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Editorial

BEAR leads the way

A three-member Bhutan Emergency Aeromedical Retrieval Team (BEAR) has achieved remarkable feat by saving many lives that would otherwise have been impossible given the long journey to the nearest health facilities and difficult terrain that separate our many villages.

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Lessons from Merak

We have come to a point in our development journey when the challenges we face demand extraordinary resolve to act, not just with level-headed planning, but also with a sense of greater urgency. While the urban centres are facing rapid population growth and housing shortage, houses in the villages are being increasingly abandoned.

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Alternative facts matter

Bhutan’s struggle with rampant use and abuse of controlled substances is a national issue. It is no secret that the ban on tobacco has cultivated a black market that law enforcement agencies are unable to crack. Yet, we appear to be in denial.

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Increase local rice production

The news that Food Corporation Bhutan (FCB) will continue to buy local rice despite poor marketability is welcome. It perhaps is the only way to encourage farmers to continue growing local rice and thereby increasing rice production in the country. Already, the Cabinet has instructed FCB to procure paddy from Wangdue, Punakha, Tsirang, Sarpang, and Samdrupjongkhar.

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The agriculture crisis

Rapid urbanisation and ever-increasing demand for infrastructure development is pushing agriculture or food production to the backseat. Close to 700 acres of paddy fields have been lost to road, building, and township development; about 323 acres more to illegal conversion of wetland and natural disasters.

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