silent crowd" -Sirdar_Khalifa *
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****************************************************************** Date: Sun, 08 Jun 1997 13:11:17 EDT To: The Nepal digest Editor <nepal-request@cs.niu.edu> From: "Pramod K. Mishra" <pkm@acpub.duke.edu> Subject: Patriotism Galore

Dear Editor,

        I don't think it'd be the violation of his civil rights if I claimed Arun Gupto to be a friend. But I must point out the basic flaws of his piece "Western Perspective on Nepal: ek chintan." There is no doubt that the West (if it means the hegemony of Europe and things European) has eyes with which it has seen and made unseen, understood and misunderstood, helped and exploited, saved and maimed, freed and colonized whatever has been non-Western in the five hundred years of its ascendancy. But as Helen Abdzadi points out in the previous issue of TND, Arun's whole point in his gossip column is self-defeating and self-contradictory.

        The Nepali expatriate who ridiculed Arun's friend's English or the English of the professors in Kathmandu ("Do they know good English?") and the one who congratulated on the state-of-the-art English curriculum at Kirtipur--both these people, whoever they were, were both perceptive and shortsighted, wise and foolish (forgive me, folks, for strong words here).

        It's long been the habit of the colonized and the ruled to live by the standards of their colonizers and rulers. And in this respect my friend Arun is not much different than the man who ridiculed the English of the English professors at Kirtipur. Whereas my friend Arun suffers from Patriotism Galore syndrome, the man who ridiculed the English of the English professors suffers from another syndrome, the snobbishness whose roots go back to the feudalsim and colonialism of the Received Pronunciation of English aristocracy. This snobbishness is both self-defeating and ignorant. The question of the English language
(Helen's interesting thesis needs to be further examined) is a little too complex to indulge in here.

        Instead of asking whether something was up-to-date, both the admirer of up-to- dateness and Arun should have asked another, more fundamental, question: What gives birth to the state of the art, the cutting edge, the up-to-date? Is up-to-dateness a matter of borrowing alone or a result of self-regeneration and perpetual renewal? Indeed, a continuous process of discarding the outdated present and searching for the better- working future? Does this process have any place in Arun's Nepali patriotism?

        Sure, Nepal is not all poor. Look at the number of deaths of the mountaineers atop the Everest in spite of all their state-of-the-art equipment. Yet, there is no dearth of moneyed crowds impatient to scale the peaks in Nepal. Seldom does anyone say (except for the custom's officials at certain airports) that Nepali people are bad; everyone says they have a hospitable manner and rich smile. What Arun seems to be saying in effect in his gossip is that it dunn matter if Kathmandu is like hell with its smoke and dust, if people in Nepali villages die without medicines or doctors are scoundrels, prescribing vitamin pills for cancer, if politicians are opportunists, civil servants corrupt, the aristocracy selfish. As long as some dunderhead expatriate Nepali, complaining to Arun before, has a change of heart and praises the English curriculum at Kirtipur as up-to-date, God's in heaven, all's well on earth.

        There's a world of difference between complacency and self-dignity, between snobbishness and self-respect. And I'm sure Arun knows it. Arun would do a yeoman's service to his country if he turned his patriotism galore into merciless analysis and criticism of what is wrong with his country. Nepali people are just coming to from a thirty-year Panche overdose of self-congratulation and patriotism galore.

        And this brings me to another related, point. KTM Post needs writers from the US and other overseas countries to write interesting, clear, relevant essays for its pages, including the gossip columns. The writer is paid Rs. 500.00 a piece upon publication. I think it's an opportunity for people overseas with better English and a dry smile at the poor English of the English professors at Kirtipur to demonstrate the health of years of wanton grazing in the English-speaking pastures. The fax # of KTM Post is the following: 977-1-470-018.
          
****************************************************************** Date: June 3, 1997 To: The Nepal Digest <tnd@nepal.org> Subject: Nepali News

Source: The Kathmandu Post Paras Shah will be punished: Police By a Post Reporter

KATHMANDU, June 17 - Action has been initiated against Paras Shah, son of Prince Gyanendra, who allegedly killed a driver and seriously injured a passenger last Wednesday night when his Pajero collided with a taxi, police claimed Tuesday. The claim comes at a time when people were wondering if Royal figures were immune to existing laws. The police, however, refused to formally confirm that Shah in question is in fact Prince Gyanendra's son. The Superintendent of Police (SP) in Kathmandu, Dilip Kumar Shrestha, told newsmen at a monthly press meet that a letter has been forwarded to the Chhauni military hospital where Paras Shah is undergoing treatment.
"We have asked the hospital authorities to send Shah to the district police office for inquiry as soon as he recovers," Shrestha said, adding the case against Shah is proceeding as in the case of any other citizen. According to newspaper reports, Shahs vehicle was hurtling from Kamaladi when it hit the taxi at the Putali Sadak crossroads mid-night Wednesday. The taxi was coming from Dilli Bazaar. The taxi driver, Sanu Kaji Maharjan of Kalimati, died on the spot. He was just 18 year old. The passenger, Kedar Simkhada of Tahachal, was admitted to the Bir Hospital. Reports said that Shah, accompanied by a foreign girl and an unidentified person, was drunk when the accident occurred. Earlier that night, Shah had hit a Maruti van in front of the Yak and Yeti Hotel. The taxi, which Maharjan had recently bought on instalment, was extensively damaged on impact. The incident came at the end of a long chain of allegations of misbehaviour against Shah. The young prince has been accused of, among others, slapping a traffic inspector, firing shots to intimidate police officers and bullying the staff of the Everest Hotel.

Source: The Kathmandu Post What's CPN-UML's political philosophy ? By Pradip Koirala

In Nepal, an alliance of seven small communist parties including CPN-UML supported the Nepali Congress led the movement of 1989. Yet, their sincerity in supporting the movement for democracy within a constitutional monarchy is still being questioned. CPN-UML agreed to the tripartite agreement between the King, Nepali Congress and Communist alliance. This brought the democratic constitution of 1990. After the promulgation, the communists officially accepted the constitution but said that they did it with "critical support". No doubt, in different conventions voices against multi-party democracy have been heard. In the fifth general national convention, the CPN-UML decided in favour of one party communist republic in Nepal even though multi-party system and constitutional monarchy are irrevocable principles of our constitution. The CPN-UML, however, accepted multi-party democracy. This, however, is only a short-run strategic act in the process of establishing a one party communist republic. Man Mohan Adhikari, as the prime minister in CPN-UML minority government also hinted the underlying motives guiding the CPN-UML during a chat with the foreign press. He had then commented Monarchy in Nepal should remain for a certain period of time. Other CPN-UML leaders like Khadga Oli, CP Mainali and DPM Gautam in a meeting recently organized to commemorate the establishment of communist party in Nepal also pledged to bring about a one party communist republic in Nepal. Madhav Nepal, the CPN-UML general secretary has however issued a party statement instructing party workers not to give opinions against multi-party democracy and constitutional monarchy, the irrevocable principles of 1990 constitution. MKN also reiterated that CPN-UML is committed to the present constitution and its important elements like constitutional monarchy and multi-party democracy. The question therefore arises whether a statement by CPN-UML general secretary can go against the official party decision that CPN-UML is committed to bring about a one-party communist rule in the fifth general national convention? Or, is Madhav Nepal's statement merely intended to hoodwink Prime Minister Chand into continuing the UML-RPP alliance? It goes without saying that ex-panchayat leader Chand is a staunch monarchist. Lokendra Bahadur Chand, the current prime minister, has already warned CPN-UML not to give any opinion against multi-party democracy and constitutional monarchy, the two irrevocable principles of the 1990 constitution. To any communists, the end is what is important, whatever the means. Communist party workers, who themselves are well acquainted with communist theories understand the interpretation of Madhav Nepal's statement. Communist party workers know that the secretary's words are only meant to deceive those who find CPN-UML's commitment to democracy questionable. Deputy Prime Minister Bam Dev Gautam is clear about the long term objective of CPN-UML. He says CPN-UML is in the process of gathering strength to speed up towards one party communist republic. But, to do that, according to him, CPN-UML needs a landslide victory both in local and mid-term elections to take rapid steps towards establishing one party communist rule. This dream of CPN-UML can turn into a nightmare if PM Lokendra Bahadur Chand is not taken into confidence. In this context, can general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal's statement carry any other political implication?

Source: The Kathmandu Post Counseling for broken hearts

KATHMANDU - Raveena, like many other girls, feels she is sick and tired of her life. She just wants to end her life as she doesnt see a ray of hope. Like other girls, she too is a victim of a tragic love story - but in real life. She says she has been betrayed by her boyfriend despite her true and sincere love. But so far she has not found a proper person with whom she could share her problem. Shes also not aware of the availability of any counselor in the Valley to confide in and seek advice. Raveena is not the only one. There are many girls in the city who share the same trauma. Another girl, Rita, has a different kind of story to tell. Rita has been used by a married man as a sex-toy for his entertainment. "He just lured me, and I could not say No to him; it just happened I can't recall how it happened," she says, while explaining how she entered into a sexual relationship with him. Since then she has been more like his Keep because his wife is away. Although she had had a physical relationship with her boyfriend earlier, the present relationship is dragging her into a new kind of psychological stigma . On the one hand, she just wants to end this relationship, and on the other, she is finding it difficult to do so because she has become a slave to sex and prefers to keep it going from her inner- most sanctum, but, she pretends of not liking it. Yet, the truth is she wishes to get out of it. Rita is perplexed and does not know where to go for counselling due to her fear of parents and relatives. Of late, suicide as the subterfuge of sour marriages and split love affairs is rampantly on the rise. This kind of pitiable crime can be positively prevented if proper counselling can be provided to victims in time. In Kathmandu itself, counseling centres like Sumitra has been providing advice free of cost : by correspondence, entertaining phone-callers and even face-to-face. However, it seems, they are yet to get publicity and public acceptance due to lack of information about their activities. Like Sumitra, there are a few other NGOs that provide the needed advice. Fearing a counselor might know their identity, girls feel unsafe to make a call or even to write to them. Another reason being that they don't feel at ease to disclose their secrets fearing it would bring shame to them and their family. Recently, an Indian weekly magazine Sunday extensively published a well researched report on incest. The Last Taboo, the title given to the report, cites many examples about this unholy relationship between close relatives. Although the report itself is not based on data, there are quite a few things that people want to know about it. Basically, it is based on calls and reports given by victims themselves to counselors asking for help to soothe their inner guilt and shame. It has also stated the names of a few NGOs with their addresses which are working as counselors for Helpline. It's in fact, an eye-opener to those many who think incest is not a big problem in India. Situation in Nepal too is not very different from India. The only difference is that it has come out in black- and -white in India, but not in Nepal. Such types of reports are the need of todays journalism. However, one question that immediately comes in the mind is who will bell the cat first? Ours is still a closed society, and needs great courage and skillful personnel to bring such reports out in print both by the victims and others. Nevertheless, you can bet your last penny on one thing timely counseling saves lives of many whose distress and desperation knows no bounds. Both girls and boys, who are in need of expert counseling, should not allow their agony and solitude to consume them. The more you share, the more you feel comforted and relaxed. It is prudent on the part of all counselling centres to provide their helpline number and address in newspapers so that people-in-distress can get proper counseling in time.
(The names of girls have been changed to protect their identity.)

Source: The Reuters FEATURE-Rights groups in Nepal battle vice traffic By Gopal Sharma

 KATHMANDU, May 22 (Reuter) - In the cradle of the world's highest peaks and
 a stunning Himalayan landscape, human rights activists have intensified a fight
 against trafficking in women, an ugly offshoot of poverty.
 But they say they feel handicapped by ingrained social habits and political
 indifference to the vice trade.
 Poor, illiterate and jobless girls in Nepal are increasingly tricked into
 red light areas in neighbouring India where they are forced into prostitution.
 Women's groups say up to 160,000 women from the Himalayan kingdom may
 have been lured to Indian cities on false promises of a better life.
 There are no official figures, but most of these vulnerable young women have a
 common fate -- life in the brothels.
 Gauri Pradhan, executive coordinator of Child Workers in Nepal (CWIN), a
 non-governmental group, said governments in the region lacked the political
 will to solve the problem of trafficking in women.

 ``Thousands of women are beaten, tortured and abused. The governments are not
 giving any attention to this,'' she said.
 A conference of the Asian Women's Human Rights Council (AWHRC) in
 Kathmandu recently urged South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation
 (SAARC) countries to discuss trafficking in women at the summit level.
 India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh form the
 seven-nation group. Poor women from Bangladesh are also among major victims of
 girl-trafficking.

 AIDS THREAT MAKES VICE TRAFFIC WORSE

 Young girls, tricked into leaving their homes and sold off to prostitution
 rackets, suffer confinement and physical abuse.
 Activists say the price paid for a girl varies according to her age, facial and
 physical beauty, with some fetching up to 25,000 rupees ($440) or more.
 The threat of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is seen providing a
 push to trafficking in girls.
 ``They (the brothel owners) are looking for virgins because of the fear of
 HIV," said Meena Poudel, programme coordinator with the British voluntary
 organisation, Oxfam.
 Nepal is among the world's poorest nations with an annual per capita income
 barely touching $200.
 Most of its land is either under snow or comprises barren hills, making life
 difficult for more than 80 percent of the kingdom's 21 million people who
 depend on agriculture.

 UNEQUAL LAW, POOR ENFORCEMENT

 Motorable roads do not reach all districts. Villages lack drinking water, basic
 health care and electricity.
 Marrying off daughters is considered a major responsiblity in rural Nepal, but
 poor parents are often hard-pressed to afford increasingly expensive weddings.
 Marriages are often conducted before children come of age, but young grooms who
 go to towns or to India in search of jobs marry again in their new homes or
 never return to their homeland.
 Nepal has tough anti-trafficking laws and those convicted for selling a woman
 face up to 20 years in jail.
 ``But the implementation (of legislations) is loose,'' said Durga Ghimire,
 chairwoman of ABC/Nepal, an anti-trafficking organisation.
 Girls face discrimination on several fronts.
 Activists say major political parties have failed to agree on proposed
 legislation to give daughters equal right with sons to inherit property.
 Under the existing laws only those girls who remain unmarried until 35 years of
 age can claim a share in their parental property.

 STRUGGLING DAUGHTERS, GULLIBLE PARENTS

 Young girls struggle hard to help their poor families, carrying water on
 their backs up and down hilly trails, and fetching fodder and firewood from
 fast depleting forests.
 Activists say unscrupulous touts target these young women who easily fall prey
 to their false promises of well-paid jobs in cities, or marriage to rich
 partners.
 Gullible parents often consent to such arrangements, hoping their daughters
 would bring home some savings. But the girls end up in brothels, and only a
 few manage to escape.
 Last year, more than 100 girls rescued from brothels in Bombay, India's
 business capital, were rehabilitated in Nepal.
 Families often refuse to accept them back for fear of losing prestige in a
 society that attaches a stigma to prostitution. REUTER

****************************************************************** Date: Wed, 04 Jun 1997 23:13:27 CDT To: tnd@nepal.org From: "Rajpal Jwala Pratap Singh" <a10rjs1> Subject: For What Its Worth

Source: soc.culture.nepal

Watching influx of postings on PRT and other comments, I couldn't resist but to include the following piece. The piece was published on January 10, 1776. The author is Thomas Paine who worked for General George Washington, the first CEO of USA.

All comments welcome!
-RJPS

Excerpts from "Common Sense" by Thomas Paine
--------------------------------------------

"Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one; for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries by a government, which we might expect in a country without government, our calamities is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer.

Government, like dress, is the badge of lost innocence; the palaces of kings are built on the ruins of the bowers of paradise. For were the impulses of conscience clear, uniform, and irresistibly obeyed, man would need no other lawgiver; but that not being the case, he finds it necessary to surrender up a part of his property to furnish means for the same prudence which in every other case advises him out of two evils to choose the least."

.....
.....

"I know it is difficult to get over local or long standing prejudices, yet if we will suffer ourselves to examine the component parts of the English constitution, we shall find them to be the base remains of two ancient tyrannies, compunded with some new republican materials.

First - The remains of monarchical tyranny in the person of the king.

Secondly - The remains of aristocratical tyranny in the persons of the peers.

Thirdly - The new republican materials, in the persons of the commons, on whose virtue depends the freedom of the country.

The two first, by being hereditary, are independent of the people; whrefore in a constitutional sense they contribute nothing towards the freedom of the state.

To say that the commons is a check upon the king, presupposses two things. First - That the king is not to be trusted without being looked after, or in other words, that a thirst for absolute power is the natural disease of monarchy. Secondly - That the commons, by being appointed for that purpose, are either wiser or more worthy of confidence than the crown.

But as the same constitution which gives the commons a power to check the king by witholding the supplies, gives afterwards the king a power to check the commons, by empowering him to reject their other bills; it again supposes that the king is wiser than those whom it has already supposed to be wiser than him.

A MERE ABSURDITY!

There is something exceedingly ridiculous in the composition of monarcy; it first excludes a man from the means of information, yet empowers him to act in cases where the highest judgement is required. The state of a king shuts him from the world, yet the business of a king requires him to know it thoroughly; wherefore the different parts, unnaturally opposing and destroying each other, prove the whole character to be absurd and useless."

------

My comments:

More than 200 years ago, Thomas Paine gave a surgical fine tuned and a very logical argument under the title "Common Sense" which swept the American continet with overwhelming approval.

Today, I am hungry for a similar rational and logical viewpoints for both constitutional monarchy and republic. Perhaps some netters amongst us can throw some intriguing light. No emotional blah..blah please.

-rjps
"Democracy perishes among the silent crowd." - Sirdar_Khalifa

---------------------------------- Date: Mon, 09 Jun 1997 13:07:04 CDT To: tnd@nepal.org From: Anil Tuladhar Subject: Re: For What Its Worth

Source: soc.culture.nepal

Rajpal J.P. Singh (a10rjs1@cs.niu.edu) wrote:
: Excerpts from "Common Sense" by Thomas Paine
: --------------------------------------------
: There is something exceedingly ridiculous in the composition of
: monarcy; it first excludes a man from the means of information, yet
: empowers him to act in cases where the highest judgement is
: required. The state of a king shuts him from the world, yet the
: business of a king requires him to know it thoroughly; wherefore
: the different parts, unnaturally opposing and destroying each other,
: prove the whole character to be absurd and useless."

I liked this passage. But let us not forget that our life is full of such absurdities and paradoxes. What is needed is more rational thinking and analysis.

I think, we still need a king. Time has still not come for Nepalis that we could do without a king. As Girish wrote in his article, we desparately need a symbol of unity at this juncture to prevent further erosion in our political climate. But we need a reasonable king. We need a cheaper (i.e. not expensive, no pun intended) king. We can not afford kgs of gold in the name of princess's marriage. We can not afford millions of ruppees in the name of Royal family budget. These are the things to be considered while judging the need of a monarchy.

: More than 200 years ago, Thomas Paine gave a surgical fine tuned and
: a very logical argument under the title "Common Sense" which swept
: the American continet with overwhelming approval.

Let me remind you that Nepal is not America yet. So Thomas's "common sense", if forced on to Nepal, may not do any good yet. But I can not deny the alternatives. As we successfully curtailed the absolute power of king and made him a constitutional monarch, now I think, time has come to curtail the expenses related to the palace. If king is the symbol of our unity and he is patriotic, I am 100% sure that he will have no objection to this curtailment. He knows the living standard of a common nepali people. I think, he hates to be the richest king of the poorest people. If we are poor, he also has to be poor.

So the middle way between the monarchy and the republican is to have a clean, sober, less-expensive king as the symbol of our unity and pride.

If PRT really said that we do not need a king, then he was wrong. We do need a king but not an expensive one.

Now the question is whether the things which seem reasonable to us will be reasonable to him and his near and dears. If there is a conflict, then we will have to decided rationally again. Then we will have to ask ourselves seriously, "Do we need a monarchy?"

Anil

-------------------------------------- Date: Sun, 08 Jun 1997 22:43:13 CDT To: a10rjs1@cs.niu.edu From: "Rajpal J. Singh" <a10rjs1> Subject: Re: For What Its Worth

Source: soc.culture.nepal

Reflecting on Anil's comments......

    Thomas Paine published "Common Sense" over 200 years ago
    when the colonies and the setlers were living in quite
    a chaotic environment, if I can quote Mr. Paine.

    Sure Nepal's situation and American situation is a different
    one. Perhaps to a degree, no two situations can be alike. Each
    will have its own unique elements. What is interesting is the
    core not the subtle differences.

    At any rate, tangents aside, not being able to predict future
    events precisly, we can only move forward with the lessons we
    have learnt from the past. Hence, one would have to wonder if
    the wish for a benign (sp?) ruler can ever come true.

    If the saying "Good comes to the one who wait" still holds,
    perhaps its too early to fold the tents.

    Just my oppinion......

-RJPS
"Enterpreneurship and Philantropy: That is the way of life!" -Sirdar_Khalifa

***************************************************************** Date: Sat, 31 May 1997 01:12:37 -0400 (EDT) From: Apjoshi@aol.com To: Nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Make media research specific

Book Review by Ashutosh Tiwari Book: Mass Media and Democratization: (A country study of Nepal.) Edited by: Anand Aditya Published by: Institute for Integrated Development Studies, Kathmandu, 1996 Page: 260; Price: Rs. 300; US$ 20.

First, a fact, and then an observation. Fact: In the year 1996 alone, five 'national' broad-sheet newspapers appeared from the private sector in Kathmandu. So far, two of them (The Everest Herald, and, now going by the latest report Lokpatra too) have already folded. Others are struggling hard to shore up both the circulation and ad-revenues. Meantime, the competition has only gotten fiercer with the advent of a number of fortnightly and weekly magazines in Kathmandu. And that leads us to this observation: If one goes by the number of news-stands that have sprung up in almost every urban or semi-urban areas of Nepal, what becomes clear is that the choice of which Nepali magazines or newspapers to buy and to read has never been as overwhelming in Nepal as it is today. Besides, given the proliferation of satellite channels and the increasingly competitive private-sector presence in the media, the influence and the stronghold of government-owned media alone have never been shakier.

Against this backdrop, her comes a study in a book-form -- Mass Media and Democratization, 1996 -- that bemoans, perhaps echoing Nepal's conventional wisdom, about both "the long-felt absence of a truly independent and competitive media in the private sector," and "the dominant role of the government-owned media." The book, which has also been translated to Nepali, starts from an assumption that "democratization is a central prerequisite to the development of mass media". As the book's foreword makes it clear: Six years have gone by since the restoration of mullet-party democracy, and it is now time to take a good look at what's going on in the national communication sector -- defined broadly to include the press, the radio and the television. But look we do, and what do we find? A laboriously put-together study that both earnestly and ambitiously drives the cattle of details so hard
 -- page after page -- that it ultimately drops with a thud. Instead of issue-specific analyses that would have shown us how the public has or has not used the media to further its particular agendas, what we get from the first few sections of this book are broad semblances of theories sans specifics about their relevance in the Nepali context.

This is a let-down because the book's layout of different chapters is designed to give an impression that theories developed in the early chapters would help understand the results of surveys summarized afterward. But as the book unfolds, it becomes painfully clear that adoption of theories sheds little or no light on the examination of survey-results. The book's chapter two, for example, contains a few lines each on John Rawls's "veil of ignorance" and Immanuel Kant's "categorical imperative" But missing are discussions -- perhaps with some Nepal-drawn examples -- on why and how Rawls and Kant, together with Bentham and Mill, are relevant for the purpose of this study. It's one thing to cite (Western classical) theorists, and examine the extent to which they are helpful in deriving some sort of a 'code of conduct' for Nepali journalists or any journalists to refer to. But since the chapter, or indeed the entire book, attempts no such thing, I found it puzzling as to why western philosophical notions were brought up at all. If those behind the study wanted to provide a rigorous yet relevant treatment of the links between Nepal's democracy and mass media, then they would have done us a greater service by critically reviewing the extant literature on, say, Nepal-related political science, anthropology, sociology, public-policy issues and so on. Such an exercise would at least have placed media research in a broad, interdisciplinary context.

Likewise, the chapter on "what ails Nepal[i] mass media?" offers the usual culprits: A lack of access to and a poor distribution of newspapers, state-control over the most-visible forms of media apparatus, partisan journalism, centralization of media in urban areas, and so on and on. Again, missing are discussions on why the access to and the distribution of newspapers are poor, what the response of the peripheries has been to the centralized media-structures, and so on. These why's and how's are surely not too much to ask of this book which claims to have done "original research" while adhering to "substantial methodological rigor" to reach its conclusions. One example of such a how, not taken up in the book, would be: Amidst all the talks about the media's urban bias, how does one explain the editorial continuity, not to mention, the popularity, of village-based newspapers such as Palpa-based Deurali and Dang-based Gaun Ghar? Another chapter of the book is devoted to "media coverage". But the approach here is so broad that it is difficult to see to what extent the results could be of interest to other researchers. How exciting, for example, can it be to know how many times Deshanter or Gorkhapatra covered the broadly defined issues of the environment or health? More illuminating would have been an illustration of how the media covered, say, the Flood of 1993, and how the coverage, in turn, made people participate in a national tragedy of such a scale. Therein we would have seen the work of the press in helping people put such a particularly tragic event in a context consistent with their larger democratic rights and interests.
         Likewise, instead of another list of how many times the media covered general 'policy issues', far more interesting would have been a focused analysis of how the various representatives of the "rational actors"
(i.e. the public) used and abused the media to argue for and against, say, the Arun III hydro-power project. Again, such an analysis need by no means be exhaustive in and of itself, but it would at least give a better indication about the level of media-sophistication in Nepal. Ultimately, however, the study fails to generate excitement because of its own grand theoretical flirtations that are backed up with little or no issue-specific analyses. As a researcher, I would have preferred if the book had simply stated: We did surveys for this long a time, we crunched the numbers and here are the results. That would have been a credible claim, and the ensuing critiques could then deal with the study's methodological shortcomings. To its credit, the book does scrupulously present its statistical results/findings, together with a brief history of mass media in Nepal. All these will be of help to media researchers to understand some of the trends within -- and the potentials of -- Nepali media. That said, it's also time we demanded more issue-specific analyses that make use of theories to better explain Nepal-related media matters. (Originally published in : Kathmandu-based development magazine called Face to Face, April 1997) THE END.

***************************************************************** Date: Sat, 31 May 1997 19:18:46 -0400 (EDT) To: Nepal@cs.niu.edu From: Madhusudan Bhattarai <mbhatta@CLEMSON.EDU> Subject: KURA-KARI; Economics, Politics, Foreign Policy.

        RECENT DEVELOPMENTS AND SOME CONCERNS IN THE
                HYDROPOWER SECTOR IN NEPAL

        -Madhusudan Bhattarai, Clemson University,S.C., USA

During the last days of Deuba's government, environment in Kathmandu was warmed up not only by the political maneuvering but also by the agreement and disagreement on the hydropower projects, particularly Pancheswar, and Upper Seti. Bargaining for the agreements and visit by high profile corporate heads from the western countries have also raised, to some extent, the importance of Kathmandu in South Asia. Now the climate and high aspirations of Nepali from such hydropower project all have calmed down. At least for a while the center of concern at Kathmandu has shifted towards the local election, of course, also with the recent upsurge of Maoist movement in the mid-western region, etc. In addition, some of the political stalwarts also did not dare to charge that the fall of Deuba's government was somewhat related to the series of developments of the hydro agreements that were going on in Kathmandu at that time. If it is correct then, this also showed the other face of coin for the first time and has indicated how vulnerable the political institution in Kathmandu is.

Even in the U.S. Nepalese community in Boston area have recently initiated the talk, seminar, workshops and electronic convention mostly among Nepalese living outside of Nepal, and are again trying to keep alive the issue of development of Nepal's hydropower sector. Thanks to all those who initiated and formed the Hydropower Nepal Committee (HNC). Probably most of us have also read such news and announcements in some of the recent issues of The Nepal Digest (TND). Despite this development, it remains to be seen at what level, Nepali living in the US and out side of Nepal can contribute in this type of path-breaking development issues in Nepal. The success and outcome of the HNC in the future course would certainly provide some of the answers of this question, even if not to all of these. In this context, some of the recent developments and major concerns about the Hydro power sectors of Nepal, which are also raised recently in the media are summarized here with author's concluding remarks.

1. At least, the keen interest and willingness to invest even billions of dollars by these multinational corporations on such large scale Hydropower Projects in Nepal have proved that Nepal's Hydropower sector, on the basis of long term investment, is one of the most lucrative ventures in the whole region of South Asia. Otherwise, no doubt, these multinational corporations would have already shifted their priorities to other sectors, which in fact, they have been done untill now. Therefore, at this moment, it is worthy of analyzing, in the context of south Asia, what factors have led to sudden change in the foreign investment scenarios and have raised the importance of Nepal's hydropower sector so high level that some of the multinational companies are even ready to invest billions of dollars on this sector. 2. Equally, in this context, it is also important to remember that even for a less than one billion dollars Arun III project, Nepal had been begging with her open hand for more than a decade to the World Bank, Japan and to more than dozen of other major donors. They too finally declined, even after so many of their prior commitments and promises. In fact, the involvement of these multinational corporations and their eagerness to fund on it has, at once, dramatically changed the scenario. Now, the ball is in Singh Darbar' court, at least for a while. The final outcome depends on how efficiently the current generation of Nepali politicians and bureaucrats will be able to handle the situation that history has given to them. These political leaders
(of all the major parties) and the bureaucrats in Kathmandu have learned enough lessons from the havoc of ARUN III in the recent past. 3. The wave of privatization and liberalization in the Indian peninsula and in the whole region of South Asia has in fact changed the scenario dramatically. For the first time over the long history of hatred and antagonistic feelings, the politicians in the region are talking about the issues of economic development, regional trade and liberalization in the bilateral and multi-lateral talks, sidelining the usually heard issues of national pride, terrorism, releasing border tension, and sovereignty. Thats why SAFTA and sub-regional free trade zone were the major issues of recently concluded SARC summit at Male (Maldeves). Here, the emergence of India and China as giant economic forces has also made them some of the major power (energy) hungry countries in Asia. This opportunity, if properly utilized, could drastically change the development pace and trend in Nepal, which have been virtually at trivial level until now. 4. However, dealing in such huge projects, some are more than eight times the annual GDP of the country, Kathmandu also needs to take enough precautionary measures, such as maintaining adequate transparency, doing adequate homework and building national consensus before going to the agreement table. These were almost neglected subjects in the past starting from Koshi agreements in the early fifties to the Mahakali agreements in the early nineties. Moreover, there is equal chance that any mistake or negligence (either knowing or unknowing) by the politicians and bureaucrats dealing with such huge projects now could also submerge the country in the burden of foreign debt and obligations from which even coming few generations of Nepal could not come out of it. Any one interested in these events can learn enough lessons from the events in the Philippines in the recent past (high level political corruption during Marcos regime and its present stagnated economy in the whole region of ASEAN). Therefore, the development of proper political institutions (which is comprised of many sectors), and the procedures are also some of the crucial issues here. 5. Here, particularly, the administrative and technical incapability of NEA and Ministry of Water resources (high level of corruption) are some of the major bottle necks for the development of water resources sector in Nepal. Even in the Panchayat regime, water resource sector, compared to other development sector, was more closely linked with the sensitive political institution in the country, and the high level corruption in the sector then used to be well protected. Now also same trend is there though the connection points might have changed. Therefore, openness, project bidding through international standards, maintaining adequate transparency, and maintaining certain level of national debate and national consensus in dealing with such huge hydropower projects are always socially desirable than any in closed curtain agreements. Even 6 years of conflicting interest and hatred debate over the recent Mahakali agreement (of 91s), Nepal has not loosed any thing, rather significantly gain in its 1996 agreements compared to earlier one. This case is also a good lesson to all the Politician and decision makers in Kathmandu who go for signing such huge impact creating agreements with neighboring countries without a priori preparation and homework, and accepts whatever the terms and conditions set by the other parties. 6. Likewise, when the Singh Darbar (Prime Minister's Office in Kathmandu) starts to set the standard of "first come, first served basis" as the major criteria for granting such huge hydropower projects to interested multinational parties (without national consensus, and national debate), then of course every Nepali has to be concerned about it and should be apprehensive about such recent developments in Kathmandu. At least, maintaining of adequate national debate and involvement of representative other sectors of societies in such debate always would lead towards socially desirable and optimum out comes (except to the corrupt politicians). When the world bank's pulled back its hand from the ARUN III project in 1995, unlike the feelings at that time, now it seems Nepal has not loosed any opportunity. Instead of the World Bank's loan and uncertainty about export to India then, Tata Energy Company and other few parties are now ready to finance and even export to India. Instead of the world bank's term and conditions and huge burden of loan, now at least, Kathmandu can set terms and conditions of ARUN project which could be more in its favor than in the past.

From: MADHUSUDAN BHATTARAI 242, Barre Hall, Dept. of Agril & Applied Economics Clemson University Clemson. S.C. 29634-0355, USA. Fax: 864-656-5776 Tel: 864-656-7143 (off), 864-653-6344 (Res).

***************************************************************** Date: Sun, 1 Jun 1997 22:52:31 -0400 (EDT) From: Apjoshi@aol.com To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: "Top ten list" from The Kathmandu Post

(The Kathmandu Post's weekly Sunday Supplement has recently started publishing a weekly "top ten list" a la David Letterman. Each list is supposed to be based on Nepali context, and can be as stupid, funny, corny, sophomoric, brilliant, pun-ny, witty, hilarious, satirical, and childish as the contributor wants it to be. Feel free to e-mail/fax your own top ten lists, addressing them all to Mr. Sanjay Murthy at The Kathmandu Post. Here is a list that was published on Sunday, May 25, 1997.

TOP TEN QUESTIONS that are likely to be asked by the Judges to Nepali contestants at the Miss World-Nepal Pageant that's going to be held in Kathmandu in July 1997.

10. How did you celebrate the King's 25th Anniversary of Accession to the Throne?
(Answer: By reading about it all the time.)

09. When you grow up, what do you want to be?
(Answer: Three inches taller than I am now.)

08. If you were stranded on an island, what would you do?
(Answer: I'll just stay there. That's the way I, Cinderella, can avoid my step-mother.)

07. What would you do to make the Visit Nepal Year successful?
(Answer: I don't know. I'm trying to emigrate to Australia myself.)

06. What do you think is Nepal's most serious issue?
(Answer: Convincing the world again and again that Buddha was indeed born here.)

05. What is today's most pressing problem for a woman like yourself?
(Answer: Deciding between Nirula's and Wimpy on Durbar Marg for a bite of that greasy burger.)

05. What's your idea of a perfect man?
(Answer: Someone with a red Maruti car and lots of his father's money).

04. What's your opinion on what's happening in Zaire?
(Answer: Sorry, Yuba Manch never carried any article on that country.)

03. What profession would you choose for yourself?
(Answer: A few. First, I'll be a mini-Mother Teresa for a month, then a fashion-model, then an actress in Nepal's Kollywood, but eventually a rich guy's 'Trophy Wife'.)

02. What's your definition of beauty?
(Answer: Myself. My own self.)

01. Why are you in this beauty contest?
(Answer: Because I've nothing better to do.) THE END.

*************************************************************** Date: Mon, 02 Jun 97 18:10:52 GMT From: R.RAUNIYAR@lse.ac.uk To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu Subject: ....

          anyone know the whereabouts of rajiv rauniyar
          (tripureswore). the last i heard he was in australia.
          
          cheers!
          
          ranjit rauniyar
          london school of economics
          r.rauniyar@lse.ac.uk

********************************************************* Date: Mon, 2 Jun 1997 13:45:14 -0400 To: The Nepal Digest <NEPAL@cs.niu.edu> From: kiran@hydra.rose.brandeis.edu (Namita Kiran) Subject: a poem

                                Losing You

Your image is blurred; or is it the tears in my eyes? Hands stretche to touch your golden hair
  you are fading- Just a mirage - hallucination drugged out of my mind drunk to the bone do I believe everything I see? should I?

Devilish smile, Murderous charm, and that Chilling love swept off me drained all the good senses-
-stay- don't leave me? What will I do with all this love? - a big boulder!

But, can I make a mirage real? ghost a human? Were you really there? Had you really whispered the melodies into my heart? drunk... drugged out of my mind... can I be sane, ever?

Namita Kiran May 15, 1997

***********************************************************************************************

*********************************************************************************************** Subject: Nepali women work to save the villages To: Nepal Digest <nepal@cs.niu.edu> Date: Tue, 3 Jun 97 16:41:20 PDT From: Paul Johnson <paulj@bbs.cruzio.com>

Topic: Nepal's Development Sees Gender Tug-of-War ** Written 9:17 AM Jun 2, 1997 by mmason in cdp:headlines ** Edited/Distributed by HURINet - The Human Rights Information Network

SOURCE: PACIFIC NEWS SERVICE
        450 Mission Street, Room 204
        San Francisco, CA 94105
        415-243-4364
        http://www.pacificnews.org

HEAD: A GENDER TUG OF WAR -- WHILE MEN MIGRATE TO THE CITY, NEPALESE WOMEN WORK TO SAVE THE VILLAGE

EDITOR'S NOTE: The road to development typically involves dramatic migration from countryside to city. But in Nepal, there is a firm pull in the opposite direction and the pull comes from women determined to keep village life viable. PNS editor Franz Schurmann, a professor emeritus of history and sociology at the University of California, Berkeley, is author of "American Soul" (Mercury Press).

BY FRANZ SCHURMANN, PACIFIC NEWS SERVICE

KATHMANDU -- Nepal's future is being written by a tug of war between men and women. On one end, men are migrating in droves from the countryside to this capital city. They hope to make a lot of money, buy a piece of land, and bring their families. On the other end, women are digging in their heels, refusing to leave the villages.

This tug-of-war is not about development. Ever since democracy made a comeback here in 1991, Nepalis have been talking development -- the English term crops up frequently in Nepali speech, as do phrases like "income generation." For all sectors of the population, the idea of Westernization, citification, has caught hold.

The real struggle is over how to interpret the word in a way that allows the village to survive. And the women of Nepal have the intuitive sense that unless development includes the village, enables the village to draw in the city rather than allowing the city to absorb the village, their children will have no real future in either the city or the countryside.

Nepal, officially classified as poor, is no economic tiger. It lacks the drive of supermodern Hong Kong or Bangkok. (Like the rest of East Asia, Nepalese describe countries like Thailand or South Korea not as tigers -- which they regard as shy creatures -- but as dragons or serpents. Nepalese worship serpents as divine creatures, but they would never consider becoming one.)

Still, this city's population has grown in the last 30 years from 200,000 to 2.2 million, and the number goes up every day. Never mind that water is so short people have to fetch it from distant taps -- what counts for the newcomers is a stake in the city's land.

For the urban migrants and their children, love of village life remains -- in their clustered settlements, they draw the village in around them. But villages are where you go when you're old and there's nothing left to earn and learn. They are places where drinking water is still hard to get, where children get sick, even die, from diarrhea, where people have little money and have to carry huge burdens every day up to high mountain areas, where "at night the toilet is anywhere and everywhere."

Who would want to live in places like these? It happens that a lot of people in Nepal do, especially women, and with their determination to save their villages and keep their families intact they are emerging as a strong new counterforce.

And it is the women who want real development -- meaning safe, clean drinking water. They want toilets -- the English word is used -- in their homes. They want all-weather roads connecting their villages with towns and cities so they can do "income generating" (again, an English word). And they want a health post with medicines and a medical person to heal their children.

Women may know that if they, too, abandon the villages, the villages will surely die. For one thing, retired people cannot carry big loads up to high mountain settlements, villages, and only so much can be piled onto the backs of the fewer and fewer young people who remain.

Young women may also want to stay away from the cities because they know that city men may work hard outside the house -- but inside it is the women who must do the household work.

And perhaps the women also sense that the city life cannot last without land that produces food and medicine and crops. So all over the countryside, women's groups meet and discuss problems and, above all, collect money from each other without the suspicion of corruption that often afflicts men of power handling money.

For these women the village has become a public space where they can talk as the men listen. To make sure the men do not laugh them off they keep records in great and precise detail. The men who find it hard to manage cash and too often drink too much are impressed.

Maybe these women are gaining the strength of goddesses -- like Kali, who is widely worshipped here and in India. The result a generation down could be regenerated villages producing crops rather than real estate.

*************************************************************************** Date: Tue, 3 Jun 1997 23:50:25 -0400 (EDT) To: nepal@cs.niu.edu From: Puspa Man Joshi <joshi.2@osu.edu> Subject: Tidbits from Columbus, Ohio

                     Congratulations!

We would like to congratulate Rakesh Kumar Singh on his successful completion of the MBA degree program at Capital University. We wish him the best in the future.

We would also like to congratulate Sarala (Pandey) Singh on her graduation from Capital University with an undergraduate degree in Computer Science. We would like to thank Sarala and Mukesh for the "Shandar" graduation dinner with wonderful entertainment including singing and dancing. We wish Sarala the best in her new career.

Puspa Man Joshi, Arun Laxmi Rummi, Kiran, and Ashish 

************************************************************* Date: Tue, 03 Jun 1997 16:05:22 EDT To: nepal-request@cs.niu.edu From: EllieSk@aol.com Subject: New Email list Nepal adoption

I'd like to announce a new email list--NCHILD, the email list for discussion of all things related to the adoption and support of children from Nepal.

NCHILD is an email list intended to foster discussion of all topics related to the children of Nepal, especially those involving international adoption. Below is just a sampling of the subjects into which we can delve.
 How to adopt from Nepal.
 Once you're home.
 Worldwide resources to support our adopted children.
 Other Nepal internet resources.
 Supporting all the children of Nepal.
 Improving the understanding and management of adoption in Nepal

This last point is of special importance--I hope that NCHILD will become a forum to gather information that could be used to educate the Nepal government about western attitudes toward adoption and the success of their
(your) children in our homes. This, in turn, might help motivate adoption reform, both in the area of qualifications and process. There are many children and adoptive parents-in-waiting to whom this would mean the world.

We are interested in the participation and support of any and all who have an interest in the children of Nepal. Although the original focus of the list is adoption (and this includes domestic adoption by Nepalis of Nepali children), we are also interested in all aspects of child welfare in Nepal.

Please feel free to join us by sending an email to join-nchild@s1.net. It doesn't matter what you put in the subject line or body of the message. It will take awhile for discussion to get going, so I hope that all you opinionated ex-pat Nepalis all over the world will help get us started by giving us your opinions on international adoption.

Also, if you know of any families who are interested in adopting from Nepal or have already done so, please let them know about the list. There are hundreds of us out there, but we need to get the word out.

Thanks, and I look forward to hearing from you. Ellie Skeele elliesk@aol.com nchild-owner@s1.net

************************************************************* Date: Thu, 29 May 1997 17:31:16 CDT To: tnd@nepal.org From: Jay Shrestha <shrestha@uab.edu> Subject: search command for tnd!!

To the editors of TND, It has been quite some time since I've started reading your subscriptions and noticed that a search command for the names of writters and subject, is not available. My suggestions are that creating such an alternative might help readers to access thier reading material more efficently. However, I might add, reading the subscriptions has always been a part of my interest. Thanking you.....Jay

************************************************************** Date: Wed, 04 Jun 1997 17:11:21 -0400 From: Roger Smith <rsmith@supernova.net> To: tnd@nepal.org Subject: People's Review: MAY 29, 1997: monarchy

Source: People's Review MAY 29, 1997

A Communist doesnt believe in monarchy by PUSHPA RAJ PRADHAN

 After the publication of Padmaratna Tuladhars interview and later,
 his clarification, saying that a Communist never believes in
 monarchy and they are always for the establishment of peoples
 republic, as this is the ultimate goal of the Communists, this
 topic has become the talk of the town.

 The Nepali Congress tried to cash in on this as an important
 election issue by describing UMLs attitude against the
 establishment and highlighting that aspect. Also, those pro-palace
 people too are taking the issue as a serious matter. Those, who
 were anti-Congress and had believed the UML as a nationalist force
 and appreciated present RPP-UML coalition government, have also
 started to criticise UML party as a radical party. They even
 started to express doubt on whether there is any connection between
 NCP (UML) and NCP (Maoist)?

 It is remarkable that until now, neither the party chairman, nor
 party general secretary or any other senior party leaders have
 condemned the view expressed by Tuladhar. Surprisingly, other
 leaders including Tulsilal Amatya are lauding the voice of Tuladhar
 by saying that there is no place for the King in Communism. It is a
 fact that UML has not amended the constitution of the party in
 which it has been stated that their gradual aim is the
 establishment of a peoples republic. UML leaders have always tried
 to twist the issue when media persons ask questions relating to
 this issue. Intellectuals have now started to ask whether UML is
 having double standards? Even member of the Upper House, Rajeswar
 Devkota, has condemned Tuladhars view against the monarchy. To
 recall the past, from the effort of UML, he was elected as a member
 of the Upper House and he was one among the key figures who helped
 in the formation of the present coalition government. Devkota, a
 prominent leader of the RPP and a royalist, has even stated that if
 UML doesnt take any action against Padmaratna and the senior
 political leaders dont clarify about their belief, RPP may not
 support UML. He, even, has said that the present coalition may
 break.

 Also the intellectuals point out that UML is always playing a
 double game. They say that UML has proved itself as an opportunist
 party. The party says anything to achieve its interest. They also
 blame the Palace for always giving blessing to the Communists since
 panchayat days, thus, now, UML has come to a situation where it can
 make a threat to the Palace too. According to them, now the time
 has come to understand who are the supporters of the Palace in
 Nepal. Some intellectuals also suggests why Tuladhar and the
 supporters of his belief dont join Dr. Baburam Bhattarais camp?

 Tuladhar is enjoying each and every facilities of a MP since
 Marichmans (the then panchayati prime minister) time. Now, he is
 enjoying the facilities of vehicle imported on a heavy discount in
 import duty. If he was the person dedicated for the poor people,
 why didnt he discard the facilities provided to an MP? Why he
 didnt dare to oppose the present constitution of which he himself
 was an architect? There are many questions which have been directed
 against him. Enjoying every facilities provided by the government
 and at the same time opposing the constitution is a clear double
 standard, intellectuals say.

 According to them, Tuladhar also took the oath of secrecy in the
 presence of the King when he was appointed as the Health Minister.
 Why didnt he refuse that job at that time? If he was against the
 constitution, why he hasnt become a Maoist activist?

****************************************************************** Date: Fri, 6 Jun 1997 02:03:45 -0400 (EDT) From: Apjoshi@aol.com To: Nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: What you think?

TOP TEN things that are reportedly on the "to do" list of Kathmandu's newest Marxist-Leninist Mayor. (An attempt at humor.)

10. Like every other self-declared democrat in town, erase his own Panchayati past for good.

09. Erect a statue each of Marx, Stalin and Bam Dev in Ratna Park.

08. Start giving all the juiciest construction-contracts to his AVM buddies.
  07. Send a thank-you note to PL Singh for making the UML victory so easily possible.

06. Start planning his tirtha-yatra to North Korea, Cuba and Albania.

05. Let his suave French-cut beard grow into a wisp of a proletarian goatee.

04. Hire hungry-looking, unemployable yet revolutionary UML karya-kartas to staff the municipality.

03. Allow Maobadis to become Momobadis by letting them open tax-free momo-pasals in Kathmandu.

02. Come up with a working-class slogan to replace PL Singh's "swaccha, safa, hara-vara Kathmandu"

01. Sit back, relax and do nothing while getting paid -- just like what PL-cha and his Congressi karya-kartas did during the last five years. THE END.

****************************************************************** Date: Sun, 08 Jun 1997 23:49:23 +0700 From: Krishna Pahari <nrc47818@ait.ac.th> To: The Nepal Digest <NEPAL@cs.niu.edu> Subject: GIS lab at Pokhara

Following is the information about a newly established GIS lab in Pokhara. I hope some of you will find this useful/interesting.

A laboratory for GIS and Remote Sensing has been recently set up at the Department of Geography, Tribhuan Uniersity, Prithvi Narayan Campus, Pokhara. The laboratory consists of 4 pentium PC's (1 with 17" monitor and 3 with 15" monitor) all with UPS and CD-ROM drives, 4 digitising sets (3 units of 12*18 and 1 unit of 18*24 inches), a color printer
(Epson Stylus 1520, A2 inkjet printer), an ordinary laser printer. At the moment, the image processing software WINASEAN, has been installed and an order has already been placed for 4 licenses of ARC/INFO and one license of ERDAS IMAGINE (windows version).

All the funds for setting up the hardware and software have been personally provided by Prof. Shunji Murai, a professor at the university of Tokyo, who is currently at the Space Technology Applications and Research program of the Asian institute of technology. The total amount spent for this project is approimately US$ 18,500.00.

The lab was inaugurated by Dr. Birendra Singh Gurung, the campus chief on 5th June. At the inauguration ceremony, Prof. Murai gave a key note speech on "New advanced technologies on Geoinformatics".

I am very happy to be a part of this process assisting Prof. Murai in purchasing the hardware/software and setting up the lab facilities and serving as a bridge between the campus faculty and Prof. Murai which eventually led to this stage.

To the best of my knowledge, this is the first GIS lab in Nepal outside the Kathmandu valley and plans for the near future include inviting faculty members from the department of geography of the campus for training at AIT, organising a trainining program in Pokhara with the trainees from Nepal and various asian countries with the support from NASDA (Japan) and AIT, and some joint research.

Contact address for this lab is as follows:

Dr. Kedar Basnet, Head, Geography Department, Tribhuvan University, Prithvi Narayan Campus, Pokhara.

Tel: +977-61-21142 (Dr. Gurung, campus chief) Email link is to be established soon.

Best regards, Krishna Pahari Doctoral Student, Space Technology Applications and Research program Asian Institute of Technology Klong Luang, Pathummthani 12120, Thailand http:/www.star.ait.ac.th/~pahari/

*************************************************************** Date: Mon, 09 Jun 1997 08:46:00 EDT To: The Nepal Digest <tnd@nepal.org>, From: Ann Joshi <AJoshi@RUSSREYN.COM> Subject: re: [GAWOMEN] PJ and Sexual harassment

This is in response to a statement written re the sexual harassment cases that have been *rocking* the US re the military. This has been a long-standing problem and I wonder how prevalent it is in other countries?

Sexual misconduct has been a long-standing thing in the military. It's like they have their own set of rules and moral standards; their judicial system is even slightly different from civilian! Also, the military has long had a bad reputation for sloppy medical and dental work. I was in the Army and the Calif. Nat'l, Guard for awhile and saw horrible things going on in terms of SH, harassment from JAG( the military's judicial branch), and the medical people. Men molesting men; men molesting women; women molesting women(when I write *molesting* I'm also including SH); officers and NCO's fraternizing; NCO's and trainees fraternizing. . . .on and on and on. Now, everything is coming to light so that those in high positions in the military must now *pay the piper* and throw a few lambs to the wolves!

We should not become complacent,, however, in thinking life for us women will improve as far as the workplace is concerned. These allegations and admissions are only the *tip of the iceberg*. I suspect much of this is merely political manouvering, and once the public is fairly satisfied, this kind of behaviour will again go underground and remain active in therein until the next sacrifical offerings will be required to appease the Public Wolf.

It's always interesting how the loudest condemners are often the very ones GUILTY of the very thing they are ranting and raving against. Not only Mike Bowers but Jimmy Swaggart with his railings agains sexual
*perversion* and being caught with prostitiutes; and Ted Kennedy sitting so piously on the committee to hear Anita Hill and pass judgment on her!

I still hope Paula Jones wins her case!

Aiko (Anne) Joshi GSU Women's Studies

I think it's really interesting that we are at the threshold of major change regarding sexual behavior ,and it's probably very telling that so much of the uproar is in the armed services. What probably is going on is a REAL change in public policy that is just now catching up with previous changes in the way we live and view our lives as ordinary citizens. The army is generally the first to implement real social change, ie., racial integration, because, unlike politics, the army runs on a set of definable and enforceable rules. Obviously, the sexual behavior issue and the arbitrary application of the rules is beginning to be disclosed as a problem for them, and this is a Martha Stewart Good Thing! And now we have Mike Bowers begging the publc for forgiveness for his indiscretions, while he has been imposing his own sanctimonious, self-righteous set of rules of conduct on others for lo these many years. Disclosures of this kind, however unpleasant, are important. No one can be held to ridiculous standards of perfection, but those who sleep, expose themselves, harass, or cuckold in glass houses should not be enforcing rules by which they themselves do not live. That goes for Newtie too!

Linda A. Sheldon The Access Group Center for Rehabilitation Technology Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, GA 30332-0156 phone 404-894-4621 fax 404-894-9320 linda.sheldon@arch.gatech.edu

************************************************************* Date: Mon, 09 Jun 1997 08:46:08 MDT To: tnd@nepal.org From: "Girish C. Ghimire" <ghimire@et.byu.edu> Subject: China graduates of Nepal

Dear editor

Pls post following in your coming edition.

I am trying to gather information about Nepalese who graduated from Chinese Universities and colleges. I am building a home page for china graduates of Nepal. If there is anybody you know of or you are in the net pls e-mail me in the following address.

ghimire@et.byu.edu

home page can be seen in following URL address.

http://www.et.byu.edu/~ghimire/chinagraduates

Thanks Girish

****************************************************************** From: "sudheer birodkar" <sudheer_birodkar@hotmail.com> To: sudheer_birodkar@hotmail.com Subject: Contribution of South Asia (SAARC Region) to Modern Civilization Date: Wed, 11 Jun 1997 22:14:21 PDT

Hello,

I am a student of the History of Science and Technology and have recently completed a book on the theme Science and Technology in South Asia (SAARC Region).

http://members.tripod.com/~sudbee/

Examples of elements of material culture and civilization that originated in South Asia in ancient times and which the world owes to the genius of ancient scientists and inventors include:

 - the technique of algorithm used in computer science today.
 - the science of algebra.
 - the concept of zero - on which ultimately rests the binary code which has given us all software including the WWW through which you are reading this mail!
 - the technique of manufacturing crystal (sugar)cane sugar
(the word sugar is derived from the Sanskrit term "Shakara").
 - the making of camphor (this word is derived from the Sanskrit root word "Karpuram" according to the Oxford Dictionary.
 - the making of tin (the technical English word for tin is Cassiterite which is derived from the Sanskrit term
"Kasthira" according to the Oxford Dictionary).
 - The making of dyes like Anline
(the word Anline is derived from the Arabic term An Nil which is derived from the Sanskrit term Neelam, according to the Oxford dictionary).
 - the Gumbaz that we see on mosques all over the world could have possibly originated as the interlocking dome in the "Stupa" of the Buddhist architectural tradition.

There are many such instances in the virtually all fields. Be it civil engineering, architecture, mechanical engineering, production technology, chemical engineering, physics, medical science, mathematics, logic, astronomy, or be it shipbuilding, navigation, the fine arts, etc. There are evidences that many elements in all these varied aspects of today's global civilization owe their origin to people from South Asia (our ancestors)!!

The arguments marshalled in this book draw from irrefutable
 sources like current western dictionaries, Encyclopedia Britannica, observations of ancient Greek, Roman, Persian, Arab and Chinese travellers. The advances made in ancient times have been noted and praised by these travellers and chroniclers from other parts of the globe.

For more on this subject visit the site: http://members.tripod.com/~sudbee/ Regards
 - Sudheer

************************************************************* Date: Fri, 13 Jun 1997 21:39:56 BST To: tnd@nepal.org From: bipet@xs4all.nl Subject: India published a false News about Buddha!

Dear Nepalese Namaste!

We have been complaining that the Indian News Agencies (INA) had published false news about "Lord Buddha." I heard that INA have claimed that Lumbini was/is part of India so Buddha was born India. Obviouly its FALSE. Lately, however, I found the same thing in a book, called A MESSAGE OF ANCIENT DAYS (page No. 251). This book was published in 1991 by HOUGHTON MIFFLIN COMPANY (222 Berkely Street, Boston, MA 02116). Looking at Nepal's political situation, India has already send FALSE messages to the INTERNATIONAL Publications Levels. And so far no political leaders have cared about it, if this conditions go on, one day, India will definetly claim that NEPAL is part of India. Therefore, something must be done quickly about it!! Even though the political leaders don't care, if we are to save our country and our identity, we
(educated young Nepalese) sould do something about it. WE SHOULD FIGHT AGAINST FALSE STATEMENTS OF INDIAN PEOPLE. WE CAN DO THIS!!

RAJESH GIRI Amsterdam The Netherlands

****************************************************************** Date: Sat, 14 Jun 1997 22:33:50 +0545 (NPT) To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu From: sinhas@mos.com.np (Mary Des Chene) Subject: A Nepali Play in Translation

Below is an essay in introduction to a play, "Mechi-Mahakali Express", by Sharad Paudel, followed by a translation of the play itself. Both are forthcoming in Vol. 2, No. 1 (June 1997) of the journal Studies in Nepali History and Society. The full table of contents of that issue will be on-line soon at http://jhunix.hcf.jhu.edu/~deschene/sinhas/index.html

------- Tramping on the Skin of the People: The Politics of "Compulsion" by Mahesh Maskey and Mary Des Chene

With Lokendra Bahadur Chand as the Prime Minister and Sadbhavana as comrades-in-arms, the United Marxist-Leninist party (UML) has amply demonstrated that in the field of political opportunism it can outdo the Nepali Congress (NC) by a wide margin. How will history judge such shameless horse-trading of political power in which leaders of the Jana Andolan (People's Movement) compete with one another to reinstate the very Panchayat forces against which people shed their blood in the streets? The question looms large as the bumpy road of post-andolan politics in Nepal takes a 'U' turn backwards.

One can easily recall the (in)famous post-andolan declaration of NC leader Girija Prasad Koirala which laid to rest the spirit of co-operation between Nepali Congress and the United Left Front for the forthcoming general election and thereafter. He said it loud and clear: "Male, Mandale and Mashale are birds of the same feather". By saying this he tried to position the NC as the only political force representative of the Nepali people. Ironically it was Nepali Congress that first grew "Mandale" feathers when many ex-Panchas made entry in Nepali Congress, including the likes of Parashu Narayan Choudhary and Arjun Narsingh KC. These feathers were spread for all to see when Girija attempted to oust K. P. Bhattarai as a political competitor by joining hands under cover with the Rastriya Prajatantra Party
(RPP) of the erstwhile Panches in the Baneshwar election a couple of years ago. Later his party took the lead to form a cabinet with RPP stalwarts. Even as late as February of this year, as the leader of the party and parliamentary body of NC after Sher Bahadur Deuba had stepped down, G.P. Koirala desperately sought a continued coalition with RPP. So much for Girija babu and his party's hypocrisy, claiming that it, and it alone, was not singing to the tune of 'mandale'.

However, with another ironical turn of the wheel of history, UML has done its best to save Girijababu's dignity from the utterance he made 6 years ago. What is more, it has sunk much lower than Nepali Congress in the quest for power by reinstating to premiership the same person responsible for the Chaitra 24 massacre as the last Prime Minister of the Panchayat era. The possibility was in the air for a long time and many people will have been unsurprised at this outcome. Yet for many well-wishers of UML, the cold reality must still have come as a shock. Now that the RPP-UML marriage has been confirmed beyond any shred of doubt, UML's 'innovative application of Marxism in Nepali soil'-"Bahudaliya Janavad"-has also reached the point from which all roads to power only lead to the degeneration of political morality and alienation from the people. The same people, it should be remembered, "tramping on whose skin" as Sharad Poudel puts it, they had achieved their political position.

The "India factor" was strongly incriminated in the media during the latest change of government. In Nepal's power games, India has always been implicated, either directly or by virtue of its hidden manoeuvers. But what makes the political forces susceptible and amenable to the manoeuvers of India? Sometimes the answers to such political questions are best expressed by literary works. Sharad Paudel's "Mechi Mahakali Express" gives us insights into such power plays. Rather than the usual move of raising the
"India factor" simply to place blame outside the country (and onto some party other than one's own), Poudel looks at the Nepali side of the "India factor", and rightly spares none of the major players in doing so. This popular street play was performed by Indreni Sanskritik Samaj (ISAAS)* in Basantapur, Asantol, Bhaktapur and other places around the Kathmandu Valley during the time when the Vote of Non-Confidence natak (in 2 acts) was being performed in Singha Darbar. ISAAS also staged the complete play at the Royal Nepal Academy not long before the fall of the NC/RPP government.

Sharad Paudel is an inspiring example in these troubled times, when talk is too often only about what can't be or isn't being done. While most bikas efforts either unthinkingly or intentionally institute neo-liberal economic policies and infantalize the janata with their assumptions of backwardness and ignorance, Paudel's Sustainable Living Forum has, for the past 10 years, quietly engaged in projects that give real meaning to ubiquitous bikas slogans like "participatory community development", "jana chetana" and "empowerment" (though these are terms he is more likely to critique than to use). At the same time, Paudel is a prolific writer. As editor and contributor to SLF's journal "Bikas", and in other publications, he has made available some of the most grounded and critically-informed discussions of development practices in Nepal. But he is probably best known in the field of progressive literature, where he has contributed many songs and plays that expose the hypocrisies of politics, and bring to life the contradictions and clashes of poverty and wealth, cultural "tradition" and "modernization" (see for example, another recent street play, "Gorkha Jackson", Pyar (Sahitya Pradhan) 2(3) (Asoj/Paush 2053). He has also published a longer giti natak, "Buhari" (Kathmandu: Atma Nirbhar Bikas Manch, 2053) and a collection of songs, "Sachetataka Nimti Githaru"
(Kathmandu: Atma Nirbhar Bikas Manch, 2053).**

With "Male" (UML) aligned with "Mandale", the only remaining political force that G.P. Koirala saw fit to mention back at the end of the andolan, is "Mashal". This force is at present divided into 3 currents. "Maobadi", with their reliance on armed struggle, constitute the extreme left current while "Ekata Kendra" and "Masal", by relying on popular movements and mass struggle, seem to be trying to avoid the ultra-left tendencies. A street demonstration a few months back on the issue of Mechi-Mahakali by the united popular front of these latter two organizations, "Rastriya Janatantrik Morcha", was described by many observers as one of the biggest since the 1990 Jana Andolan. People who understand the bankruptcy of the theory of collaboration with Panchayat forces in affecting promised social changes in Nepal may turn to this third force - for two different reasons.- some for hope and some for a chance to witness the final realization of G.P.'s dictum that "Male, Mandale and Mashale are birds of the same feather". The fact that Mashal represent the most organized remaining political alternative need not be emphasized. What is not clear is the guarantee that these forces won't tread the same path as NC and UML. Perhaps there is no such guarantee in politics. One can only hope that they will be careful not to fall pray to the same pitfalls of political opportunism which Sharad Paudel portrays with such force and clarity in
"Mechi Mahakali Express".
________________________
*Indreni Sanskritik Samaj is politically close to "Ekata Kendra". For some introduction to this cultural organization's activities and history see Mahesh Maskey's, "4 Hazar Indreni Toliharu", Jana Ekata, 5 May, 1997, Pratyoush Onta's "Invoking Revolution on Stage", Kathmandu Post, 2 Feb. 1997, Mary Des Chene's, "Pragya Bhawanmaa ISAAS Herepachhi...", Jana Ekata, 27 Jan. 1997, and "'Kalapani hamrai ho - Mechi hamrai Ho'. ISAAS ko Desbhaktipurna Sarthak Sanskritik Saajh", Jana Ekata, 20 Jan. 1997. Some of ISAAS's songs will also soon be available to listen to via the internet. A notice will be posted in TND.

** For a more extensive introduction to Sharad Paudel's artistic endeavours, see the Introduction in "Buhari" by Khagendra Sangraula and the Introduction in "Sachetataka Nimti Githaru" by Ninu Chapagain.
____________________ Notes on Translation:

Slang expressions, and especially the interweaving of Hindi and Nepali, are used to great effect in "Mechi Mahakali Express". We've done our best to translate slang expressions into ones that have a comparable feel and tone in (American) English, while still retaining the original imagery. Conveying the work done (humour, political commentary and commentary on politics) by the admixture of Hindi and Nepali presents greater difficulties as it is necessarily flattened by translation into a single language. We have noted in parentheses any word, phrase or sentence that was originally in Hindi - most often words of the "Bharatiya Sarkar"
(Indian government) character and his sidekick, but sometimes those of the Nepali politicians too - and attention should be paid to which politicians, at which moments, are given lines in Hindi. Likewise, when the "Bharatiya Sarkar" occasionally deigns to speak in Nepali, readers should note to whom he accords this privilege. The translation cannot do justice to the biting humour of the original.

Below are a few explanations to aid readers less familiar with Nepal with some of the references, especially political ones, embedded in the play:

Darchula: Refers to an area of NW Nepal near the Tibetan border where the Indian army has been stationed since 1962. Whether India recognizes this area as Nepali territory remains to be clarified.

Dettol- a common antiseptic solution.

Kurta and Dhoti: A Congress leader appears in a kurta, and UML leaders in dhotis. Both are stereotypically Indian clothing and serve to mark their subservience to India.

Lendup - The chief minister of Sikkim who engineered merging of Sikkim into India. Used in Nepal by leftists as a symbol of a traitor, and especially when Nepali interests are being sold out to India.

Mahakali: Refers to the Mahakali hydropower agreement, just ratified by the Nepal and Indian governments. It has been a subject of great controversy and is considered by opponents to be the latest example of Nepali governments failing to protect Nepali interests when making deals with India.

Mechi: Refers to border encroachment and unilateral redefinition of part of the Nepal-India border by India.

RPP: The panches, who strove for the implementation of a autocratic political system, opposing and outlawing party politics during the 30 years of their rule, have formed the National Democratic Party (RPP) in order to participate in multiparty politics. RPP has a small representation in the parliament, but has played king-maker in two coalitions, first with the Nepali Congress and currently with UML. Mechi-Mahakali Express was written while the NC-RPP coalition was in power.

Sadbhavana: A Tarai-based political party generally pro-India in its policies. Though it has very small representation in parliament, the opportunistic power sharing of coalition governments has made it powerful at certain moments.

Sun: symbol of the United Marxist-Leninist party (UML).

*********************

MECHI MAHAKALI EXPRESS A one-act play by Sharad Paudel Originally published in Bedana 57: 33-35 (Saun-Paush 2053) Translation by Mary Des Chene and Mahesh Maskey

Scene: On the street, 3 or 4 people in Nepali dress are processing in a circle and shouting. They are beating a drum and shouting steadily)

Nepalis: Looted! our country is looted! Mahakali gone! Mechi also gone! Oh..., are you all listening? Looted, the dacoits looted the country! Indian dacoits looted our soil!

(They beat the drum). (A moment later:)

Entered! Again a leopard entered our house! Clawed, it clawed us!

(They make a round beating the drum steadily. After a moment a couple of Nepalis enter into the circle and ask of those who are circling:).

Nepali 2: What's happened? What's happened? Why are you shouting?

Nepali 1: What hasn't happened? Your mother, our mother has been raped! Mother's honour is robbed. Vultures ravaged our mother like they ravage a carcass.

(He shouts:)

Ravaged in Mechi, ravaged in Susta, Mahakali ravaged, ravaged in Darchula.

(Another, becoming agitated:)

I spit on you, thieving son of a bitch! Plunderer! And you still call yourself 'neighbour'.

(Others join in shouting:)

Yes! Yes! That one tried to swallow our mother.

Nepali 2: If that's so ... If that's so then we should slug him, that bastard. We should knock him to the ground the way we knock the bullfrogs down. If we people and the government get together....

Nepali 1: (dismissing him with a wave of the hand:) The government does these things too. They sit around with oil-filled ears, everyone of them. They too are all assassins. People-murdering imbeciles!

(Again moving inside the circle:)

Ate, ate our soil, and with it the sinners ate our burial grounds, ate our temples, ate our blood and sweat.

(Everybody becomes excited and shouts in unison:)

- Down with!

(*One begins to lead the shouts while the others circle, crying out:)

Down with soil robbers, down with country ravagers!

(The sound of a policeman's whistle can be heard in the distance. Gasping and twirling his nightstick he also enters into the circle and shouts:)

Police: Hey! What kind of sloganeering is this? Shut up. Silence! Bastards, what kind of unrest is this? Are you guys some kind of extremists or what?

Nepali:(becoming angry:) Hey, brother officer! Who are you calling extremists? Don't you know our soil is gone, ravaged by looters. In the broad daylight they buried their claws in mother's chest.

Police: Huh, what's he saying? Whose mother are you talking about, eh boy!

Nepali: Your mother, my mother, it's Mother Nepal I'm talking about.

Police: (Starting, as if he'd just remembered something) Hey...Shut up. The Honourable Minister's motorcade is on its way here right now. Shut up.

(A commotion can be heard outside the circle)

"The Honourable Minister has come" The Honourable Minister's motorcade has arrived" " Clear the road" "Clear the road".

(Amidst the commotion the minister enters the circle). The Minister bears the signs of the Nepali Congress. On his kurta the signs of 'tree',
'plough' and 'palm' are imprinted. After the Minister enters into the circle his eyes scan cautiously all around. (They look.)

Minister: What's happened? What's happened to these people? Why such a great commotion?

Nepali: Why wouldn't there be a commotion, Minister, sir? Why do you talk double-talk? You don't know the country has been looted? You don't know people's shelters have been lifted?

Police: Shut up! Is that the way to talk to a Minister?

Minister: Understood, understood. You're communists. You've opposed us. Look here, as I've said, this is politics. Here not an inch of soil has been shifted this way or that. We also know.

Nepali: Oh...Minister! Want me to show you what has happened to our soil?

(Abruptly gets up and heads out of the circle. Minister becomes a bit nervous. A moment later Nepali enters with a wild-haired dishevelled woman and, standing her before the minister:)

Okay then, ask: What has happened to our soil. If you have the courage, ask.

(The Minister is nervous, but slowly asks:)

Minister: Who are you? What's happened?

Woman: I... am Mother Nepal. Minister... I've been robbed. A neighbour ravaged me. Ravaged in Mechi. Ravaged in Mahakali, Susta and Darchula.With his own poisonous nails he clawed at me. You're a minister and you don't know that I, Mother Nepal, am ravaged? Fie on you, your party, your government.

Minister: (making a show of sadness, wiping away tears) Mother there's been a mistake from my side. Made a mistake.

(looking towards his lackeys)

Hey, you've got Dettol, don't you? Well, give Mother here some Dettol then.

(going close to Mother:)

Mother, simply apply Dettol. If there's a wound, it will be healed. Okay then, we're off.

(Minister's party departs. Nepalis are astounded. They rise up as one and shout in unison).

Nepali 1: Oh, what a traitor! Shove your Dettol. Mother's honour has been robbed. Mother's shelter has been lifted. Blood and sweat have been snatched away. And you hand out Dettol?

(All shout again:)

Down with - Down with the three-legged Minister. Down with the country-seller. Down with the progeny of Lendup.

(As these slogans are shouted two neatly clad men enter into the circle. On their dhotis a 'sun' symbol is imprinted.)

Neatly Clad: What's happened? What's happened Comrades? Why such an uproar?

Nepali: What else could it be? You mean you still don't know? Neighbours have encroached and pounded us. India has squeezed us. Swallowed - swallowed our soil in broad daylight.

Neatly Clad 1: Uh! The bastards, those who'd eat our land must be beaten. We're with you. Comrade, life may be lost but the country must be protected.

(He makes a fist)

Neatly Clad 2: Look here friends, sure it must be said our Comrade
(pointing towards his friend) spoke with great feeling and sentiment. But the thing is not that simple.We don't have proof that our land has been encroached.

Nepali: Oophh, double-talker, weasel. What's the deal, talking like that? You haven't seen right here (showing mother) - who is she, can you recognize her? You did politics tramping on her skin. Today, after becoming a leader, such betrayal. Mother-betrayer. Nation-betrayer!

Neatly Clad 2: No no Comrades, you people haven't gotten the point. We would never support betrayal of the nation. But to find out whether India has or hasn't squeezed and ravaged us we are forming a committee, (trying to remember) - what was it? what's it called again? - an Investigation Committee. It will give a report and then we.....

Nepali1: Who needs your report. Seeing mother being raped before your very eyes again and again, what's this masquerade of forming a committee.

(all shout)

Down with opportunism. Down with committees for show!

(In the unrest, the two neatly clad ones flee. After reciting the slogans for a little while, the Nepalis go to Mother's side:)

Mother! Each and every one of them are turning into agents. But don't you worry, we're here. We Nepalis are here. We'll do battle so long as a drop of our life-blood remains. We'll do battle with the encroacher. We'll do battle with their agents too. We'll save you. We won't make a Sikkim. No, we'll do battle, do battle mother.

(All stand up at once and together shout the slogan)

Long live - Nationalism! Mechi Mahakali - are ours! Down with - agents!

(All disappear within the circle. After a moment an Indian arrives in the circle bearing a placard that says "Delhi Darbar". Following him there's another Indian too. He's the Indian leader. Immediately upon arrival he sits on a chair placed inside the circle and whispers in the ear of the man carrying the placard. Then he [the placard-carrier] shouts:)

Indian 1: (speaks in Hindi) Sadbhavana be present!

(The Sadbhavana leader comes inside the circle and sits with folded hands)

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) What's going on? Citizens of your country have started making a big commotion.

Sadbhavana: (speaks in Hindi) No, no sir, it's just the voices of one or two people and we have kept all the others in the dark.

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) But the voices are very loud.

Sadbhavana: (mixing Hindi and Nepali) Shall I suppress it sir - their voice?

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) No, no, not now.

( after a pause)

How are your feelings? this...Mechi Mahakali.

Sadbhavana: (speaks in Hindi) Mine! I don't have any objections, whatever you wish. (continues in mixed Hindi and Nepali) If need be, I can even fix Nepal for you, you see.

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) Excellent, Excellent! Slave, what a magnificent servant you are.

Sadbhavana: (speaks in Hindi) Shall I massage your feet sir?

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) Yes yes Lendup, do it.

Indian 1: (speaks in Hindi) RPP be present!

(The RPP leader comes within the circle)

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) What's up RPP? You used to call yourself patriots didn't you?

RPP: (speaks in Hindi) No no sir. That's a long long time ago. (continues in Nepali) You speak of such distant bygone days, sir.

Indian 2:(speaks in Hindi) That minister though, that foreign minister
(continues in Nepali) he's of your party, no?

RPP: (speaks in Nepali) Yes sir, we are arranging everything according to your hints, sir. We're saying whatever has happened till today is in Nepal's best interest. But sir, perhaps you need to give some protection to our share of power?

Indian 2: (speaking in Hindi) Oh, why do you worry brother? While we exist no shadow will be cast upon your power.

RPP: Shall I massage your feet sir?

Indian 2: Yes yes!
(RPP starts massaging the feet of the Indian)

Indian 1: (speaks in Hindi) Nepali Congress be present!

(Congress leader comes inside the circle)

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) What's up friend. You're our old friend.
(continues in Nepali, mixing in a few words of Hindi) The pleasure of old friends is different isn't it. How are things? Oh, and that Mahakali Mechi, what are your people saying?

Congress: (speaks in Nepali) The people are asleep. There are one or two in opposition. Those ones...are communists.

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) Ah... Does the UML also oppose?

Congress: (speaks in Nepali) UML is neither here nor there. Sir you must instruct the UML. Nothing is certain with them. They do nothing but talk of going into the government. 'My power too....'

Indian: (speaks in Hindi) Don't worry. Don't worry. Nobody can shake your rule so long as I exist.

Congress: (speaks in Hindi) Truly, you are with us aren't you? Shall I also massage your feet?

Indian : (speaks in Hindi) Yes yes, do it.

(making a sign to the other Indian)

Oh.....hey now, that chain, where is it?

(the other Indian, taking the chain from a bag, gives it to him. Addressing the three foot-massagers:)

This chain, each of you three fasten it around your own neck, lock it and hand the key over to me.

(Sadbhavana and Congress do just as the Indian has said)

RPP: (speaks in Hindi) But why, I don't understand?

Indian: (speaks in Hindi) Is your rule precious to you or not? If you want my blessing to survive in power then whatever I say, do it.

(Saying [in Hindi] 'Okay, then', RPP also fastens the chain around his neck, locks it, and gives the key to the Indian.)

Indian1: (speaks in Hindi) UML be present!

(The UML leader comes inside the circle. Seeing everyone with a chain fastened around their necks, and the chain in the hand of the Indian, he asks:)

UML: (speaks in Nepali) What this? What's this that's going on?

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi) You'll understand, you'll understand. Later you'll understand. What's up these days? (continues in Nepali). How is it now, Mechi, Mahakali?

UML: (speaks in Nepali) How could it be? It seems that you've done a little too much. It should have been done slowly, slowly!

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi-accented Nepali) So, you're still patriotic are you? Still anti-Indian...

UML: (speaks in Nepali) No, it's not like that - but still. Our own party's friends are opposing.

Indian 2: (speaks in Hindi-accented Nepali) You don't want to move into power? Where is it, that key to power? Have you forgotten?

UML: (speaks in Nepali) Of course I haven't forgotten. It's just become a little awkward.

Indian: (speaks in Hindi-accented Nepali) So, what to do now. Go then - oppose. (acts as if angry)

UML: (speaks in Nepali) No, are you angry or what? I haven't said 'oppose Mechi-Mahakali', not at all.

Indian: (speaks in Hindi-accented Nepali) Oh, is that the state of things? So what about Government?

UML: (speaks in Nepali) Whatever the means, it must be arranged, so many days have passed since we fell from power. Always feeding them, it's not fair you know, sir. Our turn....

Indian: (speaks in Hindi-accented Nepali) So you need power? I have the ladder, want to climb?

UML: (speaks in Nepali) (becoming happy) Yes please sir

Indian: (pulling a chain from his pocket) (speaks in Hindi-accented Nepali) Kid, take this ladder and wear it - around your neck.

UML: (speaks in Nepali) Oh no. I won't tie this on. What gives, acting like this?

Indian: (speaks in Nepali) Are you unhappy, or what is it? This ladder, it's the ladder to power. The thing is this UML, when you come into power then this is the means to control you. It's nothing. Here now, put it on - quickly.

UML: (speaks in Nepali) Oh no. I won't wear it. I'm ready to do anything else. I would rather massage your feet.

Indian: (speaks in Hindi-accented Nepali) No no no. It's not a matter of feet. Really it's nothing at all.

(points out the others)

There, look now. Your friends are quietly wearing the chain, it's no issue at all. So, if you want to sit in the opposition forever....

UML: (considering for a moment) (speaks in Nepali) If it must be worn, I'll wear it, but don't pull it really tight, okay?

Indian: (speaks in Hindi-accented Nepali) Oh no. No question of tightening it You'll tie it on yourself, lock it up and give the key to me.

(UML does just as the Indian has said)

(Holding the ends of the chain in his hand, the Indian rises and asks:)
(speaks in mixed Hindi and Nepali)

So, there's no inconvenience is there?

All: (speak in Nepali) No none, none sir, we're just fine.

(Holding the chain the Indian walks out of there. Right then, the Nepalis arrive on the spot and shout slogans)

Long live - nationalism, Down with - treason!

Nepalis: (Signalling to the audience:) Did you see who runs them? They're crocodiles. They're agents. Down with agents!

(all shout:)

Long live nationalism. Long live nationalism. Long live nationalism!

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