Category Archives: Nepali Society

Neutralize Hindu Fundamentalism in Nepal

Strong action should be taken against those who are trying to destabilize Nepali society by exploiting the religious sentiment

As Nepal is heading toward democratic transition, religious fundamentalists and royalists are trying to destabilize the country under the cover of defending Hinduism. These are the people who were kicked out of the power by April’s popular Peoples’ Movement. They were desperately looking for an opportunity to fight back. They found one in the parliament’s historic proclamation that declared Nepal, the world’s only Hindu kingdom, a secular state. Continue reading Neutralize Hindu Fundamentalism in Nepal

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Nepal as a Secular State: All Religions Equal

Welcome to the secular Nepal where being Nepali is the true religion. Now extremists should stop politicizing religion.

By Deepak Adhikari

Nepal became another secular state at a time when fundamentalism is growing in different parts of the planet. But, this oldest nation state of South Asia has a history of harmony that is rarely found in the world. Christians in neighboring India decode Brown’s Da Vinci Code as blasphemous. Srilanka is ravaged by communal violence. Minority Hindus and Christians are suppressed in Pakistan. But Nepal has remain a safe haven for people of different faiths. Continue reading Nepal as a Secular State: All Religions Equal

Meanwhile Maoist Comrades Continue Extortion, Looting and Beating

Army Press Release

They aren’t killing people because they have officially declared ceasefire for three months. But Maoist comrades aren’t keeping quite, at least according to the Royal Nepal Army. RNA was fighting with the Maoists until last month’s popular movement forced autocratic king to give up the power to people. Now both sides are observing ceasefire but it has been widely believed that rebels are doing unfair activities like extorting money, kidnapping unarmed people and looting.

Here in this blog, UWB presents a digitized avatar of a copy of today’s press release issued by the RNA. The only difference between this release and the ones that RNA used to issued before the April Revolution is that the word ‘terrorists’ have been replaced by ‘Maoists’. Also another missing element is the point that talked about how many people were killed in a clash.

For those who find it difficult to read the text (in Nepal) here is a quick translation: Continue reading Meanwhile Maoist Comrades Continue Extortion, Looting and Beating

Celebrating Holi, the Festival of Color

Celebrating Holi, the festival of Color

Holi in Nepal has become a new game of egoism between boys and girls. Yes, sexual appeal is there.

Pics by Bikash Karki
Words by DW

People of Nepal with Hindu religion celebrated Holi or the Fagu Purnima, the festival of color (and these days dirty water as well) with full enthusiasm. People in Kathmandu enjoyed the festival totally forgetting that Comrade Maoists are blocking them inside the valley from today. Yes there something historical background behind this festival but in the modern days, throwing colors and colored water has become a kind of “sex-war”, if I can use this term here, between the young folks. I could see boys and girls targeting the water-filled balloon each other. Continue reading Celebrating Holi, the Festival of Color

Where is the Buddha Boy?

Sudden disappearance of Nepal’s ‘Little Buddha’ triggers wild speculations.

So, the Buddha Boy has left the meditation venue. Was that a voluntary decision or the 16-year-old ‘Little Buddha’ was forced to end his meditation? Just like the contradictory views about Ram Bahadur Bomjam’s ‘eating habit’, conflicting guesses about his ‘sudden’ departure from the jungle of Ratanpur Village of Bara District are emerging. Why he left? Everyone in the streets of Kathmandu who was aware of the news and whom I met today was asking this question. Over the months, Ram Bahadur has become the constant source of news and topic for tea-talks in Nepali society. So the latest development has become one of the most sensational news of the recent years in Nepal (and the development has already made headlines around the world). Posters of Ram Bahadur have been widely distributed in Nepal depicting him as a larger than life figure as if he was a REAL Buddha. In a society where there are hundreds of thousands of people firmly believe in the “divine power” of Sai Baba, an Indian personality, it is no surprise that Ram Bahadur Bomjam found a warm and convincing place in peoples’ heart. Continue reading Where is the Buddha Boy?

Shadhus of Shivaratri…Farewell

Shadhus of Shivaratri celebrated the festival. But life will not be easy in Pashupati Nath all the time. So they have to leave with thier belongings. A photo blog by Shruti Shrestha

Shadhus Get Shivaratri Farewell
They came, they celebrated (and puffed) and they are leaving the Pashupati Nath Temple. Shadhus who came Kathmandu for Shivaratri festival leave the temple and head back to their original destination. All pics except the last four by Shruti Shrestha Continue reading Shadhus of Shivaratri…Farewell

Narayan Wagle Wins Madan Puraskar

By Dinesh Wagle on August 31st, 2005 in Wagle Street Journal

Debut novel Palpasa Cafe has created history in Nepali book industry by selling out 5 thousands copies in a month.

As a critic recently noted, Narayan’s Wagle’s novel Palpasa Cafe is filled with many coincidences. The meeting between Drishya and Palpasa (two main characters) in Goa, India is a coincidence. They again meet in Kathmandu in a coincidence. And they encounter in a bus while returning from their respective tours of Nepali villages (another coincidence). Now, here are some other milestones, from the real world, that might also be taken as coincidences.

This debut novel of journalist Wagle recently created history in Nepali book industry by selling out 5 thousand copies within the first month of publication. And today Madan Puraskar Guthi (Madan Prize Trust) declared that Wagle, 37, has won this year’s Madan Purasker, Nepali literary world’s most prestigious prize, for Palpasa Café. (The same trust has also said that Phanindra Raj Khetala, 84, has been awarded with this year’s Jagadamba-Shree prize for his contribution in Nepali language and literature.) Both titles command Rs. 2 lakhs each. And here is yet another coincidence: The trust had decided to increase the prize amount by one hundred percent since this year on the occasion of the golden jubilee of the Madan Puraskar.

“I am elated,” said Wagle, 37, editor of Kantipur, Nepal’s largest circulating daily paper. “A journalist’s new style and approach has been awarded with a prestigious prize.” Wagle’s Cafe depicts the life and time of war-trodden Nepali society with is trademark writing style that has already been popular as Coffee Guff, his weekly apolitical column in Kosilee, Kantipur’s weekly supplement. “I have experienced that if a writer gets satisfaction from his creation, readers will get satisfaction too.”

Related Blogs:
1.Narayan Wagle: A Novelist Is Born With Palpasa Cafe
2. Wagle Guff: Coffee, Cafe and Palpasa
3. Palpasa Cafe Hits Bookstores

33 Responses to “Narayan Wagle Wins Madan Puraskar”

sghimire Says:
September 1st, 2005 at 12:02 am

I am very happy to hear that Narayan Wagle’s Palpasa Cafe won the Madan Puraskar .

neutralman Says:
September 1st, 2005 at 7:39 am

Congratulations to Wagle ji. This is nothing against him.

But I am dismayed Madan Guthi was in such a haste to give away madan Prize to Palpasa Cafe. Have they read the book yet? Palpasa Cafe is a mediocre novel with a media success due exclusively to kantipur company limited. I have seen praises for it, but you’ll realise it’s due to the fact that these praisers haven’t read any other book. The literary merit is only about 2/10. Madan Prize, I thought would be given to those with high literary value; not those with onlu popular success. [icd]

The sheer fact that Madan Prize grabbed this book only after a few days of release (thanks God, it was not before the release!!) explains that the Chakari trend has been reversed. Now the Madan Guthi has fallen low enough to seek favors from Kantipur Publications. This is nothing other than a Chakari seeking game. Shame on you Madan Guthi

But I still believe Palpasa Cafe is a good read. A mediocre, good-for-ordinary brains stuff like us. But it won’t come up to the standard that it should get Madan prize.

Well, I may be wrong. Madan Prize’s standard may have plummetted in that case. [icd]

Nothing against Wagle and Kantipur company ltd. Please understand.

Govinda Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 10:56 am
Congratulations to Mr. Wagle!

Though there are lots of coincidences, the message of the novel is loud and clear. Left wing and right wing extremists have together given an incredible amount of pain and despair to common people. I salute Mr. Wagle for his attempt to give justice to the everyday story of contemporary Nepal, which otherwise, would have just become statistics.

Nepali Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 1:06 pm
First of all would like to convey lots of congratulations to Narayan.

Pondering on what neutralman has just said, I just wondered who were the people in selection committee? Does Palpasa Cafe also offers such a remarkable literature value to Nepalese literature for which Madan Puraskar is offered (at least thats what used to mean to me by the name of that award)? Would be nice if the editors of this page could do some extra work in getting opinion from some established renowned independent literaturist (if there are any) on the novel. At least field of literature should be set a side from the Cartelism being developed in every sector in Nepal. Or ?

Once again Cheers for Narayan

ghanshyam khadka,Myagdi Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 1:06 pm
Respected Narayan wagle dai, congratulation u .
I am very happy to hear that palpasa cafe won the Madan Puraskar.

noone Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 3:29 pm
well it’s been long that one ‘lord’ who loved to talk literature has disappeared . i wud like to see wat he has to say over this ! missing him ! and wagle’
s icd are getting denser spoiling the contents of some good appearing contents !

finally, lord r u alive to have any say over this !

noone Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 3:30 pm
sorry comments instead of contents

shyamkarna, dhmbarahi Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 3:48 pm
amazing result.

palpasa cafe was published in 2062 and how could it get madan prize of 2061? wagle had an interaction programme on shrawan 1st this year. his paper kantipur recently too wrote that it was sold within one month of the publication and the publisher and distributor also said same recently. [icd]

Bhuwan Sharma Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 4:52 pm
I would like to join SGhimire in congratulating Narayan Wagle for bagging this year’s Madam Puraskar. At the same time, I would also like to voice my dissent against Neutralman. He says that the book has gone on to become successful because of “Kantipur Company Limited.” Com’on man, you cannot just make a flat statement and castigate an organization. For oneâ??having worked for a number of media houses, hence having the advantage of comparison and contrastâ??I know for sure that Kantipur tries it’s best to live up to it’s reputation of being a fair and a credible organization. Hence, there is no question of it going all out to promote a man at the cost of it’s reputation. In addition, Mr. Neutralman should also take into consideration the history of the man. Mr. Wagle is a man who has time and again proved his mettle. Hece, for me at least, it was nothing new to learn that he has added yet another feather to his cap by trying his luck and proving his capability in another genre.

neutralman Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 5:33 pm
Bhuwan ji,
I don’t have any headache for Wagle ji got the Madan prize. The issue is whether it was a right book for that prize. In my opinion it’s not. It’s only a pop novel. I hope u have read this before u comment on this. The other thing I disagree with you is that Kantipur was of course, in an all out mission to create media frenzy. U can’t deny it. I don’t think any book will need to be advertised like a third class hindi movie on the ad board hosted by Kantipur. I can’t answer why Kantipur does that. I don’t know if Kantipur wants to promote one person keeping its reputation at stake. But there’s nothing wrong doing that. kantipur is a private institute, and it can do that. My say is towards Madan Guthi. There is a hidden motive in giving away Madan Prize to Palpasa Cafe.
Well, Bhuwan ji, please read Palpasa Cafe and come back to put a comment. may be u will agree with me then.

Ram Acharya Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 9:10 pm
First of all my heartfelt congratulations to Narayan WagleyJee! You did a great job and it is just the beginning. Being a journalist you could produce a marvelous piece of treasure for Nepali literature. Nevertheless, it has invoked some doubts and skepticism in some Nepali minds like that of Neutralman. Perhaps, his curiosity why Madan Guthi could choose such a mediocre novel for the one of the superb prizes of the country. It is a considerable thinking. Suppose, it is ‘mediocre novel’ which perhaps does not deserve the prize. Then question arise: Is there any better recent novel for this prize? Perhaps not. The doubt is our skepticism that only hinders our growth. We cannot do better but we never stay behind to argue and doubt. Nevertheless, we are pleased to admit neutralman’s argument because we live in at least ‘mediocre democratic stage’. Were we in communist system neutralman wouldn’t have any rights to express his argument. By this time despite his anonymity he would have been tracked down through the IP address of his computer, and perhaps he would have become hanged! I neednâ??t to mention what if we still had had Oligarchic Rana regime? In any case, whether Madan Guthi did an unfair or a fair job. At least it has recognized a rising talent in Nepali literature. Although literally, Palpasa Café could be brushed further as suggested by one of its reviewers Ajit Baral, it has not missed to exhibit a sharp wit in the contemporary context. This is unique property of the novel and although language is blurred but the message is clear. But one has to agree that brushing is a matter of time. The great German poet Goethe wrote to his friend: â??If had had more time the letter would have been shorter.â??

Of course, we wish more competitive, more creative novels in the coming years. The pity is that our education system has become so hindered and doubtful as Nepalese saying â??Gharko na Ghatkoâ??. Because of lack of sufficient public schools, we need private schools, but perhaps we wouldnâ??t have needed all schools in English medium unless we have good English speaking teachers. There we have a â??big problem of communicationâ?? between the kids and the teachers. The (poorly paid) teachers (who naturally come from public rural schools) cannot speak good English and kids come from still illiterate families à it is beautiful combination. Isnâ??t it? As a consequence, now kids and later young people can neither write creatively (in beautiful language) in English nor in Nepali. The kids from boarding schools have no good Nepali either. On the other hand, the public schools are in Nepali medium but without any teachers, where there is â??no communicationâ?? between the pupils and teachers at all. I even wonder about the language of forthcoming novels in Nepali Language! Let me mention one more praise worthy side of Wagley Jee, despite his background in science, he could compete the literature sector. But it is at the same time very sad part of the education system of humanitarian subjects in our higher-level institutions. It is bitter truth that the quality of humanitarian subject at TU is extremely worthless compared to engineering, medical and agricultural colleges. Do you know why these colleges are still doing good, but the humanitarian faculties are doing bad? The answer is: most of the teachers in these colleges are foreign product. It is a shame on TU humanitarian professors to be the product and producer at the same palce. To run the country we need more humanitarian scientists than the engineers or doctors who have very little say in the national politics or in bureaucracy. Just two top students (scoring >60% and others scoring

Lord Says:

September 1st, 2005 at 11:13 pm
Noone, I am always around you. Just remember me. I used to be a teacher and I am still happy to give lessons to people interested in literature ( but remember criticism is not as easy as reading a cheap novel). And, regarding this experimental novel by Wagle, I agree with CK Lal that Wagle is a very tall man. He sees many things that people normally miss. And, being tall has its own disadvantage (Perhaps u know it).

Mr. Noone criticism is not as easy as chewing a gum. I advice you to read more before you blabber senselessly here.

â??But I still believe Palpasa Cafe is a good read. A mediocre, good-for-ordinary brains stuff like us.â??
Yes Neutralman, you are right. Mediocre people like you cannot comprehend Palpasa Café. So you have to read more books on literature.

Neutralman, you seem to have very little knowledge about markets. Advertisement and publicity are part of modern life. VS Naipaul nearly went mad when the publishers in England refused to publish his works. Reason was that Naipaul was still an unknown quantity. Rest tomorrow, not it is 11 pm ok. Wait for me.

Ram Achary Says:

September 2nd, 2005 at 4:51 am
My attempt is not yet over…

Just two top students (scoring more than 60 percent and others scoring less than 45 percent or failed) in the whole class (if not in the whole faculty) are not sufficient to lead any sector of the country, neither economics nor commerce nor literature. To compete with â??Palpasa Caféâ?? once again we have to look at the mirror of our education quality and instantly stop striking and start studying (not only reading). Then start dissecting what is right and what is wrong with your sharp wit. Once again, congratulation toWagley Jee. I am personally very proud of you. Let me say to you, had I had better quality than yours I wonâ??t have given you any â??sheerâ?? chance to bag such a prestigious prize called Madan Pursakar. I wish you more success in future.

neutralman Says:

September 2nd, 2005 at 5:45 am
Hi Bloggers!

I am surprised by Ram Acharya’s and Lord’s comments. Ram Acharya ji, so you think you should log in my IP address and try to scare me? Hehhehehe. I pity on that concept. Did I tell anywhere that I support communism, or blah blah? I was simply talking about Madan Guthi inappropriately giving away the prize (this is not the first time they have done that though). And here you are so angry to the extent that you are fantasizing those nasty things. Well, the way you bloggers (Lord ncluded) react to a simple criticism, it is likely that you guys are paid bloggers.

I am not sure another Wagle (who runs this blog) will keep this sentence (since he edited my first comment just like Panchayat run Gorkhapatra used to do long ago). And you have to first understand what I am saying. Ram ji you were telling about if there are other books better than Palpasa cafe for the prize? Hahaahhahaha. So you think there aren’t any? No comment. But if I tell you a name of the book, then you start saying this blog has a hidden intent. So it’s a homework for you to find out if you really want to.

Then this anonimity thing. Ram Acharya ji thinks that I am not introducing myself coz I fear etc etc. Let me tell you the whole idea of blog is to maintain anonimity if one chooses to do. And I don’t know you are Ram Acharya or anybody. Just that you write as that name doesn’t give me enough intro (I don’t want to know though, the way you are dying to know who I am). You could be Golchhe sarki, or Girija Koirala, or madhav Nepal, or even Pushpa Kamal Dahal. May be George Bush. Who knows? Next thing you should do is to give a copy of your citizenship card if you really want to give away ur intro.

What I am saying is that internet newssite or blog sites are really democratic forums. You don’t need to know who the person is, just read the comment and if u have capacity to understand it, enjoy it.

Regarding Lord, his comments are not worth commenting on anyway. he (or she – I don’t have gender bias).

Lahure Says:

September 2nd, 2005 at 12:20 pm
Mr. Neutralman

Like Booker or any other international literary prize, we didn’t hear Madan Puraskar Guthi revealing the shortlist or longlist of the contesting books. Or may be I just didnâ??t know about that. Or may be they have their own secret procedure. I do not doubt over their intention. But I suggest they make their procedure more transparent.

By the way, could you please enlighten this child by naming some of the books that you would have loved to see awarded by the Madan Puraskar? I would lvoe to go through them if I haven’t already and come here to have my thoughts over the books. Could you please point out any other books with more literary marks (The literary merit is only about 2/10, as you have given to Palpasa Café)? That would be a great help.

Plus, people like me would be grateful to read your critical comments (not just the word ‘mediocre’). Why the novel is not good? Is that just because you didn’t like its content or its advertisement or because it as any serious flaws tackling the issue?

Hoping for your wise reply.

LORD Says:

September 2nd, 2005 at 2:00 pm
WHERE QUACK BECOME CRITICS

“Regarding Lord, his comments are not worth commenting on anyway. he (or she â?? I donâ??t have gender bias).”

I had not expected your comment, Mr.Neutralman. I just wanted to give a lesson on literature since you are desperately in need of it. And, one more thing to you, criticism doesn’t mean ‘mediocre or superior or inferior’. If it was so, then ” WOW” would be the best criticism of a work of art.

What is a good literary work? How do you know if a work of literature is good or bad? It is the internal cohesion of a work of art that penetrates, imitates and distorts in order to create. Ok, Neutralman, just come up with one or two good books that you claim to be good literature. I will be happy to enlighten you with some of the yardsticks that fathom the depth of a literary work. Always wait for my reply.

neutralman Says:

September 2nd, 2005 at 4:29 pm
Lahure and who are others?

There you go. Shyamkarna has enlightened us with this fact, and this proves Madan Prize was a farce to this ‘good for people like Lord, Ram Achary, Lahure’ book. So the clowns of Madan Guthi wre in such a hurry to ‘oil massage’ kantipur company that they didn’t know the prize year was not compatible!! Hahhahaha. Come on guys on payrolls!! Get your brain into action.

hmeh Says:

September 2nd, 2005 at 6:05 pm
interesting comments

Umesh Says:

September 2nd, 2005 at 8:18 pm
Congratulation for the wagle for his debut novel Palpasa cafe, which has just won the 0.2 milenium award. Hope that he will continue in the same track or may be like in Bhupi serchan, who after getting award had disappeared in the same height.
Thanks. for this coincedence for me to write again .

Ram Achary Says:

September 2nd, 2005 at 8:46 pm
Mr. Neutralman,
I agree with your proposal of anonymity. OK. However, I insist to read my text once again from the top to the bottom. Unfortunately, the text is broken into two pieces due to the lack of my ignorance of the HTML syntax. What you have digested from my text is wrong. I doubt perhaps you have had the same thing with the Palpasa Cafe’. I don’t mean that Palpasa Cafe is best for all times of ours. It is a hot cake at present. Wisdom can never emerge through mustering or ‘oil-massaging’ or providing a luxury to the doer. Wisdom is its own and it may emerge in you, in me or in any stray kid. It cannot be controlled by our wish however we can at least shape through education. If we were to control, we would also have had control over the doer of the royal massacre in 2001. If you see wisdom in anybody, we need to respect it. That does not mean we respect N. Wagle or muster Kantipur but we salute the wisdom that was ignited in laureate Wagle. Similarly, we should also be smart enough to condemn the criminal will of any body, whether it is stray kid or it be a royal prince.

neutralman Says:

September 3rd, 2005 at 4:23 am
Hi All,

Hey guys, nothing hard feeling here. I was just expressing my thoughts that Madan Guthi did a hastening decision on the prize. And before then, Palpasa Cafe disappointed me (given that amount of media attention and with that sort of fast selling record) and that’s why I was not satisfied with the Madan Puraskar decision. Anyway, thanks to all for enlightening me in various ways.

LORD Says:

September 3rd, 2005 at 7:42 pm
Neutralman, I had no idea that you argue so helplessly. I hope you and Neutralman will spend few years reading literature and literary criticism. It is an arduous job. But I encourage both of you to study more la? Dont only say superior, inferior or mediocre. You have to come up with conrete evidences and examples while making a review of a book, la. Dont only be quacks, be real critics and it is possible only if you love and read literature. See, it is a vast subject. But, dont worry. You can do it if you continuously read for four or five years. Now BYE la?
My benediction is with you,la?

LORD Says:

September 3rd, 2005 at 7:49 pm
Again you are lambasting media attention. What does media mean? The book is not a precious stone that he stumble across while walking. It needs advertisement. How did you know about Palpasa Cafe? Had Narayan Wagle whishpered you to read the book? I guess you came to know about it through ‘media’. Do u know know what mean? Check out a dictionary, la?

ma nepali Says:

September 3rd, 2005 at 9:40 pm
publicity stunt!!

neutralman Says:

September 4th, 2005 at 6:52 am
‘Lord’

It really proves now that you are paid to blog here. I don’t know who pays you, but I guess it would be Kantipur Company. I have seen Nepali media all along and most of them are all bull***t. You have to see the outsode world first, before pleading that Kantipur is a healthy media. It’s a yellow journalism all along anyway. Now it’s a homework for you—come after you prepare ur lesson thoroughly, man!

LORD Says:

September 4th, 2005 at 9:34 pm
Wow! What a scholarly comment you have made. It is like Mandales branding the dissents as â??Arastriya tatwaâ??. Toeing the line and buttering the boss are their ways of thinking. What do you meant by â?? yellow journalismâ??? Yes, the government is blaming the Post and the Kantipur of â??yellow journalismâ?? after they refused to do a Gorkhapatra. And, I have read some of the write-ups written by â?? MEDIA EXPERTSâ?? in these government mouthpieces. You are also one of media EXPERTS, right?

â??Nowhere in the world FM radios are allowed to air news, in England writers and journalists are sentenced to death on sedition charge, Government should not delay in taking actions against Kantipur publications, Kantipur Publications are run by Arastriya Tatwas.â??

Well, Gorkhapatra will certainly entertain your idea. It will pay for your write-up. And, Where have I written a blog? It needs lots of courage and enthusiasm whic I obviously lack. I just wrote a comment. And, I donâ??t want to defend myself against whatever you blabber.

And you have seen Nepali media only, I advice you to see other media as well.

And why donâ??t you understand that you should come up with evidences and examples to wage a debate. You branded Wagleâ??s novel as â??mediocreâ?? and you said Kantipur does â?? Yellow journalismâ??. I would like to check out a dictionary, for these words might be new to you. And, why donâ??t you present your evidences and examples if the novel is â??mediocreâ??, my friend? Thatâ??s why I told you earlier that you are still a quack critic.

neutralman Says:

September 5th, 2005 at 7:15 am
Hhahaah. Lord, that really fired you up! Look, nothing against you. But you shouldn’t be dying to protect the sanctity of Kantipur. Kantipur is popular, but it’s far from neutral. I am not sure how grown up u were when Kantipur was a Nepali Congress mouthpiece when it was in power. May be u were too small to comprehend it. I don’t support this new Panchayat regime, if you are too much worried about whether I am King’s follower. I am indeed, a neutral man. I don’t have any hidden interest in promoting one paper, or one book, like you regular bloggers seem to be doing here. What I advise is to grow up, grow taller and be neutral (as much as you can). But, hey, cool down. It’s just a blog, and there’s nothing so hot here to fight for. Do you agree?

LORD Says:

September 5th, 2005 at 12:03 pm
Well, I agree with you Mr. Neutralman. But, we were talking on Palpasa cafe, kikasota? But you made digressions by talking about Kantipur publications, hoina? So it is better to come down to our original topic. And I am happy to know that you are not one of the ’ media experts’. But again you misfired that I am a blogger. I just make comments whenever I have a mind to. So, I hope retract the sentence you wrote here, la? And, being a literature graduate, I just could not keep mum over the absurd criticism some commentators made here. But people should have at least some knowledge on the topic. And, teh process of gaining knowledge never ends. Iam always open to new ideas. I will keep on growing. Thanx to your suggestions la.

neutralman Says:

September 5th, 2005 at 12:45 pm
Surely that resolves the conflict. Thanx Lord!

Manan Says:

September 7th, 2005 at 6:50 am
This is ridiculous. In no country is the country’s top literary award given to a book only a week after it is published.

Politics is one thing, literature is another. I haven’t read the book and don’t know anything about its literary value; however, the way the prize was given makes me very suspicious about its actual merit. I suppose the book is nothing more than political pop-fiction.

dikshya Says:

October 2nd, 2005 at 7:06 pm
I recently got to read Palpasa Cafe. It was a good read and these days when the youngsters are opting for western literature it is good that Palpasa cafe has intrigued such a discussion among the youth. Congratulations to Narayan Wagle!! A good novel comes once in a while and leaves a lasting impression. Palpasa Cafe is indeed one.

???????????: NepalBlogs.Com » Blog Archive » ‘?? ? ???????’ Says:

October 5th, 2005 at 11:53 pm
[…] (लà¥?à¤?पà¥?रिय à¤?पनà¥?यास पलà¥?पसा à¤?à¥?याफà¥?à¤?ा लाà¤?ि मदन पà¥?रसà¥?à¤?ार विà¤?à¥?ता वाà¤?à¥?लà¥?लà¥? यà¥? मनà¥?तवà¥?य à¤?à¤?à¥?à¤?à¥?बर ५ à¤?à¥? मदन पà¥?रसà¥?à¤?ार समारà¥?हमा दिà¤?à¤?ा हà¥?नà¥? ।) […]

hello…? Says:

November 6th, 2005 at 2:56 pm
I read Palapasa Cafe, and it’s superb. It’s written in simple colloqial Nepali, and has beautiful descriptions, a great storyline and parts of contemporary Nepali culture that i never thought any Nepali book would explore.

Mr. Neutralmanji, all the other Nepali literature that has been awarded have been about the same things – the past. Writers before were so engrossed into becoming sophisticated literary symbols- writing words too difficult to understand, and feelings that an ideal person should feel. Narayan Wagle’s Palpasa Cafe is about NOW, the present. His book is the first Nepali book that most Nepali kids have read at all. Why? Because it’s simple, interesting and doesn’t demand anything from us. Drisya the main character, is like anyone of us and has his drawbacks.

Mr. Neutralman, why do you say the book is mediocre? Because it lacks sophistication? What’s the use of sophisticated language when no one understands it? Also, what’s wrong with advertising and marketing a product, anyway? You say that it was advertised like some cheap Hindi movie but you were fool enough to buy and read it, too?

I feel that Narayan Wagle has done a great job and that Madan Guthi has done a great job, too, by awarding him. And all i know is that a whole generation will be waiting for Wagle’s next book just to read another Nepali book.

Wagle Guff: Coffee, Café and Palpasa

By Dinesh Wagle on July 17th, 2005 in Wagle Street Journal

Narayan Wagle talks about his passion: Writing.

Narayan Wagle, 37, was born in the hilly district of Tanahun, Nepal. He did his schooling in the birthplace and attended college in Kathmandu until 1991. He started his professional/writing career in the following year. Bright, genial, and intensely energetic, as one website introduces the man, Narayan Wagle is one of Nepal’s most widely followed journalists with a number of groundbreaking stories to his credit.

The editor of Kantipur, who rose to fame with his popular semi-fictional weekly column Coffee Guff, found himself as a character in a story two years ago that was filmed with the title ‘Bhedako Oon Jastoâ?¦in search of a song’, (Like Sheep’s Wool). The film is named after the song the journalist first heard in a highland village in Langtang area, north of Kathmandu.

United We Blog! conducted an interview with Narayan Wagle who yesterday made public his first novel Palpasa Café.

Why do you write?
To express myself.

What do you have to say in your work?
I have tried to tell those events and mountains that I saw, experienced and heard about.

What do you hope to get out of your work?
I hope to see many people reading my book.

What aspects of your life appear, transformed or untransformed, in the novel?
My relationships and concerns have appeared in this novel. My progressive imaginations merge with them in many occasions.

In what ways do you appear in the novel?
As a friend of the main protagonist who by chance happens to be a journalist working in Kathmandu.

How would you like your reader to feel after reading your book?
I do not want to disturb readers but I want their time for my creation.

Where is your work set and why?
In Kathmandu and on the mountain because that is what I know about.

What story do you want to write but think you can’t?
There are many but I cant say exactly. It is the duty of a writer to try over issues if he/she feels writing something.

What story do you continue to write but wish you didn’t?
I don’t want to see anymore the way the country is currently going through.

What do you not know that you think you need to know in order to write?
There are many subjects about which I lack information or depth knowledge.

Why is writing important to you?
Because I can’t joyfully experience the time without writing.

When do you usually write?
When an idea attacks me.

What is the best story/book you ever read? Why?
There are many and I am reluctant to give an example.

Where were you and how old were you when you read the best story you ever read?
I found a few stories brilliant that I read in my childhood days. I think a book attracts according to the time, a reader’s awareness and taste.

Which writer do you consider as favorite?
I cannot name the only one but Ernest Hemingway is one of my favorite writers. In Nepal, BP Koirala, Parijaat and Shankar Lamichhane are some names.

Which book has influenced you the most in life?
That too I cannot say with surety.

Tell us something about your association with Coffee/café. When were you first introduced with Café culture?
After I started journalism. After the restoration of democracy [in 1990] would be precise.

Why Coffee Guff was named so?
It came suddenly some 12 years ago when I was writing something drinking coffee.

Many people consider that you rose to your fame via the column Coffee
Guff and other news reports. Let me ask you something on Coffee Guff that
readers consider it as the mix of facts and fiction. To what extent Coffee
Guff is real?
Sometime it’s more factual and less fictional and sometimes other way around. But mostly the Coffee is prepared by mixing both elements. You can’t say Coffee is not real. And Coffee is just a taste.

How do you explain people about the column Coffee Guff?
Read for 15 minutes enjoying to the fullest. If that can create a wave of idea, that’s enough.

Lately, you haven’t written the column as you used to do. Why? And do you miss?
The Coffee Guff became the victim of time, exhaust and lethargic. Now I am giving the examination again.

What story are you going to write next?
Currently I am writing Coffee Guff especially on my recent trip to Korea and Japan.

How do you feel in this transformation from the realistic world to the
fictional world?
I have been experiencing that from Coffee Guff so it’s not very new to me. But I am very much excited about the first novel size Coffee Guff. Because I am anxious to know whether readers will get any tastes of a 250 page long Coffee Guff.

What do you enjoy most: fact or fiction?
I enjoy the moment when I sit to write a mixture of them.

The life and time of journalistic write-up is not long lasting, it is
said. But literature is. Have you decided to lengthen your career in
literature?
Even if the material life of the news short, a good news will have a long lasting impact. A book cannot attain long life just because it is literature. Career or literary age is insignificant in front of the writing passion.

Film is considered as the ultimate form of fiction. What is your view
regarding movies? Do you have any aspirations in that field?
Film is also like news, article, novel or Coffee Guff. I take film as the visual expansion of writing. That is why I am always interested in a beautiful film. I aspire to write the script of a movie and, if I can, direct a cinema in future.

Could you please tell us your experience with the documentary film Bheda Ko Oon Jasto in which you lead a team of musicians in the remote Langtang village in search of a folk tune?
We got out of Kathmandu in a whim and headed toward Langtang. I wanted to meet herdsmen. But when I reached there after a gap of 8 years, those herdsmen whom I have heard about in my previous visit have gone to Malaysia. That odyssey was a visual coffee guff. We had never thought that the film would be this much popular.

In Bheda Ko Oon Jasto too, you basically told the story about the odyssey. What’s different between telling stories via a newspaper article or the novel or the documentary film?
Only the medium is different. You have to be careful about camera in the documentary. But in newspaper, you have to be attentive about facts and background and in novel about the art of writing.

How do you see the ‘language division’ in literature (English and Nepali)?
Personally, I prefer Nepali because I have command over this language. You can get international audience if you write in English. Language is not the barrier but this definitely sets the limitations of audience number.

What do you think are the shortcomings within you as a writer?
I can’t write differently.

You are considered as one of the most traveled journalists in the country. What is travelling for you? How have traveling helped you in your writing if any?
I couldn’t have written Coffee Guff or this novel had I not traveled. A journey is the biggest teacher that makes you understand geography, society, culture and politics.

Which one- travelling or daily work- has influenced the most to Palpasa Café?
Both. While travelling has helped me recognize character and atmosphere, daily routine has familiarized me with busyness. Both have equal contribution over my creations.

You are also the editor of Kantipur, Nepal’s largest newspaper. What does it mean to be the editor of Kantipur?
More responsibility

What is the difference between a reporter and an editor?
A reporter enjoys the freedom and the editor is bounded.

Which job do you like much and why?
For now, to try to keep journalism independent. Because this is very much challenging.

What are the positive and negative sides of your job, especially of the editorship?
My positive side is my positive thinking. There are many negative sides that I do not want my readers to know now.

How do you think journalism and writing have complimented to each other?
Both are mediums of expression. You can get joy in journalism if you have good writing skill. And if you enjoy journalism, writing skill will improve.

When were you satisfied most by your reporting?
I am not interested entertaining myself in satisfaction. Instead, I have been unsatisfied with each reporting. Every time I feel like something is missing.

When do you consider is the high time in your career?
Whenever I am on the mountains for reporting.

Which is the most fascinating place that you have visited in Nepal and outside Nepal.
Yari valley of Humla, Nepal and the mountains that you reach travelling the rounded roads of Kyoto, Japan.

Found in Translation? If you agree with us that something is lost in translation, find that in Narayan Wagle’s original interview in UWB Nepali.

Related Blogs:
1. Narayan Wagle: A Novelist Is Born With Palpasa Cafe

Note: Guff in Nepali means chat/talk/gossip.

3 Responses to “Wagle Guff: Coffee, Café and Palpasa”

jose luis Says:
July 17th, 2005 at 11:39 pm

hey, your blog is great! congratulations! i have linked it. hope you don’t mind. you got a portuguese reader. all the best.

Save Nepal (savenepal@gmail.com) Says:
July 18th, 2005 at 8:09 am

Rather than Coffee Guff, I am enthrolled by the way Wagles (D. Wagle included) are fighting for democracy. Keep it up….

Umesh Says:
July 18th, 2005 at 7:11 pm

It’s a great hit by this blog site.I think this is a great news breaking about the most famous editor, who always dissatisfies with his writing. This is a key factor , which always promotes him , whenever , whereever. Thanks for such great blog site..