Saving newborns: Nepal women volunteers brave terrain, taboos

NEPAL-HEALTH-INFANTS-WOMENBADALAMJI (NEPAL): On a wet and windy morning, Nepalese housewife Bhumisara Upadhyay (photo) is out visiting pregnant women, on a mission to slash newborn deaths in the Himalayan nation with a simple tube of gel.

Upadhyay is among thousands of volunteers at the front line of a campaign that has dramatically cut neonatal mortality in a country where nearly two-thirds of babies are born at home. Continue reading

Dalai Lama returning to China?

dalailamaLHASA: China’s government in Tibet claims that the Dalai Lama is in talks with Beijing through “personal envoys”, but the talks are only about the possibility of his return to Tibet.

Wu Yingjie, the Deputy Secretary of the Communist Party Committee for Tibet, told a group of Indian journalists in Lhasa on Sunday that the talks with the Dalai were “ongoing and always smooth, but we are discussing only his future, not Tibet’s.” Continue reading

1950 India-Nepal treaty: Modi is open to full review

modi-koiralaCOMMENT, NEW DELHI: The intimacy and intensity of the relationship between the people of Nepal and India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi suggested in his speech to the Constituent Assembly in Kathmandu, can’t be measured by “pieces of paper” signed by the governments of the two countries.

The PM’s reference to “pieces of paper” was not a rhetorical device. It referred to the 1950 “India-Nepal Treaty of Peace and Friendship” between the two governments, which is supposed to codify the special relationship between the two countries. Continue reading

Modi wows Nepali hearts

modihinduKATHMANDU: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech in Parliament has won millions of Nepali hearts, said local daily, eKantipur, on Monday.

Modi’s address (video below) was the first by a foreign head of state/government to Nepal’s parliament after 1990 and he “won millions of Nepali hearts with his speech that he began in Nepali and continued in Hindi later”. Continue reading

Will Modi’s Nepal visit see an upswing in ‘do-able’ issues?

modiNEPAL-INDIACOMMENT NEW DELHI: Although India and Nepal have shared cordial and friendly ties without much tensions, there was a perception in Kathmandu that New Delhi no longer took the Himalayan country seriously.

According to many observers in Nepal, this was evident from the one-way, high-level political visits from the Nepalese side during the last decade, which mostly went unreciprocated from the Indian side. Continue reading