Monthly Archives: September 2010

Why Nepali Congress Can’t be Saved From it’s Doom?

Emergence of UML in ’50s proved to be quite a conundrum for Nepali Congress. And, the upsurge of Maoists during and after their decade-long insurrection was more than just a kiss of death for the old party, which was loosing supports from all around because of its inept governance and corruption. It would be no exaggeration (and aggravation?) to say that NC’s final days have since been counted.

Rise of Maoists gave people a ‘respite’ and choice from rubbish NC and UML. Once a leviathan, NC has now reduced to a tiny faction if compared to Maoists. UML’s case is no different too.

Where Congress is heading with an old, senile, septuagenarian at its helm? Yes, towards its doom. But, this time more rapidly than before. Sher Bahadur Deuba also was no good. But, Congressmen could still have enjoyed some longer moments before finally being consumed by the death were there a young leadership other than Sushil Koirala at their helm.

Koirala can’t even enunciate words properly. He slurs. Deuba is not any good either. Congressmen must have been ashamed when they heard their top leaders Koirala and Deuba give poor speech at inauguration ceremony of their 12th national convention. Even I, one who just hates NC, felt ashamed while hearing them. Despite their evil acts, they’re nonetheless top leaders and they represent our country. But, when they show their ineptitude even in speech (let’s not talk about their deeds), it surely embarrasses us.

Giving speech in our own language should have been no difficult for any Nepalese. Moreover, they were ‘top leaders’ already walking a long distance to reach to their current positions. So poor their performance was. I doubt, are they even literate, let alone educated? Even a lower secondary boy can use better language than theirs. What foreign guests might have thought as to the poor performance of NC leaders in stage? Except for NC leaders, all other guests delivered quite a good speech. Ramchandra Paudel was the only congressman to do good in his speech.

Yet again, communists are unparalleled in oratory. Prachanda delivered the best speech.

Election of Koirala was no surprise at all. Even a dog would have won the election if it was from Koirala family (dynasty?).

With no vision and policy for uplift of working class, NC is already serving elites and the bourgeoisie. It is to die someday, if not today. Nepal no longer needs NC. Let it die. Let the burden go.

Quote of the Day: ‘Flaw’ of Socialism

"…And the fundamental flaw in socialism is that it reduces the human being
to a cog in the wheel. … Under a socialist economy, the people exist to
empower the government. It should be the other way around: A government
should exist to empower and protect the people."

Christin O’Donnell, A republican nominee for 2010 election for US Senate in Delaware.

(Source: Slate.com)

The Best Sitcom

The era of melodramatic and boy-meets-girl sort of TV serials seems to be gone. Now, situation comedies lead the idiot box. They’re quick and astute to reflect the mood of society and thus becoming popular.

Among them, I think Jire Khursani (जीरे खुर्सानी) stands out as the best. With the legions of senior and experienced actors such as: Shivahari Paudyal, Kiran KC, Sabita Gurung, Rajaram Paudel and talented, young man Jitu Nepal, Jire Khursani is the only sitcom to present its actors in their best. They all act so perfectly that the sitcom looks so real and live and that’s the best part of it.

Jire Khursani is also good at the skillful use of phrases and idioms.

Actually, I don’t like Jitu Nepal’s acting much but I praise him for his innovative concepts as the co-director of the sitcom.

Hat off to the great team of Jire Khursani.

 
              (Picture source: elsewhere on the web)

Blockbuster Friends and Two and a Half-Man (starring Charlie Sheen) are some of the foreign sitcoms I watch.

I place Meri Bassai (मेरी बास्सै), another popular sitcom, at no. 2. The sitcom’s bucolic portrayal epitomizes the Nepali countryside. And, it deserves accolades for giving the true picture of countryside in a very beautiful way. Despite new faces in its lead roles, it is one of the few best comedic series. Characters are live. But, I don’t like Shurbir Pundit much. Once and still a sole hero of countless radio dramas, his indulgence in visual world has not reaped as much fame as in the radio.

And, Tito Satya (तीतो सत्य) and so on…

Death of Magazines

I didn’t buy the current issue of Himal magazine. I instead read it on it’s website.

This is the first time ever I read the only magazine I buy on its digital format. It is not that I have stopped paying for the print version of the magazine – which I’ve been buying for more than a decade — from now on. I know I will not stop buying it, but convenience of getting favourite magazines free on their digital forms, either on PC, Notebook or smartphone, is stealing the limelight.

Nonetheless, reading favourite magazines in their print versions is always an authentic experience (of reading). But, world is growing more digital every next moment. If you can get updated news in real time right on your smartphone, why bother for magazines — whose contents are no longer new and updated until next issue hits the newsstand.

Books will survive the ruthless Internet. So will newspapers and weeklies. But, I don’t think magazines with longer gap of publication will, such as: fortnightly or monthly. Even the glossy magazines with longer publication gap are meeting their deaths. I read recently on a site that Gourmet, National Geographic Adventure, American glossy magazines had to announce their closure in late 2009 with former after 70 years of publication.

Even in our poor country, where computers and Internet are still out of the reach of most of us, smartphones have made it easy to browse favourite contents on the Internet. And, mobile service providers have done an excellent job in providing their customers mobile internet service via GPRS.

Internet is now only a few strokes away for most Nepalis who use mobile/smart phones. Thus are magazines and books in their digital formats.

As I can’t get them here at local newsstands, I read Rolling Stone, Esquire, TIME etc. on their ebook formats. Will Himal be added to the list someday? Can’t say what happens next, but for now I love getting it in its print version.

Money Earns Money

Italian Prime Minister septuagenarian billionaire Silvio Berlusconi thinks he has a lot of young women who love him. And, that’s not because he’s a young, hunky Adonis but because he’s ‘loaded’ despite his old age.

Italy’s one of the richest men was not only prating around. His statements certainly make senses and he’s not wrong.

Money earns money. A person who already has had 100 Rs. can earn another 100. I mean, chances are maximum for him to add more to his fortune. His 100 Rs. can attract another 100 somehow.

Laxman Babu Shrestha, a top contractor, builder and engineer could be taken as an example. He already had Chitwan Construction and Engineering, a large firm. Later, he added Mankamana Darshan Pvt. Ltd.that operates Nepal’s first cable car in Manakamana Temple. He then installed Nepal’s largest plant to produce powder milk in Chitwan. His progress doesn’t stop here. His money keeps earning more money. Yet again, he finds his new fortune in Mankamana Bikash Bank, a recently established bank.

Money after money; he earned millions with thousands, billions with millions and so on…

But what about those who’re cash-strapped, paupers? They can’t earn 2 Rs. with their 1 Re. And, earning 100 Rs. is something like a dream of far distant for them. You know what I’m alluding to?

It’s simple: You need money to invest and without investment you can’t earn. And, investment needs substantial amount of money.

He was selling Samosa, Jeri, Pakora etc. on his small foul-wheeled cart near a cinema. It was some 15 years ago.

Even after more than a decade, I see him selling the same items in his same stained, dirty cart with same old, ragged clothes. The only change I saw is he’s not stationed near the cinema. He — a Madhesi descent — now roams around  pushing his cart all day perspiring.

He’s only an example.Those who crush pebbles at the banks of Mahesh Khola and Trishuli along the Prithvi Highway for a mere few rupees are destined to keep crushing rubbles for their lifetime. Porters are to lift loads for their lifetime. So are coolies to sweat in the sun, paupers to keep dying in poverty etc. No change. Not a slightest improvement at all.

It is touted that Nepali society has undergone big changes over the decades. Why those ‘big changes’ failed to deliver? Politics is fucked up. And, leaders ‘cracked up’. Those were only political and social changes and they failed to deliver economical prosperity to the strapped population. Economical structure of our society is still the same as it was hundred years ago. Without a real economical change, no such ‘big’ political and social changes can deliver. Enough of political movements, we now need a revolution in economical front.

I recall a short story I read in grade 7 with a title ‘Money Attracts Money‘ where a poor boy Dhruba inadvertently drops his only bill of 1 Re. into a moneybox while trying to steal from the box.

Photo of the Day: Prabal Gurung

Prabal Gurung, a rare example of Nepalese prominence in abroad. A fashion designer, he has presented his creations at one of the world’s greatest fashion shows: New York Fashion Week, recently. Among his creations, I loved this one. Adorned with red stripe, this attire in light oceanic blue, we could say is largely inspired from traditional ”Fariya” or say Newari dress Haku Patasi. Looks great.

    
              (Photo taken from Yahoo! News)

Why Teej is More Popular Than Dashain & Tihar

It’s often believed that ‘Janai Purnima‘ is a festival of men just like Teej for women. Well, although Janai Purnima marks a national holiday, it’s not celebrated with the same excitement, fervor and enthusiasm as in Teej.  Men don’t revel in Janai Purnima. Most of them don’t even bother to get their wrists tied with sacred threads, the main feature of the festival. Despite being one of the greatest festivals in Hindu tradition, Janai Purnima is slowly losing it’s relevance as a national holiday at the height of fading hardcore Hindu norms and values.

One of the main flaws of Janai Purnima is it is just not possible to survive longer at the height of modernization with its antiquated rituals. One can hardly be appealed to tie dully colored threads in their wrist.

But, Teej has a very different story. Teej is more about music, food and fashion than just worshiping Lord Shiva. And, mushrooming media has played a great role in making Teej wider and more popular. Music, dance, ostentatious wearings and eatings – these are the key features of Teej that are only making it more appealing, popular and also at the same time notorious, too. From a small girl to aging oldies, women are seen reveling in the great festival disregard of their opinions as to in what way Teej should be celebrated.

Not only women, men equally rejoice the festival. When I texted a female friend asking how you celebrating ‘your’ festival, she disagreed and replied Teej is now ‘our’ festival. She was hinting at the widening popularity of Teej among men. Yes, Teej is basically for women, but it has nonetheless become an appealing festival for men too in recent years.

And, burgeoning media has stoked up excitements in Teej by promoting events and airing Teej-songs and videos round the clock since months before Teej arrives. Music and dance are what can keep people enthralled and Teej is all about that. Besides this, Lord Shiva is another appealing part of Teej. He’s the most beloved god and Teej marks his extensive worshiping with women and girls taking fast.

I think Teej is the only Hindu fiesta after Fagu Purnima (Holi) that has been able to keep pace with rapid modernization and transition of society.

Great festivals Dashain and Tihar, however, have failed in this regard. These behemoths are very far from being populist as Teej. Dashain is criticized for cruel animal killings and sacrifices while Tihar is notorious for gambling and unhealthy card games in one of the world’s poorest countries.

Teej should be declared national holiday without further ado, for it’s already become a popular national festival.