The Nepal Digest - September 23, 1995 (9 Ashwin 2052 BkSm)

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The Nepal Digest Saturday 22 September 95: Ashwin 9 2052 BS Volume 42 Issue 11

   TND Editorial Board wishes "Happy Bijaya Dashami" to entire TND family.

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 * +++++ Food For Thought +++++ *
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 * "If you don't stand up for something, you will fall for anything" -Dr. MLK *
 * "Democracy perishes among the silent crowd" - Sirdar Khalifa *
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********************************************************************** Date: Mon, 18 Sep 1995 20:04:46 -0500 (EST) From: ATULADHAR@vax.clarku.edu Subject: To: nepal@cs.niu.edu

                The Greening of the Himalayas ?
        Exploring Global Vegetation Index 1982-90

                        ABSTRACT

                       Amulya Ratna Tuladhar
        Graduate School of Geography, Clark University
                EMAIL: ATuladhar@vax.clarku.edu

        Deforestation reports conjure an imaginary of denuded Himalayas. Recent documentations of localized landscape recovery with trees suggest a regional scale of Himalayan greening. Is this hypothesis supported by time series data of weekly Global Vegetation Index (GVI)? In this paper, I note an increasing trend in GVI over 1982-90. This trend remains robust even when distortions due to inter-satellite Advanced Very High Resolution Radiomenter
(AVHRR) sensors have been removed by limiting observations to NOAA-9 satellite sensors, for July 1985 to October 1988. Further, the GVI-increase trend is strongest for the remote northwest Himalayan Middle Mountains while none of the other, more-accessible subregions of the Himalayas register a negative trend. While principal components analyis with ground-based georeferencing with GPS systems may help disaggregate and verify the sources of variations affecting GVI, my preliminary explorations do not allow me to reject the contention that the Himalayas may be greening at a regional scale.

Keywords: Himalayan Environment, Remote Sensing, Global Vegetation Index

*********************************************** Date: Mon, 18 Sep 1995 20:47:23 -0500 (EST) From: ATULADHAR@vax.clarku.edu Subject: Discuss on nepalese subjectivity: mahesh and amulya

On Mon, 31 Jul 1995 ATULADHAR@vax.clarku.edu wrote:
> Yest, Prof. Fredric Jameson is a professor here at Duke and a heavy
> weight all over the world, wherever intellectuals talk about the modern
> and postmodern conditions, various ideologies, and the relationship
> between the EAst and the West. He also happens to be one of my advisors
> and mentors. He has gone to Kathmandu and given a few talks there and
> donated some books on cutural theory to the UML party.

> Mahesh ji,
>
> Namaskar, sometime ago you were sharing with me your opinion that Marxist
> leaders and intellectuals in Nepal were maybe unware of theoretical
> developments inMarxist thought, in reference to Pramod Parajuli trying to use
> Gramsci's notion of Hegemony to explain cultural politics of Nepal.
>
> A friend of mine send me this info and I thought you might be interested. This
> shows that there is at least some link between UML party and the latest in
> Marxist theory.
>
> Professor Jameson is considered one of the strongest American Marxist
> theoretician who is currently grappling withe the philosophical and political
> challenges of postmodernism . His contention is that postmodernism is but
> antoher form of capitalism, called late capitalism, in which cultural politics
> are brought to bear on duping the individuals of the world with various
> normalizing technologhies that obviate the necessity of using and maintaining
> expensive coercive technologies thus reducing the cost of the maintainance of
> capitalism and increasing the rate of profit extraction. Compelling logic
> really.
>
> you must busy with studies, i was hoping you would continute our debate but i
> guess you were either offended, too busy or unimpressed with my last argument
> to continue debating. That is fine we can pick up other threads in the future
>
> amulya

Yes I am little busy in travel and other necessary arrangement for my family to come to USA. I am expecting them to be here on third week of August. But I did have managed to write in response to your posting. It is almost complete. I was waiting for your comments to be published in the TND. Since I did not see them even on the latest TND, it is possible that the article is lost on the way. I am sending that piece to you again so that you may post it to TND. As soon as it is published in TND I shall send my response. This time I have tried to match your passion in debate with the use of some strong language. I hope you will enjoy.

mahesh

Maheshji:

I am trying to respond to your arguments below:
--------------

         SOME EXAMPLES OF NEPALESE PARTICULARITY IN THE FIELD OF RELIGION

Comments and responses from Pryatoush and Amulya has added further clarity to the issues raised by Amulya's "development and social polemics". While highlighting the importance of understanding historical roots of problem, and contributing their knowledge and views to this effort,they have also cautioned about the quest of readymade solutions and hasty conclusions. However, the discussions have been mainly centered around recent period when statization of hinduism and castism was well established in Nepalese society. This period, I am afraid, do not have much to offer
--------------- The contention mentioned above is an opinion, a belief, which passes muster in lay conversations but invites productive analyis from a variety of perspecttives, beginning with what constitutes a period, what are the assumptions underlying the deployment of this vocabulary, I am sure P. Onta, our historian friend can shed useful light, but i will begin my neophytic stab.

"Period" preceding "offer" assumes a committment to the linear theory of history, progressivims, that is aligned theoretically, philosophically, and implicityly, ideologically, to evolutionism and their negative counterpart social darwinism. We cannot automatically accept the logic that what precedes effects the what follows in a causal chain of explanations.

It might be as some historians like to argue that causal community of explanations are all bounded withing a period, like we said medieval period, or as the post-modernist theorists would like to argue that we are now in a post modern period, implying that the constellations of causes, ontology, referents, or even historical matieriality has nothing to do with explaiining what is happening in the current world. Of coursee there is controversy about bounding "periods" but the point i want to make is certain periods are characterized with their particularity of historical matieriality, ecological relationships, economic relationships, and cultural and political factors that these factors and process do not overextend, and if they do only very tenously into current periods.

My argument is that has \mahess considered the possibility of a historical rupture in causal link when he harks back to the the ancient and even antediluvain periods of Nepal's history as pertinent to explain current categories.

Another heuristic motif used by those who often hark back to Mahabharat era of nepal or even anthropologists looking for ancient cultures, untarnished my modernity: is that our spatial or geographical remoteness has preserved historical remoteness in time free3ze.

This is the old "Shangri-la" discourse enslaving scholarly imagination: Ah Nepal the land of lost kingdoms, where people smile and do not war and are in perfect harmony with nature and culture, and live for hundred of years. A powerful image that colors the judgement and supposedly "critical' thinking of scholars who end up building this "exoticity" under guise of using realist epistemology, aan approach that assumes a real object that scholarly scientific research will help us access.

Getting back of subject at hand, why take this period at all? I have seen Stacy Pigg attemp the total explanation of modern Nepali subject by trying to articulate development ideology with modern political economy. For her, the nepalese community is a discursive tabula rosa, a blank slate in which whe can chalk up the workings of development ideologies emanating from the logics and imperatives of the post World War II West. I find her project very useful in explaining those Nepalese in the most immersed state of modernity: city kids totally exposed to western educations, governed by modern institutions of law, rationality, music, science and technolgoy and who has had little contact with Nepalese history throught their parents or society or community. I find her explanations skitting on thin ice when it involves "non-modern" societies in Jumla/

We have other Nepali scholars who concentrate only an ancient Nepali tribes, an anthropoligists, belong to this tribe,whose project is basically to idealize ancient ways of doing things and dor bahadur on see more merit in attributes of ancient cultures that even Hindu and Buddhist cultures are foreign influences on Nepali tribes.

Mahesh's allusion to esoteric hindu texts in this argument and to Nagarjun's eastern existentialism hints he is talking of mostly brahminized hindu Nepali who are educated in that culture, a dominant community certainly, but definitely not one privileged to speak and represent all Nepal.

Hindu semiotics get reproduced by hindu explanations of contemporary materiality people see around them. Dor Bahadur Bista shows how there is a hindu explanations for every thing nepalisees, yes so if you are screwed up and poor, it is due to your "poorab janam ko paap"; if bahuns have high political influence, it is because of their "poorab janam ko dharma."

The problem nowadays in this discursive battle, nay war, is that there is a Western/modern explanations for what happens around them. If some one is rich and successfulm it is due to education, merit, the liberal humanist myth. It just so happens that innepal, the historical conjunctions is that those who were privileged by Hindu culture, the well off bahuns-cheetris in the villages
(the case of newars and "madhesis" are different because they are are geographically privileges, the newars being in the capital the center of services and power and the Madhesis being close to India and their educations and cultural influences) are also those who hog the educations, merit, the bureaucracy, the State instituions, an the ability to generate discourse that brings formth ideologies of normality.

One of these myths of normality is of course the regulatory fiction of religous syncretism, the category whose express purpose is to legitimize Hindu philosophy and the religioous and social mores of casteism. There are some apologists for Hindus who try to dissociate the casteisim and persecution of minorities from the great philosophies and texts of Hindu epics, and the Hindu states. It is a construction, a social constructions, not a reality as Mahesh tries to argue.
===================
         about our particularity regarding cultural assimilation and religious synthesis. A look into the society before this period may set the right context for understanding and evaluating adverse effect of latter days of "Hinduization "of state. I believe Socio-historical formation of community of Newars is one such segment of history which provides rich insights into the life of valley people before the ossification of society in mideaval period. I would very much appreciate if people with sociological or cultural anthropological background present their understanding of this period. If such response do not come than I shall attempt to dwell in that subject in my next mail. In this posting I shall try to clarify my understanting of religious synthesis , a term, which Amulya rejects completely. But before that I would like to say a few words about his objection of my use of the term "our" ethnic harmony in the title of my previous posting.

Amulya has forcefully objected my use of word "our" in relation to ethnic harmony. And he has sniffed "power architecture" behind the use of this word. Let me make it clear, my understanding of acculturation and also "religious synthesis"takes place through the process of conflict and cooperation, But I was not thinking of power relation when I was writing those words. I picked up the line from the paragraph which, the readers may have noticed, uses the term for highlighting not only the ethnic harmony but also ethnic problem of Nepalese people as a whole. If Amulya was careful to read the whole paragraph I am sure he would find that I use these pronouns in the same spirit as he use in his response such as this:
" yes we are vulnerable, much more vulnerable than we care to believe".
 ---------- ----------------- And I shall continue to use we and our in the same sense.

But as the difference lies in our understanding of ethnic harmony and religious synthesis in Nepal, the use of "our" to "ethnic harmony" may have led him to speculate about the powerful "our" who may have ethnic harmony" among themselves but for others may be the cause of ethnic oppression. Citing many examples some of which are mainly economic or class conflict , Amulya has tried to argue that my "'Y_our' group is very small, very powerful , but does not represent others in Nepal."

Well, when he puts me figuratively in the few but powerful "Y_our" group
                                                        ##########
--------- By "Your" group, Mahesh ji, I am referring to those who have unproblematically bought into the normalizing legitimacy of Hindu discourse to explain and perpetuate such inequities sometimes even translating them into modern idioms of "progressivism" and sometimes trying to causally divorce the worse of Hinduism, casteism for example, with the 'best of Hinduism": the great philosophies and religious syncretism. So this group can include Newars, bahuns, Madhesis, or even the non-HIndu minorities, or "low-caste" Nepali who try to "reforem" hinduism, by mystifying the ideological connections between its negative and positive aspects as two different entities, i aruge that both are parts of the same being and one cannot accept the "positive' without abetting the reproduction of the "negatives"

===============

I tried to think how do I belong to this group. By birth I am a Newar. He probably doesnot mean Newar are the ones who are powerful and few and responsible for other's oppression. He is certainly not indicating that I am a Bahun or Chhetri or Kirant or a Madhesi. Probably what he means are those privileged few who cut horizontally across these casts and ethnic groups and form a powerful alliance on the basis of common interest. This small but powerful and dominant group may try to maintain their "ethnic harmony" and subdue their "ethnic conflict" within themselves in order to safeguard their interest and, for the same reason, may not hesitate to breed ethnic conflicts in those who are the object of this coalition of interest whether newar or bahun or chhetri or kirant or tamang or madhesi. Political economist and former Finance Minister Devendra Raj Pandey defines this coaliation of ruling minority more explicitely:

" In Nepal, the dominant coalition which consists of big landowners,traders, a small group of political and bureaucratic elite and, now increasingly, the educated elite, who also derive their rental income from their cosmetic value to the political regime, has a vested interest in the maintenance of status quo, so that the coalition remains small and yet dominant." ("The state of political economy" 1989).
==========

Yes, I am familiar with this article and argument of Dr. Pandey and yes i agree with those who commit themselves to a political economic perspective that implies the non-problematic ontology of "class". Yes if you are looking for a "class" inNepal, this is it, but how useful is this category as an explantory varible, i have seen time and again how caste, religious identities supersede this category of "class". Relatively, in the modernist discourese emanating from the west where the individual Homo economicus is the non-reducible decision-making unit, the use of "class" suddenly expands and extends explanation into non-charted social and political territories of community, social conflicts, but the very use of marxist category, a modern cateory of class, is open question because Marxist categories are thin nd undeveloped for what he calls pre-modern societies, the pre-modernity of Nepal is not only extant in remote orthodox villages of Nepal but also in the post modern sachib ko ghar of Baneshwor heights.
==============

If Amulya agrees with Dr. Pandey then he probably is taking a class stand. But a class stand also provides appreciation of strengthening of solidarity across the dominated ethnic groups as a response to class antagonism. This solidarty is one key factor that help nurture the ethnic harmony among dominated masses. Seen in this light , the word "our" of my title may not only be interpreted as the small powerful and dominant group but it can also be interpreted as the coalition of dominated masses who truely represent the potential and sustainance of ethnic harmony. They constitute the force which can, when consciously participate, effectively deal with the problem of ethnic conflict. If I have to make a choice between two kinds of "our", I would rather like to belong to this group.

Now back to the actual topic of this artical. Amulya welcomes the call for historical understanding of variable nature of Nepali subjectivity, but he completely disagrees with my position that Nepal has been a proud example of ethnic harmony and religious synthesis. Describing "synthesis" as domination and appropriation he cites the case of Gurungs as an example. I do not subscribe religious synthesis to such examples. For me the better word for such example would be cultural synthesis (or appropriation). By religious synthesis I was refering to socio- historical formation of religious syncretism and harmony exemplified by worshipping of same deity in different names. Let me present few examples.There
  ###########
-------- Again, the "sameness" is problematic to me, Mahesh assumes that there is real, same, unalterable something, in this case a diety, in which various religious vocations are but cultural and may be even ideological epistemologies.

Examples of Pashupati and phallus worship are given. yes phallus worship taht pashupati is all about, how great the erect penis is by building a myth of its role inpower, knowledge, productivity etc was a fairly common anthropological archetype that mahesh sees in not only Hinduism, Buddhism , Kirati and Lichavi faiths, but modern feminists would argue that it is still extent in the very logic of modernity and capitalism which they call: Phallologocentrism. This
"religious syncretism" is so diffuse as to be useless in proving anything, explaining anything, and certainly not in claiming legitimacy for further displacement and appropriation of other culture, identityu, and politics of Nepali people in contemporary Nepal, which seems to be the implicit argument,
"hey we are so great, you obey us" "bull, I say"
==========

are many in kathmandu valley eg. Kumari, Ganesh, Bhairav, Ajima, Guheshwary etc woshipped by the two distinctly different streams of religious faith often in conflict with each other, the Hindu and Buddhist. But the best known and perhaps with a very few parallel in contemporary world, is that of MATSYENDRANATH. To highlight this Dr. Prayag Raj Sharma quotes Locke in his article "Nepali culture and society: Reflections on some Historical currents":
 
" The most outstanding instance of this spirit of religious syncretism is represented perhaps by the popular god, Matsyendranath. As a vast section of Hindus looks upon Matsyendranath to be Nath ascetic and teacher of Gorakhnath in the Kanphatta order of Saivism, to Buddhist, however, he is the Avalokiteswara Padmapani, the Bodhisattwa, who has an abounding compassion for all creature in the world . This Bodhisttwa in several other forms of his such as that of Amoghapasa, Nilkantha, Padmanarteswara or Halahala, shares the features and attributes of the Hindu god , Siva."
============

I have read the entire phd dissertation of John Locke on Matsendra Nath and i can assure that he does not express religous syncretism in so vigorous a statement as Prayag Raj Sharma.

While Prayag is on line, it must be pointed out that he has taken an ideological stand against attacks on Hinduism by using his supposedly neutral scholary icon of objectivity as a weapon or rhetorics. This is most apparent in the articles he has written in HIMAL on the subject of ethnicity. Ireject Prayag's icon as a neutral figure and posit that his scholary argumenta are but political opinions, subject to rejection.
===========

This religious syncretism is perhaps matched only by the symbol of Lord Pashupatinath. There are many evidences that Lord Shiva, was a pre-Aryan or non-Aryan diety. He was later absorbed in Hindu pantheon. The relics of Indus valley civilization before the coming fo Aryans, like Mohenjo daro and Harappa provide evidences shiva linga worship. One of the seal excavated in Mohenjo daro also has a figure which resembles the image of shiva. Shiva also seems to be the god of non aryan Dravidians. It is quite likely that Shiva was the priciple god of hill warrior tribes like Kirant who ruled the valley before Lichhivis at least for a thousand years. (Dr K. P. Malla thinks Kirant may have ruled as long as two thousand years). According to chronicles of later date these kirant kings also observed Pasupat religion. Worshiping of shiva as "Kirateshwar Mahadev" in our Swasthani Brata Katha should not be forgotten in this context. Aryans,it seems, were more inclined to Vaishnavism and even while absorbing the Shaivism within the Hindu main stream there were some tension and conflict between these two group of believers. In many cases there were even open clash between them. Tulasidas Ramayan tells the story of How Bramha tried to judge who is mightier, Vishnu or Shiva, by making them fight with the identical bows made by the great architect Vishwakarma. One of that bow, that of Shiva ,was carried as "Shiva Dhanush" in the lineage of king Janaka. To win the hand of Sita, the aspirant had to lift and mount arrow on that Dhanush. And we know Ram had broken that old dhanush in that process. Vishnu's Dhanush was carried by warrior sage Parashuram who meets and challenges Ram to mount a an arrow on his dhanus immediatelty after he hears that Shiva Dhanus is broken in Janak's court. When Ram is again successful then only he recognizes the real incarnation of god Vishnu as Ram.

I hope this piece of mythology will provide the right flavour to a passage, which extols unique experiment in the field of religion, from Dr. Jagadish Chandra Regmi's "Religion in Nepal":

"If on the one hand though parallel treatment was meted out to Visnavas and Saivas, on the other hand there was clash over their relative superiority. Though the inscription at the image of Harihara near Pasupati installed by Svamivarta conveys the meaning that Harihara
(Vishnu-Shiva) is indivisible, in actual fact the then society held the feeling that Shiva and Vishnu were two different divinities and that one was cosidered superior to the other. It is to eliminate this kind of feeling that the image of Harihara was consecrated. From the historical point of view this is a unique experiment in the field of religion, the equal of which to be found nowhere."

Surprisingly, Lord Pashupatinath pulls together all these diverse
                                ################################
--------- Yes Pashupati pulls together all these diverse streams thanks to explicit State support of the \hindu king, "Pashupati nath le hami sabalali kalyan garun, invocation of the King in his speeches:" well pashupati has not done much that unless you argue that it could have been much worse.

On the other hand, look at Swoyambhu, a diety which predates both Hindu and Buddhist religions in Kathamandu but have beenappropriated by the Buddhist does not attract all diverse streams. If there was so much religious syncretism we should see this occurring both ways.

In fact, a very productive rapid research technique would be to sample to see the categories of people who frequent Pashupati in major festivals such as Sivaratri and to see how many of them turn up in Buddha Jayanti or Gunla at Swayambhu.

Yes, Mahesh ji, i cannot allow you to wash away political patronage of Hinduism from your religious syncretism category. i doubt if anything would be left. In fact, i wonder, if religious syncretism was strong a real category what was the need for *explicit* state support by declaring it a Hindu state, maybe the Hindu lobby of the world hindu federation saw that their historical privilegs would be rapidly undermined by the onset of modern politics of democracy, and class struggle in Nepal?
============

streams of devotees, not only vishnavs and shaivs but also buddhists, each finding their one idol of worship in him. ( It is a different issue why Buddhist would practice idol worship when Buddha himself was against it!) To quote Dr. Regmi again:

"As Saivism was granted special recognition here in Nepal, it is equally very important to see the people of other religious leanings observing it in their own ways. The fact that the adherents of Vaisnavism should consider Pashupati as one of the four principal piligrimage sites worshipping Harihara, that the Buddhists should regard Pasupati as Lokeswara or Nagalokesvara, the other noted eight Sivalingas should be treated in the form of Astabaitaragas and that ceremonial religious activities should be conducted in the Pashupati on the auspicious day of "Mukhastami" corroborate the above view."

Corresponding to a time when in India Hinduism, with the state patronage of Gupta dynasty, was bringing a surge of Bramhinical response to Buddhist influence, when Hindu themselves were deeply divided in the conflicting sect of Shaivs and Vaishnavs and later, when Huns and Moslem raiders were destryoing the great centres of Buddhist learnings , causing an exodus of Buddhist monks and scripts to other countries including Nepal, is not it remarkable that a process of cooperation was taking upper hand in Nepal?
========================================== Hardly, there was a lag effect of ossified Hindu state to take effect in Nepal,
=============
 

The examples Amulya cites of Buddhist facing pesecution and Lumbini neglected etc.may be more closer to religious conflict. But by these examples one can see Amulya's preoccupation in that period of history where the Cast system and Hinduisation were firmly establishing itself as state protected ideology. ( Arrival of Sankaracharya of Kashi and Prayag in Nepal, reviving conflict and hostility towards Buddhism in 13th century A.D. can be regarded as one such examples of Nepali society in the verge of Hindu domination). He mentions only Ranas, and of course, the most overt and pervasive document of state protection is the 'Muluki Ain' promulgated by Rana prime minister Janga Bahadur Rana (1854 A.D.). But the process had aready begun in the later half of mideaveal Nepal (king Jayasthitiraj Malla of kathmandu valley in 1382-1395 A.D. and king Ram Shah of Gorkha in 1606-1636). Whatever immediate gain or resolve in conflict had this statization of cast and hinduism has brought, in retrospect, this was a counterproductive step. May be survival of Feudalism rested on adoption of a particular religion or sect. But we have a period of history in which non sectarian spirit dominated the conduct of state and behaviour
############################################################

--------- Well, this is a null hypothesis, a tautology of the powerful of Shangrila that colors the optics and historiagraphy of Nepal scholars. The choice and critical examination of scanty evidence has been used to build this image just like the mayans were csontructed as philosopher kings in scholarly community before evidence of their bloody violence came to light. Perhaps a historiography committed to finding conflict may show other evidence to challenge this historical construction. I reject this as uncontroversial reality.
===============
                 of people. There was also non partisanship of state to any particular religion. This had greatly favoured the cultural assimilation among different ethnic groups helping to constitute a "Nepali social structure". Though these cultural and religious trends can not belittle the class inequalities, the fact that Nepal's feudal state had once adopted a non partisan attitude to religion is worth pondering. One of the formost authorities in Nepali HistoryDhanavajra Vajracharya, had taken pain to point towards this direction.

"The earlier Lichhivi period seems to have been more active in the development of the common "Nepali social structure" without a rigid hierarchy of caste principles. It does not appear from available evidences that they had adopted an exclusive religious values of either Buddhism or Hinduism"

(quoted by Dor B. Bista in his article "The structure of Nepalese Society" 1989.)

Sure there were casts before the ossification of valley society by cast system. And the kings coming to power belong to one or the other religious stream. But the spirit of non paritsan to any religion by state is also visible. This is why, the secular spirit of "modernization" should not be very alien to the cultural milieu of Nepalese peole. "At the time when most of the western society was primitive and living in hovels," says Dor Bahadur Bista
" the Nepalis had already developed an urban culture with a highly advanced technology of buliding temples, palaces, viharas, technique of bronze work, stone sculpture etc." And I think we had also experienced the wisdom, though in a primitive sense, of separating state with a particular religion well ahead than present day "modern" societies. Since the kathmandu valley provides us a magnificent case study of this religious and cultural assimilation, in the valley inhabitants generally called Nepalas, and which later came to be known as Newaras, an inquiry into the formation of
 Newar may be a worthwhile effort to understand the hints lie buried in the history.

I will stop now. I will appreciate counterarguments to the citations presented above. Before ending this posting I want to extend a piece of friendly advice to Amulya. I hope he will not mind. When suggesting some body to read reference books of interest, I think it would be sufficient just to give the reference of that book. It is the prerogative of other person whether to read that book or not. To say " read books on...." is to
============= Friendly advice accepted with thanks.

When i wrote "read books on.." I meant " with reference to... such and such book." the misunderstanding if any is regretted.

Lastly I thank mahesh for taking an interest inNepali politics culture andhistory and challenging me to greater clarity. I hope i have succeed at least some but i realise there are many out there more knowledgeable and more articulate than me and i encourage them to participate. The language used is purely rhetorical and no offence is intended to anybody includeing Mahesh.

Amulya Tuladhar
*clark University USA
============ assume that the other person has not read that book in question, which if the assumption is incorrect, only conveys the ignorence of the adviser, and even if the assumption is correct, such words rather carry a undertone of arrogance which is not very pleasant. By saying this I have also granted Amulya to point out any shortcomings in my writing or argument style which he does not find very pleasing.

mahesh maskey july 3 ,1995

******************************************************* Date: Mon, 18 Sep 1995 18:46:21 -0700 (PDT) From: Sujata Rana <srana@u.washington.edu> To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: info about a friend

Namaste to all,

I am desperately trying to track down a friend from Nepal. Her name is Sabina Thapa and I know that she is a student at Wheeling Jesuit College. I believe she started in January this year but I am not sure what she is studying. I think she was planning to go to Nepal sometime this summer so tshe might have already left. But if she has'nt or if someone can pass on her telephone/e-mail address, I would be really gratefu. SABINA, fif you are reading this e-mail, get in touch! Many thanks, Sujata Rana, Seattle.

************************************************************** Date: Mon, 18 Sep 95 22:24:10 EDT From: hemanta <HKS93001@UConnVM.UConn.Edu> Subject: Re: The Nepal Digest - September 15, 1995 (2 Ashwin 2052 BkSm) To: The Nepal Digest <NEPAL@cs.niu.edu>

The Economics department at the University of Connecticut raise some fund
 to help the family of Ramesh Mali, a Special Olympian Who was drowned off Hammonasset beach area, Long Island sound, during Special Olympics in New Haven, Connecticut in July 1995. The amount raised is being sent to Mali's family in Nepal.

Hemanta. Connecticut

******************************************************* From: NZUY63B@prodigy.com (MR SUBARNA P PRADHAN) To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu Subject: Peace Corp volunteers

Message to Mr Durga Dahal.

Dahaljyu, why do you have such a negative feeling about the Peace Corp volunteers? It seems that you can not take any advise or criticism (a constructive criticism if I may add) from any one and specially if it it from a foreigner. There are a whole lot of Peace Corp volunteers who has spent a great time and efforts in Nepal. They have donated their talents and knowhow there. Lot of them have maintained ties to Nepal and the Nepalese in the USA. Many of them have helped from the USA in various ways. If you have come across some not so great ones, then thats life. Lets build bridges instead of walls.

Subarna.

******************************************************** Date: Tue, 19 Sep 1995 16:32:22 +0700 (GMT) From: "Chandra P. Giri" <cpgiri@ait.ac.th> To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu Subject: Forwarded mail....

To AlT Alumuni !!

        Please, find attached a circular letter from Mr. Surendra Shrestha, who is a candidate for AITAA President. This is the first time, a non-thai is contesting for the post. Please, feel free to distribute it to your friends and colleagues.

Thanks.

Chandra Giri
(on behalf of Mr. Surendra Shrestha)
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******************************************* To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Date: Tue, 19 Sep 95 11:07:01 EDT Subject: A3 and Ratna Shrestha From: SPOKHARE@SYSTEMS.watstar.uwaterloo.ca (Shaligram Pokharel)

I agree with some of the points mentioned by Mr. Ratna Shrestha but I would like to add the following here,

Nepal cannot (with emphasis) develop with a 20 MW power project scattered around the country. The country does not only need electricity for lighting but also for other infrastructural development. The isolated 20 MW development would not lead Nepal to a better future. It is like putting about 30 kW pv station in Kodari and losing more than 25% ( which cannot be reduced) just for extending the transmission line for about four kilometers and losing another 15% on distribution.

Further, developing capacity is a big NARA of most of the people who advocated against the large projects in Nepal. But what did they do when they had opportunity to learn hydro power development in Nepal when Kulekhani I and II were being constructed? To oppose only?

It has taken almost 20 years for nepal to become independent in mechanical fabrication of cross flow turbine, the highest capacity of which is about 40 KW. One can see the turbine status in Syangja. I do not want to talk about the governers and electrical parts which still have a lot of trouble in operation. To think that Nepal develop a 20 MW installation capacity in the near future is a hopeless dream difficult to digest even by a person who does not know about hydropower.

Yes, Nepal might be able to generate about 5 MW if we can get some rotten salvaged turbine as a gift and do TAL TOOL on that to produce projects like Andhi Khola and may be the same with Jhimruk. If we are expecting to get more salvaged turbine units, then yes we can develop our hydropower at a minimum cost (?).

Yes, it is necessary to reduce our fossil fuel consumption, yes it is necessary to provide light to almost every household of Nepal and yes, it is necessary to mobilize the internal resources but what is important to understand that the it is very very important to avoid "HAUDE" statements as providing about 72 crores to make nepal Jhilimili. I think the learned person need some guidance on economics, hydrology, demand and the people's affordability and willingness to pay and of course environmental factor.
   One more thing is regarding subsidy. I do not agree that electricity is being subsidized. However, it is being priced at breakeven. The problem is not with pricing but with the management and leaks in NEA. If all the consumer's pay for their actual use of electricity then there would not be a question of so called subsidy. Who is to blame? I do not know. But I do not believe that by blaming some people or organization we can achieve anything. That is what has happened with anti-arun group. Most of them opposed in the pretext the Arun will come and they would still be keeping their voice high and do not have to do anything. But it is subsided ( temporarily I believe) and the anti groups have nothing to say? No homework? Just opportunities...........

I would urge them to think like this. The people who were anti-arun did not come from those place who have to eat food by 6 PM and sleep by 7PM. The people who protested Arun project did not have to sleep with their half stomach. The people who protested Arun did not come from Sarbahara Janata. WERE they? The people who protested did not come from those peoplse who did not have have a piece of costly land or a house in Kathmandu. Did they think twice before opposing it? And yet do they think they represent Nepal? No.... They have to see the economically deprived people of the reason. Kathmandu is not only Nepal, there is a large Nepal outside Kathmandu.

My comments are not stream lined but I suppose the reader gets the idea.

ASTU.

**************************************************** Date: Tue, 19 Sep 1995 12:19:52 -0400 From: RBASNET@aol.com To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Welcome to MEGHNA !!!!!

         CONGRATULATIONS !!!!!
                    We would like to congratulate our dear friend BOBBY AND SANTA BISTA who recently became parents of a new baby MEGHNA. We wish Meghna brings many many happiness in your future life.

Sincerely yours,

Ganesh,Shakti and Raj Basnet

******************************************************** Date: Tue, 19 Sep 95 15:03:50 EST From: spuri@phillips.com (sandeep puri) To: Nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Whereabouts of Anil Shah

     If anybody happens to know where Anil Shah (St.Xavier's '83-84) is
     right now, please e-mail me. As far as I know, he was in California
     last.
     
     Thank you

********************************************************** Date: Tue, 19 Sep 95 18:01:21 PDT From: rana@lan.nsc.com (Mike Rana) To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu Subject: Kathmadu post web site address

JAN_KARI:

Hello.. I am trying to get the web site address for Kathmandu post. Can someone please post this? Sincerely.. Manoj Rana

**************************************************************** From: dk2662@accunix.wjc.edu (Diwas Khati - student) Subject: Re: INFO WANTED To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu Date: Tue, 19 Sep 1995 22:24:35 -0400 (EDT)

If there is/are any Nepalis working at or living near one of the following hospitals, please e-mail me at<dk2662@accunix.wjc.edu>. If any of the TND readers happen to anyone like that, and if you think it is OK with you two (esp with him/her), please e-mail me. Your help will be greatly appreciated. thanks

1. West Penn Hospital, Pittsburgh, PA 2. Sewickley Valley Hospital, Sewickley, PA 3. Indiana University Hospital, Indiana, PA 4. Hamot Medical Center, Erie, PA 5. Cannonsburg Hospital, Cannonsburg, PA 6. The Medical Center of Beaver, Beaver, PA 7. Altoona Hospital, Altoona, PA 8. Washington Hospital, Washington, PA 9. Ohio Valley Hospital, Steubenville, OH 10. Timken Mercy Medical Center, Canton, OH

diwas dk2662@accunix.wjc.edu 316 Washington Ave, #981 Wheeling, WVa 26003

*********************************************************** Date: Tue, 19 Sep 1995 22:49:47 -0500 (CDT) From: Suraj Shrestha <cuss5@uxa.ecn.bgu.edu> Subject: Re: The Nepal Digest - September 18, 1995 (5 Ashwin 2052 BkSm) To: The Nepal Digest <NEPAL@cs.niu.edu>

Could you mail me add. of Kathmandu post.
       Thank you, appreciate it.

Suraj Sh.

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

*********************************************************************************************** Date: Wed, 20 Sep 1995 00:19:03 -0400 From: karkis@mail.med.upenn.edu (Sher B. Karki) To: Nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: News 9/19/1995

               Copyright 1995 British Broadcasting Corporation
                        BBC Summary of World Broadcasts

                         September 20, 1995, Wednesday

SECTION: Part 3 Asia-Pacific; SOUTH ASIA; NEPAL; EE/D2413/A

LENGTH: 111 words

HEADLINE: INTERNAL AFFAIRS; Newly formed government wins vote of confidence

SOURCE: Source: Radio Nepal, Kathmandu, in English 1415 gmt 18 Sep 95

 BODY:
   [12] Text of report by Radio Nepal

   In the House of Representatives today 107 members of parliament expressed their support in the vote of confidence in the government of Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba. Eighty-six parliamentarians were not in favour of the motion. Those supporting the vote of confidence motion were parliamentarians of the Nepali Congress, Rashtriya Prajatantra Party and Nepal Sadbhavana Party.

Earlier, (?paving) the motion in the House, Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deubasaid it was only through the united efforts that we can tackle the problems ofpoverty and unemployment existing in the country and strengthen parliamentary democracy.

SECTION: Part 3 Asia-Pacific; SOUTH ASIA; NEPAL; EE/D2413/A

LENGTH: 97 words

HEADLINE: INTERNAL AFFAIRS; New premier says fiscal discipline first priority

SOURCE: Source: All-India Radio external service, New Delhi, in English 1530 gmt 18 Sep 95

 BODY:
   [13] Excerpts from report by All-India Radio

   In Nepal, the three-party coalition government has won the vote of confidence... Participating in the day-long debate, the main opposition Communist Party of Nepal -UML Unified Marxist-Leninist charged that the ruling coalition was an unethical alliance.

   Talking to our Kathmandu correspondent name indistinct , the prime minister Sher Bahadur Deuba said he will expand his council of ministers in a day or two. Mr Deuba said his first priority will be to bring fiscal discipline and put the ailing economy back on the rails.c

SECTION: Part 3 Asia-Pacific; SOUTH ASIA; NEPAL; EE/D2412/A

LENGTH: 123 words

HEADLINE: INTERNAL AFFAIRS; Ousted communists won't back new coalition

SOURCE: Source: Radio Nepal, Kathmandu, in English 1415 gmt 17 Sep 95

 BODY:
   [10] Text of report by Radio Nepal

   The Communist Party of Nepal (United Marxist-Leninist) as heard - should be" Unified" CPN-UML has decided not to give its support in the vote of confidence to the present coalition government which is to be tabled in the House of Representatives tomorrow 18th September . A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the CPN-UML parliamentary party under the chairmanship of party Secretary-General Madhav Kumar Nepal in Kathmandu today.

   Speaking to reporters after the meeting, party Secretary-General Mr Nepal said that there was no reason to support the present coalition government, which had been formed out of jealousy at the popular works carried out by the CPN-UML government.
 

                      Copyright 1995 Kyodo News Service
                            Japan Economic Newswire

                          SEPTEMBER 19, 1995, TUESDAY

LENGTH: 103 words

HEADLINE: Nepalese climber killed on Mt. Everest

DATELINE: KATHMANDU, Sept. 19 Kyodo

 BODY:
   A Nepalese climber was buried alive by an avalanche Sept. 10 when he made an attempt to scale Mt. Everest for the seventh time, the Nepalese Mountaineering Association said Monday.

   Lakpa Nuru was swept away while climbing the northeast face of the 8,848-meter mountain with a South Korean expedition.

   Lakpa Nuru, who hailed from the Solukhumbu district in east Nepal, home to the renowned Sherpa mountaineers, had first set foot on Everest's summit in 1992. The last time he had reached the summit was with Japan's Nihon University expedition, which tamed Everest from its northeast ridge this spring.

                 Copyright 1995 The Financial Times Limited;
                                Financial Times

                          September 19, 1995, Tuesday

SECTION: Pg. 6

LENGTH: 53 words

HEADLINE: Nepalese coalition wins vote

BYLINE: By REUTER

DATELINE: KATHMANDU

 BODY:
     Nepal's week-old three-party coalition government, headed by Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, yesterday won a confidence vote in the lower house of parliament. The mandatory confidence motion, introduced by Mr Deuba, received 107 votes in favour and 86 against, the speaker of the House of Representatives

                Copyright 1995 The Scotsman Publications Ltd.
                                  The Scotsman

                           September 18, 1995, Monday

SECTION: Pg. 14

LENGTH: 3320 words

HEADLINE: Life in a cooking pot

BYLINE: Lea Wyler Dreamed Of Providing Enough Food For All Nepal'S Street Children. Now Adoptive 'Mother' To 39 Of Them, She Is Making Her Dream A Reality, Says Claire Smith

 BODY:
    EVERY year thousands of western tourists flock to the incredibly beautiful and poor Himalayan country of Nepal. Many are shocked to see tiny ragged children among the beggars on the streets but beyond flinging them a few rupees most feel helpless in the face of such overwhelming poverty.

    However there is one woman who does not turn away when the children ask for help. Lea Wyler, a former actress, has adopted 39 street children since she first went to Nepal in 1990.

    Every winter the woman they call "Mummy Lea" takes in more from the streets. During the summer months they live at boarding schools and Lea comes to Europe and raises money to keep her every growing family.

    She is an energetic 48, brimming with laughter. Originally from Switzerland, she speaks softly, with only the faintest continental lilt.

    The chain of events which took her to Nepal began in Scotland at the Samye Ling Tibetan Centre in Dumfriesshire.

    Lea had first visited the centre when her acting career was in full swing with parts in films, television and on stage, mostly in Switzerland.

    She was impressed by its founder Akong Rinpoche and years later, when difficult family circumstances brought her to the verge of breakdown, she knew she had to return.

    She accompanied Rinpoche on a trip to India, where she was so shocked by the poverty she decided to give up her career to help feed the hungry. Her first attempt to provide charity failed dismally when she tried to give out bread to Indian beggars and started a fight in which a young girl was hit on the head.

    "I decided I had to change my life, do something. It was like flicking a switch.

    Everything changed in a moment."

    Akong Rinpoche suggested Lea should set up a soup kitchen in Bhoudnath, Kathmandu. Together they set up a charity organisation to raise funds to run it. She says: "I had a dream of a cooking pot so big it could provide enough for everyone, where no one who needed food would ever be turned away."

    Lea and Akong Rinpoche went to Nepal, bought a tent and some huge cooking pots and hired a couple of Nepali chefs. Soon the soup kitchen was feeding 200 people a day but Lea was haunted by the sight of the little children who joined the people waiting for breakfasts of sweet tea and bread and lunch of dhal bhat, the rice lentils and vegetable stew which is the staple diet in Nepal.
    By day the children grinned for the tourists, asking them for cash, pens, or foreign money they would sell to dealers. At night Lea knew they slept on the pavements where they were easy prey for street gangs who beat them up and robbed them.

    She says: "It always shocked me to see these little kids sleeping outside with their heads on the pavement but I didn't know how I could help."

    Then one day Lea met a street child she could not walk away from.

    His name was Bidur.

    "He was lying on the floor with only a rice bag to cover him. He had obviously been beaten up in the night; he was covered in blood and bruises.

    When I offered him some tea he was so cold he couldn't really lift the cup. I took him to hospital. They gave me some medicine to give him, antibiotics that had to be taken at certain times.

    "When I had to go out and give food I put him in the tent with the cooks and told them to look after him. When I came back Bidur had disappeared. I was really shocked. I thought he had run away and got all panicky, thinking he had to take all the antibiotics.

    "Then all of a sudden I saw the lid of the rice pot starting to move. He had climbed inside it and was eating his way around the rice stuck to the sides. For him it was like heaven.

    "That was a redemption for me. I had always had this dream of a pot big enough for everyone's needs, and there he was inside it."

    Lea took Bidur home and started to care for him. At first, she says, she was frightened by the thought of being responsible for a child but soon realised it was just a question of getting on and doing it.

    "It was nothing to think about, just something to do. He was there, he needed help."

    Soon another boy turned up, then another. By the end of the year she had seven children. Bidur is now 15 and a bright, happy, hardworking schoolboy.

    Many of the older street kids are now doing very well at school. Lea tells a story of how she arranged a Swiss pen friend for one of her boys.
    "He wrote and said: 'Don't you hate school? Isn't school a drag?' My boy didn't understand. They are so grateful for what they get."

    As her family grows bigger, Lea is discovering more about the history of the children and what they have been through. Some have lived through hell on earth. One worked in a carpet factory where he slept at his loom and worked for 15 hours a day, seven days a week, until his hands became too swollen and he was thrown onto the streets. Another was employed as a street cleaner and allowed to sleep for only two hours at a time. Many children are rejected when their fathers leave home or die and the mother remarries.

    Underlying all their stories is the same story of poverty and ignorance.

    When they first come into Lea's house the children are enveloped with love and security.

    She says: "I call it marinating with love. Last winter I had nine children, they all slept in a room with five or six bunk beds. We feed them anything they want, give them nice colourful clothes. Everyone gets a doll to take to bed.

    "They are cuddled non-stop and they love it, they need it. The need for cuddles is much bigger than the need for food, the feeling of belonging somewhere. Before they can be sent to school they need to have that self confidence, so they know they are someone who can be loved."

    Lea is now helped to look after the children and to run the soup kitchen by Tibetan, Nepali and western volunteers.

    One of them, a Samye Ling nun called Ani Damchoe was sponsored to go to
 Nepal by the comedian Billy Connolly. Lea is developing other projects, particularly to help train and educate the Nepali women.

    Although she cannot spend all the time with the children, Lea still feels she is looking after them when she is away fundraising. It costs L 35 per child, per month and the more money people give, the more children can be taken off the streets.

    She says: "I cannot love them like a normal mother can, not with 39 children.

    All I can do is provide the security, provide something that is totally taken for granted in the West.

    "There are some children who need me so desperately, if I wasn't so busy I could be swayed to becoming like a real clinging mother. But I believe I am there to nurture them, to help them stand up. I don't miss them because if you miss, you immediately pull towards yourself."

    This winter, Lea plans to look at a house big enough for a hundred children. Then all the children could live together all year round and go to day school.
"A hundred places, then we would have no limits," she says, eyes gleaming.

    "Then more children could be picked up off the street. There are thousands more. "I hear them every day. Each time I go into the street I look at the kids and think: "I know I am going to end up mother to some of those but I never know which ones it is going to be."

                     Copyright 1995 Agence France Presse
                              Agence France Presse

                     September 18, 1995 08:21 Eastern Time

SECTION: International news

LENGTH: 774 words

HEADLINE: Nepalese government wins confidence motion, stays in power

DATELINE: (new series)

 BODY:
   KATHMANDU, Sept 18 (AFP) - Nepal's new coalition government won a vote of confidence in the House of Representatives Monday, allowing it to stay in power, a parliamentary official said.

   The government, headed by Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba of the Nepali Congress party, received 107 votes in the 205-member house, four more than needed, the official said.

   The week-old coalition government replaced the 10-month-old Nepal Communist Party-United Marxist and Leninist government, which had been voted from power September 10 on a parliamentary censure motion.

   The government change followed a decision by the Supreme Court in June to overturn on constitutional grounds a ruling by King Birendra which dissolved parliament. The king had ordered parliament dissolved at the request of then-prime minister Man Mohan Adhikari, who claimed it was inhibiting actions of his government.

   The new government has only a five-member cabinet, but Deuba earlier said he would distribute 18 portfolios he was holding himself after the government won the vote of confidence.

   KATHMANDU, Sept 18 (AFP) - Nepal's new coalition government won a vote of confidence in the House of Representatives Monday, allowing it to stay in power, parliament speaker Ram Chandra Paudyel said.

   The government, headed by Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba of the Nepali Congress (NC) party, received 107 votes in the 205-member house, four more than needed, the official said.

   The week-old coalition government replaced the 10-month-old Nepal Communist Party-United Marxist and Leninist (NCP-UML) government, which had been voted from power September 10 on a parliamentary censure motion.

   The government change followed a decision by the Supreme Court in June to overturn on constitutional grounds a ruling by King Birendra which dissolved parliament. The king had ordered parliament dissolved at the request of then-prime minister Man Mohan Adhikari, who claimed it was inhibiting actions of his government.

   The new government has only a five-member cabinet, but Deuba earlier said he would distribute 18 portfolios he was holding himself after the government won the vote of confidence.

   President of Nepali Congress, Krishna Prasad Bhattarai, earlier expressed confidence that the coalition government "will run for next four years."

   He said that political parties should let the government work "independently and efficiently" without interfering.

   "It is only in the communist system where the government is dictated by its party," Bhattarai added.

   NCP-UML spokesmen have cast doubts on the coalition government's ability to remain in office even for six months and have voiced hopes of returning to power.

   But observers say the new coalition has a good chance of succeeding in view of the backing it enjoys from several veteran leaders and past prime ministers. They include Surya Bahadur Thapa and Lokendra Bahadur Chand of the Rastriya Prajatantra Party as well as NC's Bhattarai and Girija Prasad Koirala.

   Thapa and Chand are veterans of the days when Nepal was under the authoritarian panchayat rule while Bhattarai and Koirala have led the country since the shift to multi-party democracy in 1990.

                    Copyright 1995 Deutsche Presse-Agentur
                            Deutsche Presse-Agentur

                     September 18, 1995, Monday, BC Cycle
                          14:19 Central European Time

SECTION: International News

LENGTH: 387 words

HEADLINE: Nepal government wins confidence vote

DATELINE: Kathmandu

 BODY:
    The week-old three-party coalition of Prime Minister Bahadu Deuba won a vote of confidence in the Nepalese parliament on Monday.

    The coalition, comprising the Nepali Congress, National Democratic Party and the Nepal Sadbhabana Party, took over from the minority communist government which lost a confidence vote on September 11.

    Deuba's coalition won Monday's ballot by a vote of 107 to 86.

    The prime minister called for the vote, saying he needed the support of parliament to carry out his polices of fighting poverty and improving the economic situation.

    His victory will enable him to expand the five-member cabinet he formed soon after taking office last week.

    Analysts said Deuba, 49, will be guided in running the country by a
"coalition high command," comprising senior leaders of the coalition parties.

    Newspapers said the high command comprised four former prime ministers - Surya Bahadur Thapa and Lokendra Bahadur Chand of the National Democratic Party and Krishna Prasad Bhattarai and Girija Prasad Koirala of the Nepali Congress, as well as Gajendra Narayan Singh of the Nepal Sadbhabana Party. dpa sb ms
                      

                     Copyright 1995 Inter Press Service
                              Inter Press Service

                           September 18, 1995, Monday

LENGTH: 930 words

HEADLINE: NEPAL -WOMEN: FOR WOMEN PORTERS, BACK-BREAKING WORK IS MOSTLY FUN

BYLINE: By Birman Maharjan

DATELINE: POKHARA, NEPAL, Sept. 18

 BODY:
   Like most Nepali women, Kanchhi Gurung smokes by clasping her cigarette on the curl of her little finger and sucking the smoke from the other end through the hollow of her palm.

   In her gold-and-coral nose ring and mauve velvet vest, Kanchhi is trying to look her best. She exhales blue smoke through her nostrils as she waits outside a recruiting office for trekking porters at this Central Nepal town -- the starting point for many mountaineering expeditions.

  As the monsoons wind down this time of the year, the Himalayan trekking season has started and there is plenty of work. Kanchhi is soon signed on to carry expedition gear for a group of German tourists on a hike around the Annapurna massif north of Pokhara.

   The six Germans have hired twenty porters. Four of them are women and come from Kanchhi's village -- a two day's walk northeast of Pokhara. They will be paid 150 rupees ($ 3) a day.

   Porters have to carry loads of up to 30 kg on their backs during the three-week trek which will take them over the snow-bound Thorung La Pass at 5,600 meters above sea level.

   "It's a good way to make some money, so we can buy new clothes for Dasain
(festival)," Kanchhi says. "Besides, on a trek we girls have a lot of independence, and we have fun."

   Carrying 30 kg up a steep snow mountain at high altitudes may not be the average person's idea of fun, but for Nepal's women porters trekking expeditions not only offer a source of hard cash, but also a rare chance to be free from the male-dominated society of their home villages.

ore than a mid-level civil servant's salary in faraway Kathmandu.

   "For women, access and control to money represents a form of empowerment, being able to earn money is the overriding motivating factor in portering," says Dibya Gurung, a researcher with the King Mahendra Trust for Nature Conservation.

   Gurung interviewed hundreds of women porters across Nepal. She found that although poverty was the main reason why women leave villages to do the back-breaking work, they also want to escape the drudgery, want to be free and want to unwind.

   Nepali researchers caution activists, women's groups and city-based feminists against doing the politically correct thing and trying to curb female portering in Nepal.

   "The life of a woman porter, however hard it may be, is one that they have chosen because they had no other alternatives," says Tshering Tenpa Lama of the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP).

   She adds: "For women porters, the work is an employment opportunity which they do not want jeopardized."

   Lama found that women porters hardly ever work alone. They join portering with other female relatives or fellow-villagers. Some have run away from abusive husbands, or fled their village to earn some of their own money.

   Women porters in the trekking expeditions carry loads of up to 30 kg, as much their male counterparts, but they are mostly paid the same rates. Trekking agencies also provide them with warm clothes for high altitudes, dark glasses to prevent snow blindness and shoes. Inside national parks, they are also provided kerosene for their cooking fires.

   Despite all the facilities and legal safeguards, Gurung says there are numerous cases where women have been harassed by male "Naike" -- the head porter who hires other porters.

   The clothing provided usually does not fit the small-framed women, and the apparel is made for men and the shoes are too big. Gurung found most women porters shunned the trekking outfit and wore their own clothing.

   Many trekking Naikes say they prefer women porters. They may not be as strong as the men, but since they do not smoke and drink as much they are almost always fitter. Women porters are also regarded as being more sincere and trust-worthy.

   "Instead of stopping female porters, the trekking industry should encourage them to be paid at par with their male counterparts and have more gender-sensitive facilities like separate tents and better working conditions," says Lama.

   "Many people in Nepal say women are used to being beasts of burden, so they have no problems portering. Well, being used to it does not mean they suffer any less," she adds.

   Researchers say trekking porters are treated much better and have to carry lighter loads for shorter durations than household portering. Most parts of
 Nepal are without roads, and almost everything -- water, firewood, food, building materials -- is carried on human backs.

   Usually, it is the women in the family who end up carrying water in pots from the river and firewood and fodder from the forests. They often carry loads of up to 130 percent of their body weight. Researchers found one woman who weighed 45 kg carrying a load of firewood weighing 65 kg on a three hour climb uphill to her village.

   Compared to this kind of work, portering for a trekking expedition is like a picnic.
   "Almost all the women we talked to were quite happy doing portering," says Lama. Her findings also show that women porters saved more of their money than men porters and the cash gave them a rare chance to decide what they wanted to do with it.

   On a trail in Nepal, one is never far away from the singing and laughing of women porters sharing a joke as they struggle up the hill. Says Gurung: "It is part of the Nepali culture. You joke about the hardship and the suffering and you laugh. That makes it almost bearable."

                       Copyright 1995 Xinhua News Agency

The materials in the Xinhua file were compiled by The Xinhua News Agency. These materials may not be republished without the express written consent of The Xinhua News Agency.

                           SEPTEMBER 18, 1995, MONDAY

LENGTH: 129 words

HEADLINE: king of nepal to address parliament soon

DATELINE: kathmandu, september 18; ITEM NO: 0918183

 BODY:
   king birendra of nepal will address the joint session of both houses of the parliament thursday to present programs and policies of the newly formed coalition government, a royal palace press release said today. the three-party coalition government achieved a vote of confidence earlier today in the house of representatives after it was formed last week to replace the minority communist government. the new government only announced a five-member cabinet so far and it was believed that the cabinet would be expanded gradually after the confidence vote. the parliament is to hold a vote of thanks after the king presents his address on behalf of the government. the king will summon the members of both houses to be present at the parliament for purpose thursday.

                        Copyright 1995 Reuters, Limited

                      September 18, 1995, Monday, BC cycle

LENGTH: 657 words

HEADLINE: Legendary Gurkhas still hang on in Singapore

BYLINE: By Tan Ee Lyn

DATELINE: SINGAPORE

 BODY:
   They are considered to be the best killers in the world. But in the post-Cold War era the fate of the legendary Gurkha solider is uncertain.

   Highly skilled and deadly in close combat, Gurkhas and their razor-sharp instincts- and trademark razor-sharp knives known as kukris- are schooled in toughness almost from birth by the harsh conditions of their mountainous Nepal homeland.

  But at a time when computers are taking over many combat duties and defense forces in most parts of the world are being scaled down after the Cold War's end, the ultimate fate of the Gurkha soldier is unknown.

   "With defense cuts happening around the world, the Gurkhas in the British Army are disappearing down a black hole," B. M. Niven, the commanding officer of the Gurkha contingent in Singapore, said in an interview.

   Singapore is a good example of the changing role of the Gurkhas, as they now work for the police force here.

   But even though their numbers are falling, their awesome fighting reputation still helps Gurkhas find employment far afield, including in Britain, India, Hong Kong, Singapore and Brunei.

   "Despite the missiles and hi-tech of modern war, what matters finally is that your resilience and basic fighting qualities allow you to remain standing with your adversary at your feet," Niven said.

   In Singapore, Gurkhas guard the homes of top ministers and man the watchtowers of top security prisons.

   The first batch of Gurkha soldiers- 144 ex-British Army servicemen- were deployed in Singapore in 1950 after fighting in Southeast Asia and Europe during World War II, Niven said.

   The Gurkha is renowned for his loyalty and toughness, but is perhaps most famous for deadly close combat, especially the legendary skill of swiping the human head cleanly off with just one stroke of his kukri, a large curved fighting knife.

   This prowess has inspired so much fear that it has long been mistakenly believed that a Gurkha, having once drawn his kukri, must draw blood before returning it to its scabbard.

   That myth helped when Gurkhas fought in the British Army in the Falklands War in 1982.

   "That reputation ran miles ahead of them...They (the Argentinians) made sure they never got face to face with them," Niven said.

   In Southeast Asia, the Gurkhas are remembered for their involvement during the Malayan Emergency of 1948-1960, marked by clashes with Communist rebels, and during confrontations between Indonesia and neighboring countries in the early 1960s.

   Gurkha specialists also took part in the Gulf War of 1991.

   But what is that gives the Gurkhas their aura of military supremacy?

   "They are survivors. Under the harsh, tough conditions in the mountains, the weak Nepal members of society die. Under those conditions, your children, cows, animals would have died from sickness, falling down cliffs or have succumbed in some other way. And so, for those who reach even puberty, well, you're a tough customer," Niven said.

   "Due to their upbringing, they are resilient, tough and their instincts are razor sharp. They are very lithe and have an incredible sense of direction. Even in the city, their instinct is sharp," Niven said.

   The Gurkha's extreme sense of loyalty also sets him apart from most other soldiers.

   "They are tremendously loyal, it's part of the contract. Unlike you and I, they do not moralise and theorise about whatever they are told to do. Once an order is given by those who command them, they instinctively obey it," Niven said.

   "Thousands have died outside their mountain homes on foreign battlefields for reasons and causes they never questioned."

   The number of Gurkhas deployed around the world has dwindled as a result of Britain's post-Cold War defense cuts and only 2,500 Nepalis are taken into the Gurkha contingents each year during the January-February recruitment period.

   More than 200,000 fought alongside the British in World War One and 40 battalions served in World War Two.

***************************************************** Date: Wed, 20 Sep 1995 01:51:24 -0400 From: HyperGodar@aol.com Apparently-To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu

                   A Tale of Bells and Gongs!
                                    *****************************

  When I was in the 2nd grade, 7yrs. old, the notion of acquiring MAGIC that would lead to having not to study and getting whatever I wanted propelled me and a friend of mine to rush to the "bhagwan" after every lunch break and perform the ardous task of praying sincerely for the "boon"- MAGIC. In the classroom also was a "bhagwan" , right on top of the blackboard. I'd spend a few minutes everyday placating him with prayers as well. We did it for a month and seeing the futility in it, abandoned the whole idea.
   I went on to confess to my parents about what a good deed I'd been doing, praying to god everyday for a month and named the gods to them. They didn't utter a word against it. Now there's a hit!
   I was a boarder at St. Xavier's Godavari then, a school run by Jesuits, and the "bhagwans" that I visited everyday for a month were Jesus and Mary. I spent six years staring up ones a day to Jesus on the cross above the blackboard. How I now despise what the intentions of those of that faith were, trying to get to and influence us innocent kids- all done in order for a Christian earth and a papal rule, all done in the name of god, how apt!!! Not that I don't relish the memories of then and there. When the time came for me to fill the S.L.C. registration form, I was a Hindu for that was what I was and what my parents were and their parents and theirs
.....................
    Many years have passed and now I realize we once had our own religion and that Hinduism was the brainwork of yogis and maharajas from India. I recall being taught in school that our's was the Sanatan Dharma, one passed on since ages. What did we do before people started calling themselves rishis and sadhus and Hindus? Isn't it that Hinduism overshadowed the lives of our forefathers so much later on that they were compelled to identify themselves with Hinduism???? Vestiges of what was practiced by the Greeks and the Trojans are still to be seen in Nepal. Take the sacrifices or massacres rather of all those goats and buffalos that take place at Hanuman Dhoka every Dasain for instance. There also are the hearth gods clans have to relate to.........
    Aren't all major religions of the world all POLITICS after all? The irony is that everyone, instead of simply choosing the cream and discarding the rest tend to swallow the whole darned thing!! Another irony is that instead of reverting to complacency about the knowledge they have acquired, safe enough an action for all the rest, people tend to start "crowning" themselves as bhagwans, matas, shris, maharajas, prophets, god's sons and daughters, god's chosen ones, god's soldiers and blah blah blah. Nationalism would be a better cause I guess, for I figure religion to be a lost one, and for if not then Nepal might be history sooner than later. JAI NEPAL :) :) :)

-MANJIL THAPA

*************************************************************8 Date: Wed, 20 Sep 95 14:37:58 EDT From: Bidya Ranjeet <CAPADM07@UConnVM.UConn.Edu> Subject: Dashain To: Rajpal <nepal@cs.niu.edu>

The Nepalese Community in Connecticut will be celebrating Dashain on Ocober 7th, 1995 at the University of Connecticut. Nepalses friends and families are invit d to celebrate Dashain in Connecticut. Although the fall foliage has not come t
 its peak it has started to show its beautiful colors. For more information please contact any of us listed below:

Bidya and Narendra Ranjeet 203-450-0259 Hemanta and Rashmi Shrestha 203-487-0046 Pratima and Ram Upadhyay 203-646-8491 Mukti and Sarita Upadhyay 203-429-4649 Kyeng and Ramesh Malla 203-486-3683 Kavita and Jeff Peterson 203-564-0243 Roshan and Anu Shrestha 203-423-1868 Geeta Pfau 203-450-0259 Prabhat Pokharel 203-429-2084 Laxman Sharma 203-481-8994 Hari and Sita Koirala 203-456-1657

BIJAYA DASHMI KO HARDIK SHUBHAKAMANA!!!!

********************************************************* Date: Thu, 21 Sep 95 09:16:12 EST From: pradhan@mncppc.state.md.us To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu, niu.edu@mncppc.state.md.us Subject: need to know Suresh Manandhar's e-mail add.

          Hello, TND Editors
          Surendra Pradhan is looking for Suresh Manandhar's e-mail
          address. I believe Suresh is in UK, if anybody has his
          address, please send to the following address:

                      pradhan@mncppc.state.md.us

          Thanks for your cooperation.

************************************************************ Date: Thu, 21 Sep 95 13:06:29 -0400 To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Re: Christianity in Nepal...

chandrama@aol.com (Chandrama) wrote:
>At risk of being swamped with e-mail, I'm looking for any tales of or
>experiences with, good or bad, Christiananity in Nepal. I'm helping a
>friend argue the point that Nepalis who convert to Christianity have a
>difficult time in Nepal given the law against proselytism, and the general
>feelings against such a Western religion.
>
>I'd prefer to get direct e-mail. I'm at chandrama@aol.com...

I don't know where you got this notion that people that are of ANY western religion in Nepal have trouble. Have you ever been to Nepal? Nepalis are a very gentle people and they are not like the Westerners that you are trying to associate them with. It is the Western religions that come and have come to South-east Asia that have been responsible for harassing the indigenous popoulation and religion. If there is ANY negative feeling in Nepal (which I have not seen) it is probably due to the fact that many of the missionaries that go to Nepal and Southeast Asia have been arrogant enough to put down many people of other faiths just because they are "different" and want to believe something different -- in fact, they say that these people are "heathens" and need to be saved...

Look at the history of Western religions. They have done so much harm and they continue to do so. They continue to entice the poor to convert to Christianity by giving them money and then forcing them to come to church. If the religion is truly soooo much better, then wouldn't we all automatially convert to it? Why is there this constant harassment and bribery?

Maybe you need to go to Southeast Asia and see what the culture their is like and see how it is RADICALLY different from Western culture. You will find a gentle, friendly, open people who NEVER force their religious views (or any other views) on anyone!! Not everyone in the world finds the need to exploit others and the need to feel superior.

Sunil Kukreja & Sudeshna Ghosh

********************************************************** Date: Thu, 21 Sep 95 13:08:53 -0400 From: "Rajesh B. Shrestha" <rshresth@bullwinkle.bbn.com> To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Re: Christianity in Nepal...

Cross-posted from SCN: From: mayudog@aol.com (Mayudog)

Sunil Kukreja & Sudeshna Ghosh wrote:

Blah, blah, blah. . .

Christ, why didn't you respond to the question privately, like the original message asked? Instead you have to bray your own ignorance like a jackass on the loose in Biratnagar.

First, Nepal isn't in southeast Asia, no matter how you try to stretch it.

Second, there is indeed a low-level persecution of Christians in Nepal; it's low level, but it's there. This summer several Christians (Nepali and Indian) were jailed in Ilam. I actually responded to the original e-mail request to say that I thought that in the eight years since I originally lived in Nepal, things were becoming a little more relaxed in regard to Nepali Christians openly professing their "unorthodox" religion.

And finally, you need to bone up a little on your knowledge of "Eastern" religions before you start belly-aching about the sins of Christian missionaries forcing their beliefs down the throats of wayward primitives.
 Check out the history of Hinduism in Nepal for a second before you start feeling too holier than thou. Hinduism is a foreign concept to a large percentage of the peoples of Nepal; many of the ethnic groups of Nepal had their own religious practices before Hindu oppressors rode roughshod over their traditional ways of life; their own cultures and beliefs were destroyed by this imperialistic religion which was grafted onto the politicial structure of the country. Nepal became a Hindu kingdom despite the fact that a large of the people within its new borders had little connection to Hinduism; the king became a god whom they were forced to worship. (For one, the Kirati people had their own holy book, the Mundhum--I may have that spelled wrong--their own priests, gods, and ceremonies, although many no longer know much about their traditional religious beliefs because they're being taught stupid things in their second grade readers like "the cow is our mother." Ha!)

Stop and take a few breaths next time before you fire back that next reply. Stop getting all het up and indignant and think about things more thoroughly.

Go ahead and flame me,

peter G Peter G. (Mayudog@aol.com)

******************************************************************** Date: Thu, 21 Sep 95 13:11:51 -0400 To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Payment in Nepal From: Holger Wurzbacher <Holger.Wurzbacher@Maschinenbau.TU-Ilmenau.DE>

I want to spend my holiday this October in Nepal. I know that payment in Nepal must always be made in Nepalese currency which can be bought at Foreign Currency Exchange Counters. But what is better to convert into Nepalese currency US Dollar or travellers4 cheques?

If you have experience, please let me know. Thanks Holger Wurzbacher

***************************************************************** Date: Thu, 21 Sep 95 13:13:16 -0400 To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Re: KTM POST

Cross-posted from SCN: From: hdhungel@dolphin.upenn.edu (Himesh Dhungel)

I had a chance to browse through Rajendra Shrestha's Home Page and particularly the electronic version of the KTM Post. I like it. Just one problem, though. I could neither post the letter to the editor
(spelling mistake in the home page--editer, Rajendra please note) nor could I post the survey.

Other than that, the system seems to work fine, as opposed to the claims by someone a few weeks ago about the archaic systems used in Nepal or the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.

HIMESH DHUNGEL Center for Energy and the Environment hdhungel@dolphin.upenn.edu University of Pennsylvania

********************************************************* Date: Fri, 22 Sep 95 09:45:26 -0400 To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Re: RFD: soc.religion.vaishnava moderated

Cross-posted from SCN:
--------------------- From: jai@mantra.com (Dr. Jai Maharaj)

Namaste, Russ:

I support the point of view that soc.religion.hindu (moderated) already exists and that it is unnecessary to create soc.religion.vaishnava (moderated).

     What follows is another excerpt from HINDUISM TODAY; January, 1991, ISSN 0896-0801; (send E-Mail to hinduism@mcimail.com).

     This provides a brief description of Hinduism, something I did not include when I posted brief excerpts of Hinduism's main strands:

(Excerpt)

     FOUNDED: Hinduism, the world's oldest religion has no beginning -- it predates recorded history.

     FOUNDER: Hinduism has no human founder.

     MAJOR SCRIPTURES: The VED(AS), the UPANISHAD(S), the AGAM(AS), etc.

     ADHERENTS: Over 650,000,000, mostly in India, Shri Lanka, Nepal, Malaysia, Indonesia, Mauritius, Africa, Europe and North America.

     SECTS: There are three main denominations: Shaivism, Shaktism and Vaishnavism --and liberal, non-sectarian forms, most importantly the Smart(a) Sampradaya.

     SYNOPSIS: Hinduism is a vast and profound religion. It worships one Supreme Reality (called by many names) and teaches that all souls ultimately realize Truth.

     There is no eternal hell, no damnation,. It accepts all genuine spiritual paths -- from pure monism ("God alone exists") to theistic dualism ("When shall I know His Grace?"). Each soul is free to find his own way, whether by devotion, austerity, meditation (yog) or selfless service. Stress is placed on temple worship, scripture and the Guru/disciple tradition. Festivals, pilgrimage, chanting of holy hymns and home worship are dynamic practices. Love, non-violence, good conduct and the law of Dharm(a) define the Hindu path. Hinduism explains that the soul reincarnates until all karm(as) are resolved and God-Realization is attained. The magnificent holy temples, the peaceful piety of the Hindu home, the subtle metaphysics and the science of Yog(a) all play their part. Hinduism is a mystical religion, leading the devotee to
*personally experience* the Truth within, finally reaching the pinnacle of consciousness where man and God are one.

(End of excerpt)

 *-=Om Shanti=-* Jai Maharaj

The above is my second follow-up article to the following inquiry:

In the article <qumybvktmz7.fsf@cyclone.Stanford.EDU>, bearing the date and time 19 Sep 1995 20:15:56 -0700, Russ Allbery <rra@cs.stanford.edu> wrote:
> . . .
> Would it be possible for you (someone?) to briefly describe for
> those of us who are woefully ignorant about world religions the
> main distinctions between Viashnava and Hinduism? Or explain
> why this is a bad question that no one who understood the
> situation would ask?
> That was the one point I was confused on when I read the RFD.
> --
> Russ Allbery (rra@cs.stanford.edu)
> http://www-leland.stanford.e du/~rra/

************************************************** Date: Fri, 22 Sep 95 09:46:33 -0400 To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: DASHAIN PARTY From: embassy <72130.2141@CompuServe.COM>

TO: All Nepalese Nationals Residing in the Americas

FROM: Basudev P. Dhungana,
                Royal Nepalese Ambassador
                Washington, DC

Dear Friends,

        On behalf of the Embassy and on my own, I wish to extend
 best wishes to you all on the occasion of Dashain 2052.

        I also would like to invite you all to join us in a lunch to be organized at my residence, 2730, 34th Place, NW,
 Washington, DC 20007 from 12 noon to 4 pm on Sunday, October 1, 1995 (the day of Phoolpati) to celebrate this year's Dashain.

RSVP: (202) 667-4550

********************************************************** Date: Fri, 22 Sep 95 09:48:40 -0400 To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Re: Disaster Management in Nepal: A Summary From: atuladhar@jack.clarku.edu

Disaster Management in Nepal
===============================

[This is a summary of the article written by Hideotomi Oi, the Chief Advisor or the Water-Induced Disaster Prevention Technical Center, now with Jica , Nepal. The article appeared in STOP DISASTERS, number 24, spring 1995]

1. Over the last decade we have had several natural disasters, the earthquake in East nepal in 1988 at 6.6 Richter which killed 721 persons and destroyed 62,467 houses and the disastrous floods of 1993 that killed 1500 and rendered half a million homeless.

2. The Udaypur 1988 earthquake was the first natural disaster for which Nepal appealed for international assistance through the UN, nepal appealed again in 1993 for flood relief.

3. The disaster managment in Nepal falls under the following categories of societal responses:

I. Institutional Arrangement II. Information for Disaster Management III. Flood Forecasting and Warning IV. Earthquake Forecasting and Warning

Institutions 4. The Natural Calamity (Relief) Act promulgated in 1982 and amended in 1990 and 1992 set up a disaster relief structure as follows: Central Disaster Relief Committe chaired by the Home Minister with ex-offio Secretaries from concerned Ministres, Army, Police, Red Cross and Scouts.
[wonder why the Paropakar Sangathan and the Marwari sewa samitee, just 2 examples of indigenous relief organizeations with amuch better track record than the Royal (steal disaster relief foreign donations) led scouts (for a long time dhirendra's bhag-banda with the social service funds appropriated by the Queen) and the Red Cross international aid appropriated by the sundry Princesses.)

5. District Standing Committee chaired by the Chief District Officer with members of the political parties, relevant govt agencies, red cross, agriculture development bank, and nepal food corp; plus a Local Disaster Committee.

Information 6. All of the 75 CDO offices are linked by the Ministry of Home by telephone 71 units (out of 75 districts), fax (62), or wireless (41). Communication link between district hq and villages are lacking in most places, each district has 40-50 villages in its jurisdiction with most having no telephone links and in 1993 VDC chairmanhad to walk for 2-3 days just to aprrise the CDO office of the damages.

7. Donors need quick and accurate information about the extent of damage and the scope of relief to rush in but this information flow is constrained in disaster.

8. There is some wireless communication links between village level police substations and army posts that could be used during disaster but this is not fast and relief (as would be if there is a security problem threatening the locaal power)

Flood Forecasting 9. The Department of Hydrology and \Meteerology receives satellite information directly from a Geo-Stationary Satellite and from the American National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) through India. They are useful for monitoring weather disturbances and giving advnace notice of impending floods and possible prepration.

10. in 1984, Nepal and India initiaed a Flood Forecasting Project for some common rivers with 16 rainfall stations n 9 water level stations. The data collected at these stations are sent to DHM in Kathmandu and to Patna. Nepal has yet to use this data to develop any forecasting models for actual use.

11. The plan enviioned, monitoring water and rainfall levels in real time basin by Kathmandu Department of Hydrology and to develop flood forecast models and to issue such warnings by phones to necessary villages when model thresholds are crossed and then to install sirens to warn the villagers to seeks shelter if a flood is expected. The plan has not happened yet.

Earthquake Forecasting 12. The National Seismological Network monitors microseismic events. The recorded data are used to locate the epicenter of each even and broadcast by radio if over 4.0 in Richter. No early warning system has been developed.

[lately, geologists at u of colorado have been warning a "nabbe saal" 1934 AD or 1990 VS scale (estimated at 7.6 Richter) massive earthquake due to happen anytime now in Nepal and the Gangetic belt.]

compiled and summarized by Amulya tuladhar Clark university, usa 0

*************************************************************** Date: Fri, 22 Sep 95 09:49:23 -0400 To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Subject: Foreign Aid and TB Control Politics in Nepal From: atuladhar@jack.clarku.edu

Foreign Aid and TB Control Policy in Nepal
============================================

[Source: The Lancet (British Medical Journal) vol 346, no. 8991, August 5,1995 issue, page 346, a commentary by R J Fryatt of the Health Policy Unit, London School of Tropical Medicine and hygiene, London, UK.]

1. In the late 1980s, the World health Organization introduced the short-course chemotherapy (SCC) ( as opposed to the long course 24 month chemotheraphy before) in national programs in the Indian subcontinent as in important step in trying to control tuberculosis ( primarily taking into consideration the difficulty of logistics to monitor long course effectively to stem epidemic of tb?, Dr Mahesh Maskey, please help us here.)

2. SCC involves the use of 3-4 drugs including rifampicin and pyrazinamide for a duration of 6-9 months, about half the dosage of previously recommended regimens.

3. The policy to encourage introduction of SCC was partly a reaction to its adoption in the private sector in many areas without any subsequent monitoring. SCC has been successfully implemented elsewhere so this was introduced by tb control agencies in Nepal.

4. The Nepal national TB project received considerable technical and financial support from 1987 from Japan. SCC was introduced to half of Nepal's districts but factors such as lack of supervision, inadequate training, poor drug suplly logisitics severely limited its application.

5. The problem of rifampicin supply, the most expensive drug, has been solved by a 3-4 year supply by the Japanese phamaceutical industry as a result of lobbying by the japenese agovt, japanese nationla tb association.

6. Distribution of the drugs remains a problems (at least partly due to all the tb officers using the tb jeeps to do tarkari shopping in kathmandu, janakpur and birgung instead of sending them off to remote places). The result is erratic supply and intermittent therapy.

7. The supply difficulties have raised concerns about the development of resistance to the treatment. If multidrug resistance (MDR-TB) should develop, the effectiveness of SCC will be severely diminished with no new drugs to replace it.

8. Resistance is already encountered among TB patients in Nepal who have not received antituberculosis drugs before: 5-24% harbour organisms resistant to at least one drug (primary resistance ) and the proportion is higher in kathmandu valley. [This probably explains why nepalese who tested negative to TB tests in nepal test positive to PPD in CDC threshold values in America, and with the breakdown in garbage disposal and continued deterioration of sanitation we can expect TB in Kathmandu to reach epidemic prportion.]

9. The problem of inappropriate SCC use leading to MDR_TB could be makde even worse by the use of rifampicin as single drug. Rifampicin will not be combined with other antituberculosis drugs despide some evidence that use of combined drugs improves compliance and thereby reduces the likelihood of resistance.

10. The japanense pharmaceutical industry does not make combination theraphy (for legal reasons) and is NOT WILLING TO HAVE ITS (GIFT) RIFAMPICIN USED IN FORMULATIONS PRODUCED OUTSIDE JAPAN. ATTEMPTS TO CHANGE THE FORM THIS GIFT TAKES (string attached foreign aid) HAVE BEEN UNSUCCESSFUL.

11. Fears of MDR-TB have led to calls for SCC introductins to be restricted to districts where its use can be directly observed. Directly observed theraphy (DOT) is liekly to slow in districts not serviced by NGOs. How DOTS will be implemented and whether it will be successful is unclear.

12. Meanwhile the demand for SCC will probably remain high and the national TB project might not have sufficient influence to ensure that the cetral logistics division of the govt health services distributes SCC only to the districts with DOTS.

13. As a compromise rifampicinwill be put blister package with other SCC so all drugs can be used togehter, the packing technology will be developed in Nepal, hopefully. Whether this strategy will be successfull remains unclear. For instance, only rifampicin culd be taken out to treat sexually transmitted disease.

14. Thus the provision of free SCC by the Japanese pharmaceutical industry is still seen as crucial for the development of TB control in nepal. However, this free rifampicin may well be distributed throughout nepal before there is adequate infrastructure to ensure its proper use. [ It is not clear if this british medical commentator is motivated more by commercial competition of rifampicin capturing a market to prevent entry of other TB, possibly, Brittish pharmaceutical products, to Nepal andindia market??].

15. Consequently, resistance to rifampicin may be enhanced, and perhaps and epidemic of MDR-TB will follow in a country with open borders to INdia.

16. THE JAPANESE PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY MAY END UP BEING BLAMED FOR HASTENING THE DEVELOPMENT OF MDR-TB IN A CONTINENT where the impact of tuberculosis is likely to increase enormously.

Summarized and compiled for scn by Amulya Tuladhar Clark university, usa

*********************************************************** From: bpandey@metro.mccneb.edu (Bhuban Pandey) Subject: BIJAYA DASHAMI KO SHUVAKAMANA To: NEPAL@cs.niu.edu Date: Fri, 22 Sep 95 14:47:24 CDT Hi Netters!

HAPPY BIJAYA DASHAMI!

We like to thank all those involved in bringing the Kathmandu Post to the Web, especially Rajendra Shrestha, Sanjib Rajbhandari and Kumar Oli.

For the past couple of days, we have not been able to access that document in http://www.cen.uiuc.edu/~rshresth/ktmpost/news- home.html. I have been getting the following message:

       "Read Error--Can't access the document"

I'm wondering whether you are having a similar problem.

Thank you.

Bhuban, Prabha and Bhumika Pandey Omaha, Nebraska

************************************************************ Date: Fri, 22 Sep 1995 16:13:19 -0500 (EST) From: ATULADHAR@vax.clarku.edu To: nepal@cs.niu.edu Description: Disaster Management in Nepal: A Summary

Disaster Management in Nepal
===============================
 
[This is a summary of the article written by Hideotomi Oi, the Chief Advisor or the Water-Induced Disaster Prevention Technical Center, now with Jica , Nepal. The article appeared in STOP DISASTERS, number 24, spring 1995]
  1. Over the last decade we have had several natural disasters, the earthquake in East nepal in 1988 at 6.6 Richter which killed 721 persons and destroyed 62,467 houses and the disastrous floods of 1993 that killed 1500 and rendered half a million homeless.
  2. The Udaypur 1988 earthquake was the first natural disaster for which Nepal appealed for international assistance through the UN, nepal appealed again in 1993 for flood relief.
  3. The disaster managment in Nepal falls under the following categories of societal responses:
  I. Institutional Arrangement II. Information for Disaster Management III. Flood Forecasting and Warning IV. Earthquake Forecasting and Warning
  Institutions 4. The Natural Calamity (Relief) Act promulgated in 1982 and amended in 1990 and 1992 set up a disaster relief structure as follows: Central Disaster Relief Committe chaired by the Home Minister with ex-offio Secretaries from concerned Ministres, Army, Police, Red Cross and Scouts.
[wonder why the Paropakar Sangathan and the Marwari sewa samitee, just 2 examples of indigenous relief organizeations with amuch better track record than the Royal (steal disaster relief foreign donations) led scouts (for a long time dhirendra's bhag-banda with the social service funds appropriated by the Queen) and the Red Cross international aid appropriated by the sundry Princesses.)
  5. District Standing Committee chaired by the Chief District Officer with members of the political parties, relevant govt agencies, red cross, agriculture development bank, and nepal food corp; plus a Local Disaster Committee.
  Information 6. All of the 75 CDO offices are linked by the Ministry of Home by telephone 71 units (out of 75 districts), fax (62), or wireless (41). Communication link between district hq and villages are lacking in most places, each district has 40-50 villages in its jurisdiction with most having no telephone links and in 1993 VDC chairmanhad to walk for 2-3 days just to aprrise the CDO office of the damages.
  7. Donors need quick and accurate information about the extent of damage and the scope of relief to rush in but this information flow is constrained in disaster.
  8. There is some wireless communication links between village level police substations and army posts that could be used during disaster but this is not fast and relief (as would be if there is a security problem threatening the locaal power)
  Flood Forecasting 9. The Department of Hydrology and \Meteerology receives satellite information directly from a Geo-Stationary Satellite and from the American National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) through India. They are useful for monitoring weather disturbances and giving advnace notice of impending floods and possible prepration.
  10. in 1984, Nepal and India initiaed a Flood Forecasting Project for some common rivers with 16 rainfall stations n 9 water level stations. The data collected at these stations are sent to DHM in Kathmandu and to Patna. Nepal has yet to use this data to develop any forecasting models for actual use.
  11. The plan enviioned, monitoring water and rainfall levels in real time basin by Kathmandu Department of Hydrology and to develop flood forecast models and to issue such warnings by phones to necessary villages when model thresholds are crossed and then to install sirens to warn the villagers to seeks shelter if a flood is expected. The plan has not happened yet.
  Earthquake Forecasting 12. The National Seismological Network monitors microseismic events. The recorded data are used to locate the epicenter of each even and broadcast by radio if over 4.0 in Richter. No early warning system has been developed.
 
[lately, geologists at u of colorado have been warning a "nabbe saal" 1934 AD or 1990 VS scale (estimated at 7.6 Richter) massive earthquake due to happen anytime now in Nepal and the Gangetic belt.]
  compiled and summarized by Amulya tuladhar Clark university, usa 0

************************************************************* From: kbhattar@lynx.dac.neu.edu (Keshab Bhattarai) Date: 22-SEP-1995 11:37:43 Description: The New Council of Ministers in Nepal

Panchayat party seems to have been very successful in bargaining power in the newly formed Council of Ministers by capturing most of the ministries responsible for developmental activities.
  Division of portfolios according to some informed sources are following.
(One or two names of the Assistant Ministers is missing).
  Ministers:
  1. Sher Bahadur Deuba, PM, Royal Palace, Defence, General Administration 2. Bala Br. Rai, Labor and Social Welfare 3. Shekh Idris , Forest 4. Padma Sunder Lawati, Agriculture* 5. Dhundi Raj Shastri, Industry 6. Chiranjibi Wagle, Communication 7. Balaram Gharti Magar, Housing and Physical Planning* 8. Fatte Singh Tharu, Commerce* 9. Khum Br. Khadka, Home 10. Govind Raj Joshi, Education 11. Pashupati Shamsher JBR, Water Resources* 12. Chakra Bastola, Tourism 13. Ram Sharan Mahat, Finance 14. Prakash Chandra Lohani, Foreign* 15. Bijay Gacchedar, Construction and Transport 16. Arjun Narshingh KC, Health 17. Bhim Br. Tamamng, Law 18. Kamal Thapa, Local Development* 19. Gajendra N. Singh, Supply 20. Buddhi M. Tamang, Land Reform*
  State Minister,
  21. Ram Krishn Acharya, Local Development*
 
  Assistant Ministers
  22. Shanti Shamsher Rana, Housing* 23. P. Bhandari, Land Reform 24. Mohanchandra Roy, Agriculture 25. R. Parajuli, Commerce 26. ......?
 

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