Learn from others

This refers to the letter “Clarification” (THT, Oct. 3) by Madhav Karki, deputy director general, ICIMOD, which was written in response to my edit page article “Honeybees in the Himalayas”

(THT, Sept. 26). I would like to point out that whichever way ICIMOD would define its role, it should be seriously concerned that the knowledge it has apparently generated during the last two decades or more has not benefited even the host country. I see an urgent need for it to revisit its mandate.

The ‘pilot’ honeybee project itself suffers from design drawbacks, because even after two full years, it could not benefit even the 359 participating farmers, let alone steadily replicate itself throughout the country. These days, Nepal is dotted with microfinance and other organisations including the ubiquitous forest user groups.

ICIMOD experts should familiarise themselves with the larger development landscape in which they operate, and try to make their initiatives demand-driven like the community forestry in Nepal.

Bihari Krishna Shrestha, Chakupat Green Block, Patan

Labour rights

This refers to the news report “Kantipur row bid to defame us: Bhattarai” (THT, Oct. 4). I agree with Dr Baburam Bhattarai that a political outfit cannot be blamed for a trade union’s disagreement with the management of any organisation.

But one should understand that a trade union does not have any right to interfere with the workers’ right to work freely. If the demands made by the Maoist-affiliated trade union are genuine, why are the workers affiliated to other trade unions not supporting them? I believe the duty of any trade union is to protect workers’ rights, instead of promoting the interests of any political party.

Surendra Bajracharya, Gatthaghar, Bhaktapur

Way out

At a time when almost all the political parties are gearing up for the election, Maoists’ unreasonable demands and their refusal to contest the polls has violated the peace agreement and the interim constitution. Things have become worse because of the Maoist pullout from the government. The readjustment of schedule by the Election Commission hasn’t brought a change in their stances either.

To bring the peace process back on track, all the political parties and members of the civil society should come forward. A special session of the interim parliament should form a neutral interim government, which should hold a referendum on the future course the country

should take.

R Sayami, Kathmandu


Though the Maoists have been demanding a “republic”, their despicable act of attacking free press through trade union action is against the very spirit of democracy. Their act has made people wonder what would be the kind of republican setup they envisage.

It is because of the violent activities conducted by the Maoists that some countries still refuse to recognise them as a peaceful political force. To win the trust of the people, the Maoists desperately need to improve their conduct.

Dwaipayan Regmi,