Tag Archives: delhi

American Diplomatic Cable: Indians, Allergic to Police Advisor Reference, Wanted to Change UN Resolution on Mission In Nepal

2007-01-18 12:27




E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/18/2017



Classified By: Ambassador James F. Moriarty. Reasons 1.4 (b/d).


¶1. (C) Indian Ambassador Mukherjee requested a meeting with
the Ambassador January 18 to relay New Delhi’s concern with
references in the draft UN Security Resolution (UNSCR) on
Nepal to police advisors as well as the U.S.-proposed clause
on explosive devices. Ambassador Mukherjee said that, while
India would not block the presence of UN police advisors, it
did not want the advisors explicitly mentioned in the
resolution, citing the potential for mission creep and UN
“intrusiveness” in a Nepal-led election process. Mukherjee
also said India preferred that language on mines, improvised
explosive devices (IEDs), and unexploded ordinance be
omitted. These arms management details were already included
in the prior November 28 Agreement on the Management of Arms
and Armies, he said. Ambassador Mukherjee reiterated India’s
goal of a focused and limited UN Mission in Nepal with
ownership of the peace process firmly in the hands of the
Nepali Government. Both Ambassadors agreed that speedy
finalization of a resolution was critical for success of arms
management, and that small details in the draft UNSCR’s
language should not get in the way of its rapid adoption. Continue reading American Diplomatic Cable: Indians, Allergic to Police Advisor Reference, Wanted to Change UN Resolution on Mission In Nepal

Reasons to Come Home

reasons to come home:  kathmandu post sunday 13 feb 2011

By Dinesh Wagle
Wagle Street Journal

I came back to Kathmandu last week after completing my two year tenure in Delhi. “Welcome back to darkness,” some of my friends said.

Load shedding is not a new phenomenon in Kathmandu. But the continued and unacceptably long hours of power cuts have fueled further frustration. Not to mention the ‘deadlocked’ politics and lack of developmental activities. I was mildly surprised to learn that some of my friends preferred to see me in Delhi (meaning anywhere out of Nepal) than in Kathmandu.

This familiar love-hate relationship with the homeland—can’t live with it, can’t live without it. You may run away from home to escape problems but you cannot live away from it for long. You may want to earn a degree or work abroad for a few years but you do not want to die there. The desire to return becomes so strong that at one point it overwhelms you. You will start feeling uncomfortable even with the relatively comfortable life there.

People want to share their happiness with their own. In a foreign land, however many good friends they may have, they can’t communicate their excitement with foreigners as easily as they can with their friends, relatives and neighbours back home. Even if they do, foreigners won’t understand them. They also want to show off their progress—not to their newly acquired foreign friends but to their folks back home. “A Nepali won’t feel validated without showing off his colour television set to his neighbour in Nepal despite earning millions of rupees in Japan,” a senior journalist colleague once told me.

That’s true because there are many other millionaires in developed societies where personal achievements aren’t taken as the significant step they would be considered in Nepal. This is true with any other nationality too. For some it could be the other way around. I have come across many Westerners who have decided to spend their life in third world countries like Nepal and India because they get ‘royal treatment’ and ‘attention’ here. They can’t get the same level of importance in their native society because there are so many other people just like them.

Another very important reason for people to return to their homelands is their desire to do something for their society. After gaining knowledge or amassing wealth, they want to come back to serve their motherland.

My case is slightly different. I do have a strong desire to serve my society and uplift the quality of my profession, but I didn’t go out of Nepal to study or seek employment. And I didn’t come back to show off or share my happiness and progress with my family. In fact, my significant other is still in Delhi studying, among others, econometrics. While in Delhi I was working for a Kathmandu-based company, this newspaper and its Nepali-language sister publication, as fulltime staff. Very few Nepalis work for Nepali companies from outside of Nepal because of the nation’s frail economy.

But Delhi is no New York or Tokyo. This is the capital city of a country where tens of thousands of unfortunate Nepalis toil day and night for meagre earnings. During my stay in the city and trips to other parts of India, I didn’t meet a single Nepali who was very happy or proud to be where he was. And Nepalis are everywhere. From Jammu to Kanyakumari, Mumbai to Shillong, Lucknow to Hyderabad. In all these places I saw Nepalis working at dhabas and shops. Not a good sight. I overheard them talking loudly in Nepali about their difficult life. Not a good sound. All of my attempts to track a Nepali who has done a great deal of ‘progress’ (apart from Udit Narayan and Manisha Koirala) resulted in encounters with momo sellers or small-time liquor sellers in Delhi. I have realised that Nepalis do not go to India to seek success. They go there to sustain their lives. India is not a land of opportunity for us, but a temporary escape from our reality.

But India is not to be blamed for our misfortune. The problem lies with us, not with them. If you are poor and divided, others will look down upon you.

Instead, I feel, India is doing us a favour by allowing us to enter its boundaries without asking. Of course, it does so because of its own compulsions and to safeguard its own strategic interests.

Despite all the hype and hoopla about India being a constitutionally secular country, in my understanding, this is not the case. India can’t become a secular country because it is not just a country. It’s a continent in itself and, more than that, it’s a civilisation. This civilisation is different from that of, say, the Chinese or the West or Muslims. It’s the Hindu civilisation. You don’t have to be a Huntington to understand why a nation that has the second largest Muslim population in the world fought twice with Pakistan and is fencing its frontiers with Bangladesh with barbed wires but is so keen on keeping the border with Nepal open. Jawaharlal Nehru once said something about the Himalayas being India’s final frontier and Hindu nationalists in India continue to believe even today that Nepal is part of what they call the Bharat Barsha.

My understanding is that India has no problem with Nepal as long as it remains a predominantly Hindu society. All the rhetoric that comes out of Delhi that Nepal is ‘tilting’ towards China or becoming ‘a hotbed for anti-India activities’ is lame. This happens despite knowing that Nepal can never be as close to China as it is with India because of civilisational differences with its northern neighbour.

This article was first published in today’s Kathmandu Post. Nepali versionof the same was published in Saturday (12 Feb) edition of Kantipur.

Men and Monkeys of New Delhi, India

Delhi monkeys
“We are at their mercy,’’ lamented Rajesh Sehgal, a resident of Mayur Vihar Phase II neighbourhood in east Delhi. “The number of monkeys in the locality has increased beyond control in the past couple of years.” Pic by AFP in 2006, Rajpath, New Delhi.

Humans and monkeys struggle for space in the Indian capital

going ape in delhi kathmandu post p6.15.08.10
TKP 15.08.10 (click to enlarge)

By Dinesh Wagle

It took me a week and three incidents to identify the culprit. I had kept a bucket of household waste just outside the main entrance of my third-floor apartment so that the collector could take it away. One recent afternoon, the collector knocked on my door to show me something. I was horrified. The waste materials were scattered all over the stairs as if it had been done by a monkey. Or could it be the work of the dog that always sleeps at the main entrance three stories below? I wasn’t sure. But last week, I saw him live in action, playing with my kitchen waste, scattering it all over—like a monkey. The culprit was indeed a monkey.

For the first time in 20 months, I got the taste of living in Delhi. A bad taste it was, but perhaps not so bad compared to what residents of many other neighborhoods in Delhi are experiencing. Monkeys are creating havoc in their daily lives. “We are at their mercy,’’ lamented Rajesh Sehgal, a resident of Mayur Vihar Phase II neighbourhood in east Delhi. Sehgal is also vice president of the area’s Residents Welfare Association. “The number of monkeys in the locality has increased beyond control in the past couple of years,” he told The Times of India last week.

In June, a monkey entered a high security Metro train in Northwest Delhi and delayed the service by 15 minutes. No one was harmed, but members of the Central Industrial Security Force had to intervene to get the monkey out of the train. A cell phone captured the simian’s antics that were fun to watch later on TV, but Metro officials were not amused. “The animal caused a flutter among passengers with everybody running helter-skelter,” NDTV quoted an anonymous Metro official as saying. Continue reading Men and Monkeys of New Delhi, India

An Encounter with a Baburam Bhattarai Supporter in Delhi

words of wisdom_Kathmandu_Post.08July2010
Kathmandu Post 08.07.2010

The young man is from Dr. Bhattarai’s constituency in Gorkha district

By Dinesh Wagle

It was the hottest June day in five years, Delhi boiling at 45 degrees Celsius. I was waiting for someone at the international airport. There I met him. He had gone there to receive one of his relatives from Kathmandu who was supposed to stop overnight in Delhi before flying to Moscow the next morning (He had a 16-hour long transit). That didn’t materialise. The traveller wasn’t allowed to go out of the airport. We drove back to the city centre together.

“I have been living in Delhi for the last four years,” he said. “India is the best place for a Nepali like me who doesn’t mind working hard for a living.”

There’s no official data but there are estimated five million Nepalis living and working in India. Vast majority of those who work do so in unorganised sectors: security guards, cooks/waiters and other lowly positions in private and government institutions. There’s no reason to complain for the poorest country in the region that has miserably failed to create jobs for its citizens.

Sujan Lamichhane came to Delhi to work as a peon in a private office three years after finishing his school. He worked as a waiter in a restaurant in Kathmandu for some years before coming here. The man from Gorkha district admitted himself in a college in Delhi while he continued with the job as peon. Continue reading An Encounter with a Baburam Bhattarai Supporter in Delhi

Talking About Revolution #Nepal

Talking about revolution Kahtmandu Post 23 May 2010
Click to enlarge

On the Maoist, French restaurateur of Kathmandu and Nepali leaders in Delhi

By Dinesh Wagle

News reports from Meghalaya are disheartening. Nepali migrant workers and Nepali-speaking Indians are being chased away from their homes and workplaces (coal mines) by the Khasis who are in a majority in the North-Eastern Indian state. Some Nepalis have been killed; one of them was burnt alive during the ruthless eviction that began early last week. Some Khasis of the state have issued an ultimatum to the Nepalis to leave Meghalaya that, some say, is against the 1950 Indo-Nepal peace and friendship treaty. The Indian state, so far, has done nothing to stop the ethnic conflict. May be they will act, but part of the problem is with us. Nepal hasn’t been able to provide jobs to its own citizens. Unemployed folks, therefore, are forced to go to the hills of Meghalaya (and other parts of India, not to mention the Gulf countries) to look for jobs Continue reading Talking About Revolution #Nepal