Focus on real issues :

Ganga Thapa, in his article “Opportunities and dangers” (THT, Jan 11), seems to have his finger on the pulse of the people. Policies should reflect the people’s aspirations rather than the interests of what Thapa calls “the Iron Triangle of politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen”. It will not be possible to build a New Nepal until the rights of all stakeholders are secured, whether they are small or large groups. It is also necessary to give due importance to pressing issues such as education, employment, security, transparency and good governance.

Vik Lama, via e-mail


It is pathetic that Bhakta Bahadur Koirala, the chairman of the disbanded RCCC, now considers it a “mistake” on his part to have looked into the distribution of Rs. 4.1 million of Prime Minister’s Relief Fund on the grounds of it being a cabinet decision (“No idea about distribution of funds:

Ex-RCCC chief”,THT, Jan 10). Legal technicalities apart, it was one of the most important cases probed by the royal body as it exposed how low our politicians could stoop for money even if it meant robbing a fund made up of donations from common citizens and meant for the relief of people in distress: the victims of floods, fire, earthquake, landslides and drought. The beneficiaries included not only unscrupulous faces of Nepali politics but also those with good educational backgrounds. The challenge for any well-meaning government is to frame rules that would make such stealing impossible.

Bihari Krishna Shrestha, Green Block, Patan

Bad idea:

The editorial “Additional risk” (THT, Jan 10) has drawn my attention. It is a bad idea to test all patients seeking any kind of surgery for HIV/AIDS. First of all, HIV tests are not available at all places and no test is foolproof. The currently available tests cannot detect HIV infection during the window period when the patient is likely to be more infectious. Furthermore, universal precautions are required to prevent transmission of Hepatitis B — which is even more infectious than HIV — and other infections. Thus, nothing can be gained by HIV/AIDS testing alone. On the contrary, it can cause harm by creating a false sense of security and by subjecting the positive patients to discrimination and abuse of human rights, including refusal of treatment. What is required is application of universal precautions not only against HIV/AIDS but against all communicable diseases. This also requires training and essential equipment for the healthcare providers.

Dr Purushottam N. Shrestha, Kathmandu


My heart goes out to the families of the two children killed in a vehicular accident in Satdobato “Locals stage protests after truck knocks kids to death” (THT, Jan 8). I am astounded at the recklessness of motorcyclists weaving in and out of traffic, cutting other motorists off, nicely protected by their helmets but with multiple school age children on board without any protection at all. The recklessness perhaps is acceptable when they are driving alone but not while children are on board. It is noteworthy that the driver was not killed. I am sure his helmet played some role in his survival.

Scott E. Justice, Kathmandu