A high level committee formed under Vice-chairman of the National Planning Commission (NPC) Min Bahadur Shrestha on Monday submitted its report to the Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal stating that Nepal itself could construct the Nijgadh-Kathmandu fast track. full story »
Philippine town officials say at least 14 people, most of them college students on a camping trip, were killed when their rented bus lost its brakes on a downhill road and slammed into a post. full story »
Police on Friday arrested an operator of the Chandika International Education Consultancy for swindling people under the pretext of sending them abroad for foreign employment, Nepal Police said. full story »
India has expressed interest to link Kathmandu with two Indian cities, New Delhi and Kolkata, using direct railway lines in a bid to strengthen cross-border connectivity and facilitate movement of people between the two countries. full story »
Seven months into the fiscal year, capital expenditure in Chitwan and Parsa districts remains low as various government agencies have not asked for their budget allocations from the District Treasury Office. full story »
The Development Committee of Legislative Parliament on Sunday directed the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport (MoPIT) to disburse the amount allocated to the Nepal Army (NA) in the current fiscal year for the construction of road projects within 15 days. full story »
"The Lego Batman Movie" is dominating the North American box office with an estimated $44 million this President's Day weekend -- nearly matching the combined haul of "Fifty Shades Darker" and "The Great Wall." full story »
The Nepal Congress and the CPN (Maoist Center) have agreed to announce the election dates for local level elections in the next Cabinet meeting, taking into account the constitutional requirement that local, provincial, and federal level elections must be held by 21 January 2018. full story »
Eight countries have joined an initiative to raise millions of dollars to replace shortfalls caused by President Donald Trump's ban on U.S.-funded groups around the world providing information on abortion, Sweden's deputy prime minister said. full story »
Consuming e-cigarettes is far safer and less toxic than smoking conventional tobacco cigarettes, according to the findings of a study analysing levels of dangerous and cancer-causing substances in the body. full story »
Babies whose mothers do not take adequate Vitamin A nutrients during their pregnancy may be at an increased risk of developing Alzheimer's disease, even from the womb or just after birth, researchers have warned. full story »
Vitamin D pills 'could stop colds or flu'
‘Why munching sounds can make me angry’
Eight countries sign up to counter Trump's global anti-abortion move
Treating complex phobias
Getting specific about dizziness
Study of cancer-causing toxins finds e-cigs much safer than smoking
Maternal Vitamin A deficiency may up Alzheimer's risk in babies
The flight landed in Kathmandu on November 25, 1:00 am. I had come to Nepal to conduct my psychology research. I looked forward to meeting all kinds of people and learning about their inside-world. full story »
Now that rebuilding houses is finally under way, there’s much the NRA should focus on
After several complications and delays, the National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) started distributing the second tranche of funds for building homes damaged or destroyed by the earthquakes last month.
It appears that the process is moving relatively smoothly. Many people who had completed building a section of their houses using the first tranche of funds, consisting of Rs50,000 per family, had been facing difficulties.
Now that they have received the second tranche consisting of Rs150,000, they have been able to continue rebuilding their houses. Evidence shows that most people rebuilding their houses are doing so in line with the NRA guidelines. We hope that this will make their homes more resistant to earthquakes that might strike in the future.
Many people with damaged or destroyed houses did not wait for government funds to start rebuilding their houses. They used their own resources to do so. Thousands of people have by now completed rebuilding their homes. Such people were worried that the government would not compensate them for their loss.
However, the government has now decided to make a lump sum payment of Rs300,000 to each family that rebuilt their homes without waiting for government assistance.
This is a positive development. According to NRA estimates, this includes more than 40,000 households.
Had the government decided not to compensate such households, it would have been as though people were being penalised for taking the initiative and rebuilding their own homes without immediate earthquake assistance.
This would have been manifestly unfair. The lump sum payment will offer significant relief to such families, and enable them to repay loans or use the funds in ways that will allow them to overcome the devastating effects of the earthquakes.
Now that the process of rebuilding houses is well underway, it is time for the NRA to focus on other aspects of post-earthquake reconstruction. So far it has appeared that rebuilding damaged buildings is the only task of the NRA.
But the effects of the earthquakes have been manifold, as documents from the NRA and the National Planning Commission themselves attest.
Thousands of people remain socially and economically vulnerable even though they might now have homes.
Thousands have fallen into debt traps, for example. Many lost agricultural stocks and implements in the earthquake, and have found it difficult to resume activities that would enable them to generate a living.
Education and health services have recovered substantially, but they still need additional attention.
Many earthquake victims feel that the government is unresponsive to their basic needs and do not know how they can communicate with the authorities.
The government needs to formulate plans and policies that take such aspects into consideration.
It dawned on me the other day while responding to the questions of a female journalist and my erstwhile student of literature that the Nepali state is reaching a climactic moment in its decision-making process, full story »