National interests:

A Baral, in his letter “Diplomatic Appointment” (THT, Nov. 21), has rightly stated that the nation’s interest is far greater than that of any party. The eight parties should put national interests above their partisan interests during the formation of an interim government. The Jana Andolan II also expected the political leaders to learn from their mistakes and work together for common goals, such as national development. In promoting good governance, it is also important that key appointments, such as high-level diplomatic and bureaucratic ones, are subjected to parliamentary vetting. Instead of making haste in filling the current vacancies, the government should weigh its options and choose the best candidates.

N B Katuwal, via e-mail

Not there yet :

Undoubtedly, all Nepalis are proud of the recent peace accord between the SPA government and the CPN-Maoist. But there is an element of scepticism. I was a little boy when the 1990 pro-democracy movement became successful. But now, I have come to understand the full importance of that movement. Then, it now seems, it was too early for the people to celebrate their victory, as there were some serious flaws somewhere in the process. Everybody wanted a piece of the pie — the communists, the monarch and the Congress. We have paid the ultimate price with nearly 15,000 lives. Now that the Nepalis have made clear what they want, the responsibility of fulfiling the people’s wish rests with the SPA and the Maoists. The Maoists should be realistic and strengthen peace and democracy. Utopian dreams would not deliver the goods. It is time for the Nepalis to move from celebrations to putting pressure on the Maoists and the government to implement the peace accord faithfully without any delay.

Jishnu Neupane, USA

Go organic:

It is great to learn that the Asian Development Bank is helping agriculture in eastern Nepal through a grant of $18 million. Indeed, without the development of this sector, the country cannot prosper as more than 80 per cent Nepalis derive their livelihood from agriculture. But agriculturalists should refrain from using dangerous chemical fertilisers and pesticides, which cause considerable damage to the environment, the ecosystem and the human population. They should rather focus on organic farming as it holds good prospects for Nepal, with its diverse climatic and geographical conditions. The government and international donors should play a leading role in this. We owe it to our future generations to keep our environment safe and clean.

Ramesh Nath Sharma, executive chairman, SADP-Nepal, Pokhara

Superstition :

Many localities in Pokhara are in the grip of rumours that witches have been spotted in the city. As a result, people are painting their homes with religious symbols in an attempt to ward off the evil spirits. Such rumours have swayed Nepalis in one place or the other from time to time. I cannot understand how people of the 21st century can allow such superstitions influence them.

Anjan Gurung, Pokhara