LETTERS: Nepalese fantasy

Nepali lives, industries and development projects will continue to face shortages and efficiency hurdles that will stymie our progress. Sometimes it is no electricity, sometimes no water, no roads, at times no labourers, no cement, no petroleum, many times no money and capital that constitute the manifold impediments.

Meanwhile our traders and agents continue to fantasize and dream of their individual empires or group of companies just like a puny lizard trying in vain to own a huge Nepali earthen water container. This is sadly more evident now in the cement industry: 48 factories producing only 8 million metric tonnes against hydro projects’ demand of 200 million metric tonnes “Cement shortages hits hydel projects” (THT, September 24, Page 1), and editorial “Cement shortage” (THT, September 25, Page 8). The demand supply gap is as wide as distance between our Earth and Jupiter. The opportunity is mouth watering to say the least. But it is beyond our capacity to tap it. So let us invite the whole world to invest in cement here. What about the Nigerian giant Dangote which was presumed to have been interested in investing US$1bn in cement production in the country? Have they started producing cement? How about asking Indians to build huge plants in Madhes Pradesh? Or, how about reviving state-owned Himal, Hetauda and Udayapur factories? As the Kathmandu Valley is already enveloped by thick dust cloud, Himal’s contribution to pollution should not be of much concern, if ever it is revived again. The shortfall in cement supply as against demand by 8 to 200 million metric tonnes shows that Nepalese traders are incapable of living up to the opportunities. Similarly, our tourism honchos fantasize about 2.5 million tourists, but if they really swarm here we would witness a huge pandemonium of unprecedented scale. We are simply not capable for big volume business. I like to close it with just two of my experiences to prove my point. When we, a group of 15 people, entered a jungle lodge in Chitwan, the staffed darted to the kitchen shouting ‘manche aayo’. It seemed they had not seen 15 people in a long time.

Manohar Shrestha , Kathmandu


I am writing this piece to underscore the fact that the way how we have been celebrating our grand festival in these years is totally different from how our ancestors used to celebrate it. The world is so dynamic everyone is busy in their lives. People have less time to contemplate the true value of what it means to celebrate a festival of this beautiful sort. In these days people have been pompously and ostentatiously concerned about how to celebrate a festival. For instance gambling is another fatal trend which is ruining the culture. Drinking and gambling out of one’s limit is very wicked and it may not help to carry the spirit of a festival in the first place.

Shiva Neupane, Melbourn