Everest highway:

This is in response to the letter “Everest road” (THT, June 22) regarding China’s building of a highway on the side of Mt. Everest. We need to keep in mind that road construction involves

destructive activities like blasting which might cause the snow to melt. Flora and fauna in the region will also be greatly endangered. If the Chinese are allowed to do as they wish this time, we will risk losing our say on issues concerning Everest in the future as well. Moreover, the construction of Everest highway will affect our national economy as people will opt for cheap road travel through the highway on the Tibetan side. Hence, Nepal stands to lose more than it can gain if China goes ahead with the project.

Kiran Shrestha, via e-mail

Their choice:

There has been a heated national debate on third-country settlement for the Bhutanese refugees. Those who are against this option should respect the sentiment of the refugees who have been languishing in the camps in eastern Nepal without any ray of hope. No refugee is against repatriation. Indeed, most of them favour resettlement in their country of origin. The so-called leaders should show true leadership by hearing what the refugees have to say rather than by trumpeting their own solutions. The refugee leaders, foreign countries and international organisations should honour the genuine will of the refugees.

Ram Rai, via e-mail

Free press:

Apropos of the halt to the publication of Nepal Samacharpatra and Mahanagar Dainik for

several days by a trade union close to the Maoists, I wonder what will happen to free press if and when the Maoists take full control of the government in the future. Today, it happened to two vernacular dailies, tomorrow it might be all the newspapers that do not toe the Maoist line.

Preeti Koirala, MN, USA

Water woes:

Many Tarai districts have been hit hard by water-borne diseases like cholera and diarrhoea.

Contaminated drinking water is the main culprit. Even though various awareness programmes are being held to inform people about the hazards of contaminated water, most people chose to ignore them. The awareness drive will be useless if people cannot be convinced.

Abijit Sharma, Dhapasi

Online ties:

I disagree with Bidhi Dhital’s ideas expressed in her Midway “‘Virtual’ reality” (THT, June 22). Her claim that online relationships are not genuine is simply unsubstantiated. Dhital mentions the story of one of her friends being tricked by a fraud online. But for every story of failure, there is one of success. For instance, I met my wife, a German native, online. We are now happily married. Dhital makes too broad a generalisation relying on just a handful of examples.

Sabin Dhungel, via e-mail

Drug abuse:

I was very happy to see actors Rajesh Hamal and Bipana Thapa nominated as goodwill ambassadors for the campaign against drug abuse. I hope they play a significant role in helping control drug abuse among the youth.

Shiva Neupane, via e-mail