Gopal's Feed
Nov 22, 2012

Nepal rites to banish ghosts of fallen Gurkha soldiers

KATHMANDU (Reuters) – Wrapped in white and with their heads shaven, retired Gurkha soldiers sat cross-legged on the stems of dried rice plants for three days of symbolic and traditional mourning, laying to rest the souls of fellow soldiers who fought and died for Britain.

Hailing from the foothills of the Himalayas, the Gurkhas are known for their fierce fighting skills and big curved khukuri knife. They have served in the British army since 1815 when a peace agreement was reached by the British East India Company after it suffered heavy casualties during an invasion of Nepal.

Nov 11, 2012

Feuding politicians take Nepal to brink of ruin

KATHMANDU, Nov 12 (Reuters) – Apart from a small bust of
Chairman Mao beside his armchair, Nepali Prime Minister Baburam
Bhattarai flaunts no trappings of his revolutionary past: these
days he talks of foreign investment, infrastructure projects and
double-digit growth.

The trouble is that, since they handed over their guns at
the end of a decade-long insurrection in 2006, Nepal’s Maoists
have done no better at running the Himalayan republic than the
corrupt and incompetent political mainstream they joined.

Oct 15, 2012

First gay sports fest shows changing Nepal attitudes

KATHMANDU (Reuters) – Clad in pink, blue and yellow clothes, more than 250 lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) athletes took part in a sports festival in the Nepali capital, Kathmandu, at the weekend, billed by organizers as the first in South Asia.

About 1,500 spectators cheered as the athletes, waving rainbow colored flags, marched at the Dasharath Stadium in the heart of Kathmandu in the opening ceremony of the three-day event that showed how attitudes are changing, albeit slowly, in the conservative, Hindu-majority nation.

Sep 28, 2012

British, Chinese among 19 dead in Nepal plane crash

KATHMANDU (Reuters) – A small plane struck a bird and crashed shortly after takeoff from the Nepali capital of Kathmandu on Friday, killing 19 people, including seven British and five Chinese passengers, officials said.

The crash of the propeller-driven Dornier aircraft was the sixth fatal air accident in less than two years in Nepal, where more than a dozen small private carriers often brave bad weather to fly to mountain areas served by no proper road network.

Aug 13, 2012
via FaithWorld

Nepal celebrates popular Gai Jatra festival to lead the dead to heaven


(A masked devotee takes part in a parade commemorating the Neku Jatra-Mataya festival, the festival of lights, in Lalitpur August 4, 2012. REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar)

Hundreds of young boys, their faces smeared with mascara and painted as cows, trot barefoot along the streets of Nepal’s capital in the Gai Jatra festival, the procession of cows.

Jul 31, 2012

Nepal harvest rush threatens “Himalayan Viagra”

KATHMANDU (Reuters) – For decades a rare fungus valued as an aphrodisiac and dubbed “Himalayan Viagra” has been a source of income for poor villagers in Nepal’s remote Himalayan foothills.

Men, women and children stream into high meadows every year to harvest the fungus called Yarsagumba, which grows from dead moth larvae. High quality specimens fetch thousands of dollars a kilo.

Jul 17, 2012

Likely Nepal election delay may test fragile peace process

KATHMANDU (Reuters) – Political squabbles are likely to delay until next year Nepal’s first national election since the abolition of the monarchy, dealing a major blow to hopes for stability in the Himalayan republic as it recovers from years of civil war.

Maoist Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai had called for elections to be held on November 22 after a special assembly missed its deadline to draft a new constitution. But opposition parties have rejected the date as impractical and called for Bhattarai to resign. He has so far refused.

Jun 26, 2012
via FaithWorld

Nepalis worship with fervour as ancient rain god festival adapts to the times


(A statue of the Red Machindranath is lowered from its chariot at the end of the Bhotojatra festival in Lalitpur June 24, 2012. REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar)

Thousands of Nepalis threw coins and marigolds at a giant chariot over the weekend in a centuries-old ritual to appease the rain god and assure a good harvest, as well as guaranteeing good omens for the country’s rulers.

Jun 25, 2012

Nepalis worship with fervor as ancient festival adapts

KATHMANDU (Reuters) – Thousands of Nepalis threw coins and marigolds at a giant chariot over the weekend in a centuries-old ritual to appease the rain god and assure a good harvest, as well as guaranteeing good omens for the country’s rulers.

The annual two-month chariot festival for Rato Machhindranath, revered as the god of rain, has for countless generations been presided over by Nepal’s kings.

Jun 22, 2012

Gays hail Nepal move to liberalize ID cards

KATHMANDU (Reuters) – Hindu-majority Nepal said on Friday that it will start issuing identification cards with three categories for genders – a move hailed by gay activists, who said previous regulations had been discriminatory.

Up until now, the government has issued the cards only to people who identified themselves as either male or female.