Nepal | June 04, 2020

If a Nepali were to be picked for Nobel Prize…


The Himalayan Times
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Nepali people for Nobel Prize

Illustration: Ratna Sagar Shrestha/ THT

Nepali poet laureate Madhav Prasad Ghimire, who is also a living legend in the field of Nepali Literature, must receive Nobel Prize. Nepali people still recite his poems. His poetry, which is about patriotism and national unity, still touch our hearts. I still remember those childhood days when we used to mug up his poems and sing in a tune among friends hailing our ancestors for their bravery.

In the present context where the country is on the verge of division on the basis of caste, religion, culture, ethnicity, his powerful words urging for national unity is important as it is clear that without national unity among people of all walks of life, mission of national prosperity cannot be accomplished. In this situation, his words convey the message of bonding and unity among Nepalis maintaining brotherhood. Many of his poems have music in them which is why they have been converted into songs. And these too illustrate the glorious triumph of our ancestors which makes us proud till today. Being one of his fans, I regard Ghimire as the deserving personality for the Nobel Prize in the field of Literature from Nepal.

— Sandesh

I would choose Ani Choying Drolma for the Nobel, who has recently been hailed as “first rock star” Buddhist nun from Nepal. Since she is a nun, she has been able to work hard to spread the message of peace within and outside Nepal alongside her concerts around the world. She rose to fame with her song Phool Ko Aankha Ma which still touches my heart. What we can say for certain that she is a preacher as well as a messenger of peace who wants violence to come to an end. Hence, she should be awarded with Nobel Prize for Peace just like the Dalai Lama.

— Pratik Shrestha, Buddhanagar, Baneshwor

There are many great personalities in Nepal who deserve to be Nobel laureates based on their contributions for maintaining peace and prosperity in society and the nation. But I think CNN Hero of 2010 Anuradha Koirala would be a worthy choice as a Nobel Prize Winner. She is the Founder of Maiti Nepal, an organisation which has rescued many girls and women from brothels and from being trafficked into the flesh trade. She and her organisation have been working endlessly to end one of the major problems prevalent in South Asia — human trafficking. I think nobody would be surprised if she won the Nobel Peace Prize for her contributions. Girl trafficking is a major problem in Nepal and she and her organisation have been successful to rescue and rehabilitate more than 12,000 women and girls. She has provided help and support to many victims of such trafficking and has helped raise awareness against it. She is an important figure in Nepal as she has been the saviour for many families and individuals.

She has also been a source of inspiration for many people to work and contribute towards society. So I think that Koirala can easily be chosen as a Nobel laureate from Nepal.

— Tanishq Thapa, Kathmandu, Nepal

Till now no one from our country has done such great work as to receive a Nobel Prize. But I would choose our Mahakabi Laxmi Prasad Devkota for the prestigious prize. He has written many poems, novels, short novels and essays in the Nepali language. His skill in writing words in various styles and technique is outstanding. He has raised Nepali literature to a different height. I feel that if he was born in a European country, then he would have been renowned all over the world, even more than William Shakespeare. His publications are limited only to Nepal and so he is not known to the rest of the world. Though his financial condition was not good, it didn’t stop him from making contribution to Nepali literature. Some of his works are still famous among people and they love to read them. His saying from MunaMadan Maanish Thulo Dilale Huncha Jatale Hundaina — is filled with humanitarian feeling which serves for the betterment of society. We can’t think of Nepali literature without him. So he deserves the award as he dedicated all his life for the betterment and uplift of the Nepali literature.

— Saroj

Author Jamak Kumari Ghimire is a deserving candidate for the Nobel Prize from Nepal in literature. This is due to her dedication towards writing. She is gifted with an extraordinary thought process. She has many beautiful ideas in terms of writing her short stories, poems, songs, essays et cetera. Each of us can get inspired from her works.

On the contrary, while I was researching for this write-up I was amazed by her woeful life. She has been doing all kinds of works with the help of her legs. Besides this, she even eats and brushes her teeth with the help of her legs. What a hard life! No one can imagine how her life is when it comes to how much she goes through in her life. But, at the same time let us not forget about her creativity and her writing gift.

Some of her works are the paradigms for the Nepali literature fraternity such as Sankalpa (Vow), Aafnai Chita Agni Shikhatira (Own’s Funeral Pyre Towards the Fire Apex), Manchhe Bhitraka Yoddaharu (Warriors inside Humans), Quaati, among others. And we all know about her very famous book titled Jiwan Kanda Ki Phul (Is Life a Thorn or Flower). This book of hers is an example of her writing skill and talent. That’s the reason why she was awarded the Madan Puraskar in 2067 BS.

Considering all her dedication and awards she has achieved till date, I can say that she is also undoubtedly best candidate for the Nobel Prize in literature from our country.

— Saroj Wagle, Dumarwana, Bara

If I were given a chance to choose one Nepali personality as a Nobel laureate, it would be Anuradha Koirala for her contributions towards ending girl trafficking or explicitly sex trafficking in Nepal. She has been one of the most active social workers of Nepal and she has devoted her life to serve the children and women who are victims of different anti-social activities. Koirala is the founder of Maiti Nepal, which is a non-profit organisation that provides shelter, and more importantly, relief to the women and young girls who have been victims of sexual exploitation. Maiti Nepal consists of different prevention homes, transit homes and hospices which facilitates and motivates the victims until they are able to stand for themselves. Her organisation also rescues children, girls and women from brothels of India and many nearby places and provide services to them. Moreover, Maiti Nepal organises awareness programmes on girl trafficking, apprehending traffickers, increasing women empowerment, providing legal support to the victimised families and many more. She, by the means of her organisation, has rescued more than 12,000 women and children and her organisation is currently helping 1,000 children to go to school every day. We have seen many social workers like Anuradha Dijju who have received Nobel Prize for their profound social work in the past. So, there’s no doubt that she should receive the Nobel Peace Prize from Nepal if I were the one to choose.

— Suhishan Bhandari

If I get a chance to give the Nobel Prize to one Nepali personality, he would be Laxmi Prasad Devkota for sure. He is a legend and has been honoured with the title of Mahakabi (The Greatest Poet) in Nepali literature. Devkota contributed to Nepali literature by starting a modern Nepali language and Romantic Movement in the country. He started using innovative language which had never been used before. The way he has written his works touches everyone’s heart. He has contributed in almost all genres of Nepali literature. Some of the famous works of Devkota are MunaMadan, Kunjini, and Shakuntala. MunaMadan was also made into a movie and was sent as an official entry from Nepal to Oscars. It has some of the best lines: A Kshatriya touches your feet not with hatred but with love. Great is a man with a great heart; not with great caste, creed, or by birth.

Devkota had the capacity to compose long epics and poems with literary complexity and philosophical concentration in very short period of time. In a mere three months he wrote Shakuntala, his first epic poem, and also the first Mahakavya. Shakuntala demonstrates Devkota’s mastery of the Sanskrit metre and diction, which he incorporated heavily while working primarily in Nepali.

— Santosh Aryal, Helsinki, Finland

Nobel Prize is awarded for outstanding contributions in the fields of Chemistry, Economics, Physics, Peace and Literature. In the context of Nepal, we don’t have such famous contributors in the above mentioned fields with literature being an exception. When it comes to literature, we do have some really talented writers in Nepal. Among them, my favourite is Laxmi Prasad Devkota. Sad that he is no more with us, but if I had the opportunity to choose anyone for the Nobel Prize, it would be him.

Out of all his creations, the first one that I read was his essay, Ke Nepal Sano Chaa. And I was speechless, how beautifully and passionately he has expressed national sentiments! It touched me and gave me goosebumps. The second one that I read was MunaMadan; it was simple yet beautiful. In the form of poetry, it was like a flowing river and a falling cascade.

His poems focusing on mundane elements of the human and natural world and his profound faith in humanity — his creations are just powerful. His selection of words, phrases, sentences — all are revolutionary, touching and precious. He surely deserves the Nobel Prize.

— Smriti Dahal, Australia

Bob Dylan’s win of the Nobel Prize in Literature has proved that the celebration of talent need not be restricted to one’s field of specialisation. An enigmatic singer, songwriter, painter par excellence, Dylan was more than a seminal musical artist who down the years influenced many musical acts and bands. He continues to enjoy a place in America and indeed the human history as an exemplary torchbearer of human rebellion against state’s autocratic stifling of democratic values under any pretext including nationalism. His decoration with Noble Prize in Literature has opened doors for other talented artists like Bob Marley, who penned equally powerful poetic lyrics and turned them into reggae rendition to enthrall, empower and dignify several generations of coloured people. As Oscar and Grammy winners have shown, you need not keep on producing one hit after another to bag the highest awards. Sometimes one work is enough for an award.

If I had to choose one for Noble Literature award it would be the artist who penned the lyric Ma Mare Pani Mero Desh Bachirahos. This is the most powerful lyric to emerge in Nepali musical landscape spanning seven decades or more. Sung by Shiva Shanker Manandhar, it was penned by Prem Prakash Malla and it is my nod for the literary achievement.

— Manohar Shrestha, Kathmandu

This is a profound topic. If I were given a chance to choose one Nepal personality for a Nobel Prize in any area, I would choose Uttam Sanjel — Founder of Samata Sikshya Niketan (Bamboo School). He tried out his career in the Indian film industry before starting this school. He shot 10 episodes for a serial. When it was not approved by the channel, he returned to Nepal. In Mumbai, he saw many urchins begging money on the streets. This scenario hurt him and he decided to become a real hero rather than a film hero.

In 2001, he set up a bamboo school in Kathmandu based in Jorpati. But now this school has expanded to 42 districts across the nation with 38,000 pupils. This school charges only Rs 100 per month to the students of all levels.

During the Maoist insurgency, many people left their hometowns and came to Capital for work, especially people from the marginalised and low-income families. These families, who were not able to send their children to school, started sending their children to Jorpati-based Samata School for quality education. Samata is the school for daughters, and poor and innocent children. He has aimed to bridge the gap between the so-called well-known private schools and public institutions.

Once I got the opportunity to work in the Pokhara-based Samata Sikshya Niketan where I got to meet Uttam Sanjel Sir. He was very simple who wore simple attire and was in simple slippers. To the best of my knowledge, he is very simple and a down-to-earth man. He has provided quality education to many poor children who are deprived of quality education. He has also worked to address child rights in Nepal like Kailash Satayarthi and Malala Yousafzai.

— Abhishek Jung Kunwar, Dhikur Pokhari VDC-1, Kaski

Nobel Prize is one of the most prestigious awards in the world. It honours personalities from a wide range of fields and people working in diverse areas. Selecting Bob Dylan as the Nobel Laureate in Literature is digestible and I think Noble Prize has extended its boundaries to cover diverse areas by awarding Dylan.

There are different personalities in Nepal who deserves Nobel Prize. If I could choose a Nepali personality for a Nobel Prize, it would be late prime minister Girija Prasad Koirala. His vision and ingenuity to dilute the then rival force — Maoists — can be considered a pivotal point for Ganatantra in Nepal. His vision and approach has helped transfer Nepal into a federal inclusive republic country.

— Raj Pokhrel

In our country, many personalities deserve the Nobel Prize in their respective fields. There is one person in my mind who really deserves Nobel Prize in the field of Literature and she is Sudha Tripathi. She has written so many poems, essays, and plays. She is a nature lover and she always shows her great affection towards nature in her writings. Some of her writings are so heart-touching that I can’t help but get emotional. Her writing flows like a river of moral lessons and allows readers to collect it. She still has not discontinued her writing and winning the hearts of her readers. So, with great respect and honour, I really think she is the one who deserves a Nobel Prize for her amazing contribution in the field of literature.

— Adarsh Gupta, Birgunj-13

I pick late Tenzing Norgay (Namgyal Wangdi) for the Nobel Prize for his monumental contributions towards humanity, supporting human free spirit, peace and spirituality in the world. Tenzing was not only a great mountaineer and brought glory to Nepal as well as entire South Asia for being one of the first two individuals to conquer Mt Everest in 1953 along with Sir with Edmund Hillary, he was also a great humanitarian who worked all his life to promote sports, peace and community services. His enduring spirit encouraged millions across the globe to face life boldly with dignity; and changed the concept of adventure mountaineering forever. The famous Time magazine placed Tenzing as one of the Top 100 most influential minds of the world in the 20th Century.

The other name that comes to mind is that of Manisha Koirala, an elegant actress, social worker and activist for her monumental contributions to the film industry of South Asia; and for promoting peace and community spirit among the people of the region. Both these two individuals have a huge positive influence on countless fans and followers across Nepal and India; across the entire South Asia and the globe and are well deserved candidates for the Noble Peace Prize.

— Saikat Kumar Basu

I know the value of Nobel Prize. It is rewarded to special personalities who have done something great in the fields of science, literature, philosophy and so on. And if I have to choose someone who deserves the Nobel Prize from Nepal, then I want to mention my father for it. My father may not be famous in the eyes of people but he is my super cool dad. He is my superhero. He is generous and kind to everyone. Everyone likes him. He has donated a lot for the construction of school. He is an engineer by profession. He is not rich but has done more for others than for himself.

— Anonymous

A version of this article appears in print on October 23, 2016 of The Himalayan Times.

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