30 March, 2010 – After a stormy Sunday evening, Thimphu residents were expecting more bad weather on Monday as the sky over Phajoding turned darker and black clouds gathered over the Talakha goenpa hills. By 4:30 pm, the temperature had dropped and a cold wind swept through the valley.The rain didnt come but, at around 4:45 pm, thick smoke billowing from near Changlam plaza caught the attention of residents and passers-by. A line [... Read More]
29 March, 2010 – Where development facilities should be located has always been controversial with the beneficiary communities wanting them as close as possible to their village.This has been the case, whether it is a community school, basic health unit, the RNR extension office or, in recent years, the farm road, which most rural communities consider synonymous with development and a better life. The latest tussle is over the alignment of a farm road in [... Read More]
27 March, 2010 – Monetary incentives were high on local leaders agenda during their almost weeklong meeting in the capital.
Interviews in newspapers, panel discussions on national television and proposals to the prime minister, all highlighted its importance to our gups.While their proposal for a pay hike, equivalent to that of members of parliament, caused many an eyebrow to rise, in view of their nature of work, gups deserve an increase nevertheless.
In other words, their salaries [... Read More]
26 March, 2010 – The picture of working in a farm is not so appealing to Bhutanese jobseekers, even if they have the hardest time in urban centres staying with uncles and aunts. It is even worse if they have studied up to class X or XII, because then they are too qualified to work in farms.But this will have to change and the 37 school dropouts in Tsirang, who have now become [... Read More]
25 March, 2010 – Yesterday afternoon, the prime minister and several cabinet ministers spent more than two hours answering queries of journalists from the local print and broadcast media.The journalists had a lot to ask and the government had a lot to say on a number of issues, starting from GNH, the economic development policy to political parties going bankrupt.
Not everything the government said or the press asked was breaking news in journalistic parlance, but [... Read More]
24 March, 2010 – Local leaders are here in the capital and they bring with them issues pertaining to their roles and responsibilities, which seem to have been muddled in the countrys transition to democracy.
Gup elections in gewogs have been shelved for the last two years and the authorities are still uncertain about when their elections will be held.Under such circumstances, in some gewogs, following the demise of a local leader, the immediate subordinate mangmis [... Read More]
23 March, 2010 – Elected leaders from the gewogs donning the khamar are in the capital. This reminds us that we have unfinished business as far as democracy in Bhutan is concerned.Local government elections are due and there is no indication when they will begin. Authorities expect a decision after the spring session of parliament, scheduled in May.
In the meantime, its the right time to reflect on the local governments as a [... Read More]
22 March, 2010 – Bhutan, most tourist guidebooks say, is a country of short distances but long journeys. Its another way of saying that travelling around Bhutan can take a comparatively longer time than elsewhere.The narrow roads with countless hairpin bends that snake up the hill and then wind down to the river do not allow for driving at high speeds.
Some of the national highways that run west to east, south and central, were built [... Read More]
20 March, 2010 – A giant banner at the entrance of Norzin lam greets those entering the capital city indicating that Bhutan has joined the world in observing the World Consumer Rights Day on March 15.Except for the flutter of the banner for about a week, there is not much talk about the day and even fewer people understand its significance. Aimed at promoting basic rights of all consumers, the day with the theme, Our [... Read More]
19 March, 2010 – A giant banner at the entrance of Norzin lam greets those entering the capital city indicating that Bhutan has joined the world in observing the World Consumer Rights Day on March 15.Except for the flutter of the banner for about a week, there is not much talk about the day and even fewer people understand its significance. Aimed at promoting basic rights of all consumers, the day with the theme, [... Read More]