When Narendra Lal Shrestha was elected the new president of the All Nepal Football Association (ANFA), the football governing body in the country, in October, he vowed to bring Nepali football “back on track”.
Two monuments in Kathmandu valley tell two vastly different tales about Nepal’s efforts to preserve its historical heritage. The Kasthamandap Temple adjoining the Kathmandu Durbar Square, the temple after which the valley gets its name, was completely destroyed by last year’s earthquakes.
Nepal has been steadily building its profile as a top cricket nation, particularly after its maiden appearance in the 2014 ICC World Twenty20 (or the T20 world cup) in Bangladesh. Nepali men’s cricket team had won two of its three round robin matches in the competition, failing to qualify for the Super10 main draw on the basis of inferior run rate.
Even in Kathmandu, which is hundreds of kilometers away from the main Indo-Nepal trading points, perhaps nine out of ten shops will (illegally) accept Indian currency notes. In Tarai-Madhesh abutting India, the use of Indian currency for transitional purposes is still more widespread.
We believe that solutions to all outstanding problems in Nepal can be found by staying within the bounds of the new constitution. The constitution is a forever-evolving document, which can (and should) be changed with the changing needs of the society it represents. This is why we are troubled when our otherwise responsible politicians start floating extra-constitutional solutions.
Our concern following the 12-point understanding between government representatives and Dr Govinda KC—who had been on his 10th fast-unto-death for 22 days before he broke his fast on Sunday—is that the depressing past trend of not following through on agreements with Dr KC could be repeated.
Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA), the country’s sole power distributor, is among the most dysfunctional government bureaucracies, its inefficiency and bloated workforce perhaps matched only by the profligate, but also much more maligned, Nepal Oil Corporation.
Our worst fears are being realized. Over the past one month we have in this space repeatedly emphasized the importance of political consensus—among at least the four major political actors who own up post-2006 changes, namely Nepali Congress, CPN-UML, CPN (Maoist Center) and Madheshi Morcha—in order to amend the constitution.
Twenty-year-old Amrita Kumari of Murtiya, Saptari, epitomizes the kind of indirect, structural violence on women that is common in Tarai-Madhesh. Last year, her parents had arranged for her to get married to the family of Sagar Mahato of Lalbandi of the same district.
The 14-km Naubise-Nagdhunga stretch can take what seems like an eternity to traverse for the weary passengers trying to enter the national capital by road. Long lines of vehicles, big and small, wind their way down from the chicken-neck of Nagdhunga check-post, waiting for the police inspection at the check-post after which they can roll into Kathmandu Valley.