THT 10 YEARS AGO: Ties with US improving, says Prachanda

Kathmandu, November 22, 2007

Maoist chairman Prachanda said today that his party’s relations with the US government had become “better” since former US president Jimmy Carter’s visit to Nepal in June.

“We have established informal communication with the US government in one or the other ways. We do not have bitter relations with the US administration as they were before Carter’s visit,” Prachanda told mediapersons after his 60-minute meeting with Nobel laureate Carter at Hotel Soalttee this evening.

In June, the former US president had said during a press conference that he would recommend the Bush administration to establish relations with the Nepali Maoists. “US Embassy’s treatment of Maoists in recent days indicates that there has been improvement in our relations with the US administration,” said Prachanda, accompanied by his deputy, Dr Baburam Bhattarai. “We assured Carter that we are not in favour of breaking the ongoing peace process,” he said. Prachanda said he apprised Carter that the “peace process was more important” than the CA polls, which could not be held without addressing some of the “sensitive issues” such as the effective management of cantonments, relief assistance to the martyrs’ families and settling the cases of disappearance.

Prachanda said Carter raised doubt that the Maoists would not take part in election even if the country was declared a republic and polls were held on proportional basis. “We reminded him that our party had taken part in the parliamentary and local elections before we waged the People’s War.

Produce cooking gas at home!

Kathmandu, November 22, 2007

Here’s good news for all of us, who have been facing gas shortage and sewerage disposal problems. These problems can be solved at a cost of Rs 20,000.

By installing a small plant on your rooftop or backyard, you can get rid of kitchen and toilet waste. On top of it, cooking gas will be available at your kitchen round the clock for free, concludes a recent experiment, supported by the National Academy of Science and Technology (NAST).

Hari Prasad Pandey, a sanitation engineer at the Department of Water Supply and Sewerage in Jhapa, worked out this solution after conducting an 18-month-long experiment. He has built a domestic plant, which converts kitchen waste and human waste into cooking gas. “You can run a gas stove for around 90 minutes per day out of the faeces and urine of two persons as well as kitchen waste you dump in the plant daily. It means you save at least Rs 400 per month,” he told The Himalayan Times, adding that there will be no foul-smell or explosion.

A kitchen waste inlet, part of the plant, is linked to the outlet of the toilet. Both the lines feed a 1,100-litre reactor tank and 300-litre pressure tank, which have an effluent outlet.