Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from September, 2005

Attacks on the fourth estate.

One of the victims of Maoist insurgency and King’s terrorocracy has been the fourth estate – mass media that flourished under 12 years of democracy in Nepal. From only about two daily broadsheet, one radio station, and one television station, all owned by government, Nepal has witnessed an unprecedented level of media boom. There are several daily broadsheets, news magazines, five nepali television stations, and over 40 radio stations all over the country. The beneficiary, nepali people who have benefited from competitive views, have access to local information, can watch quality television programs, and run their own radio stations. In last several years, lok-geet (folk songs) have become a mainstay (I believe largely due to FMs). But, the plurality of view-points are antithetical to autocratic King and totalitarian Maoists.

Maoists regularly threaten, kidnap and kill journalists and reporters. For Maoists, anyone who writes against their atrocities are “enemy of people”. For King an…

Ever cried for your country?

From Sept 10, 2005 Kathmandu Post.

Ever cried for your country?



By BAN WHI MIN
- Nepalis complain about the caste system and corrupt officers. They openly vent their anger against the government. But have they ever thought about Nepal's real problems? I believe that they have not. I want to say that Nepal's real problems are lack of patriotism among the people and lack of love for one another. This is the conclusion I have reached during my stay. This summer, I did voluntary work from July 5 to July 30 at FHI Ever Vision School, Matatirtha, Kathmandu.
Let me first tell you about my country, Korea. This might help you understand my point.
Just after the Korean War, which claimed lives of more than 5 million Koreans, Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world. Without natural resources, Korea had no choice but to desperately struggle for its survival by all means. Under this gloomy situation, Koreans envied other Asian countries like Japan, Taiwan, and Nepal.
Korean governmen…

PHD

I am thinking about possibilities of getting into school for PHD program next Fall. At this point, this is an extremely priliminary thought but I wrote to a professor at Columbia Univeristy, asking whether I could see him when I am in New York coming Friday. Let's see how things go.

In Minneapolis

With Kanhaiya, infront of Teleplan (where Kanhaiya works) on September 2, 2005
Chanhassen, Minnesota

"Democracy didn't work in Nepal" - oh! Really?

Dr. Khagendra Thapa argues on “Why democracy didn’t work in Nepal?” “poorer countries such as Nepal and many others, which have introduced democracy, have sunk into a vicious circle of corruption, injustice, inequitable distribution of wealth and resources.” Dr. Thapa who has a degree from UK, Canda, and US and also teaches at Ferris State University, regularly (if you have been following his writings you would know what I am talking about), discharge venum against all political actors, labeling them corrupt and criminals. He further writes “Corruption, lying, stealing, looting, vandalizing, littering, etc. have become the norms of the Nepali society, even though all these vices used to be non-existent and unheard of in Nepal.

What Dr. Thapa and likes argue are:
1) Nepal became poorer since the introduction of democracy.
2) All political parties and its leaders corrupt
3) Nepal was a peaceful shangrila in pre-1990 period.

Is this true?

One really has to have lived in the Mars for last decad…

King Gyanendra weakening slowly but surely.

Reports coming out of Nepal say that King Gyanendra has cancelled visits to New York to attend annual United Nations General Assembly. Today’s Kantipur, referring to highly placed sources at Ministry of Foreign Affairs, writes both internal and external pressures culminated in cancellation of trip. After three years in power, King Gyanendra finally seems to have felt the heat. As King resorts to autocratic means on the back of extreme conservative elements in Nepal, he is alienating himself from almost every major political and economic actors in Nepal. Mainstream political parties, led by young leaders are openly championing the republican agenda. Recently, CPN (UML) went on the republican march and Nepali Congresss Party by muting its bylaws on the question of monarchy has shown that it no longer considers monarchy as an essential element in Nepal’s polity. Further, the huge mass demonstrations led by leader of civil society have openly challenged the status-quo tilt of major mainst…

Nepal's Development Regions: Creating an Obstacle to national integration ?

When someone asks me where I am from in Nepal, I often get confused. Geographically speaking Tanahun, where I am from, lies in the middle of the country. Thus, I should say I am from central Nepal. But, because Nepal is divided into five development regions and Tanahun comes under Western development region, I internalized Tanahun as being in the West of Nepal.

Today, suddenly a thought emerged, the geographical nomeniculture of development regions, like almost everything in Nepa,l is Kathmandu centric and reflects what state and rulers perceived themselves as. Eventhough Kathmandu is not exactly at the center of Nepal, the development regions are named as though Kathmandu is the center of Nepal. For example, Kathmandu lies in Central Development region and anything east lies in the Eastern region and most of the Nepal is West. By this logic, Nepal has more West than east or center. There are three different variations of West - Western Development Region (Gandaki, Lumbini and Dhaulagi…