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Editorial: Fighting odds

2 November, 2009 – ust as the eastern region was getting over the devastating September 21 quake, it came back in a flash on the night of October 29 with a 5.2 tremor, its epi centre in Mongar.Thankfully it was not as powerful as the first one. There were no casualties and some structures were damaged for the first time. It did not wreak as much damage as the earlier tremor apart from making worse existing damages. It did, however, have people running outdoors and [... Read More]

Editorial: On CDG again

1 November, 2009 – The Chief Election Commissioners (CEC) plea to revoke the controversial constituency development grant or CDG is too little too late. The prime minister and his responsible government, will not consider the request, at least this time, because CDG is a done deal and in some constituencies, its already being implemented.The grant was passed notwithstanding a lot of hue and cry from various quarters. If CDG was really unconstitutional, the government would have applied the brakes, but they knew that it didnt [... Read More]

Editorial: The circulation of teachers

30 October, 2009 – The education ministry is getting desperate. And it should be. Despite all the yap, paperwork and meetings, it has failed to ensure teachers dont crowd around the urban schools, while many rural schools languish under a dire shortage.The ministry has, however, not given up. It recently sent out a circular, asking Thimphu teachers to volunteer to teach, for at least two years, in any school outside Thimphu, Paro and Phuentsholing towns. The next step is to compulsorily send teachers, who have [... Read More]

Editorial: The pentavalent vaccine pause

29 October, 2009 – The death of four infants immunised with the pentavalent vaccine, introduced this September, has left many parents, who readily received the five in one vaccination, worried.Although it is not confirmed that the vaccine caused the deaths, officials have also not ruled out the possibility. Meanwhile, the move to withdraw the vaccine has left many questions unanswered. The vaccine was introduced with the intention of protecting infants against pneumonia, one of the leading causes of death in children under 15 years in [... Read More]

Editorial: On the road to recovery

28 October, 2009 – The eastern districts that were hit by the earthquake, windstorm and a devastating fire are on the road to recovery.The royal visit calmed and raised the spirits of those affected and strengthened their resolve to move on. The people have been assured that everything possible will be done to rebuild their lives. Getting over the trauma is perhaps a crucial aspect in dealing with disasters and the royal visit played a key role in rising above it. The affected people have [... Read More]

Editorial: Keeping burglars at bay

27 October, 2009 – Not long ago, a Thimphu flat would be safe even if left unlocked for hours. No longer. Today, you fear to leave the curtains open.A growing culture of petty crimes, with burglary on the top of the list, is increasingly concerning residents in the capital. Police records show that 136 burglary cases were registered in just 10 months. This is roughly one house robbed in every 30 hours, a sign that we have thieves waiting around every corner in Thimphu. Hundreds [... Read More]

Editorial: Media has to find the happy medium

25 October, 2009 – The conflict between the management and the editorial team of the Bhutan Times newspaper, which resulted in the resignation of six of its reporters and an editor, has brought into focus an issue that will come up more often in the future.But it is not a new issue. Tussles between the management/owners and journalists, advertisement and editorial are as old as the media industry itself and will continue as long as the media exists. For the Bhutanese media, which is still [... Read More]

Editorial: Scanning GNH

23 October, 2009 – one of the strongest arguments for GNH is that economic growth does not always bring with it happiness. Economic growth is not important. But GNH needs it, nonetheless, for it to be workable. But economic development must not become blind capitalism or excessive greed for consumerism. How do you ensure that is the case?Under GNH, the responsibility of the state is to create conditions where the citizen can seek and find happiness. The idea is that understanding what fosters wellbeing can [... Read More]

Editorial: The Lows Of High Tech

22 October, 2009 – The circulation of two locally produced mature content clips has not only raised curiosity to new levels but also reignited the debate on the baggage that comes along with ICT technology.At this point, the clips do not seem to be made for a commercial purpose, other than people experimenting with what is possible with the proliferation of technology. Whether it was made with the consent of those featured is another question mark. But it may be just the beginning. As money [... Read More]

Editorial: Making an opportunity of a problem

21 October, 2009 – There is no surprise in seeing authorities engaged in skirmishes with vegetable vendors along Norzin lam in the capital. It is an old issue. Only the streets have changed.A sign of developing countries, vendors flocking cities, unfortunately crowded streets, is a common sight in our part of the world. Chasing them way will not solve the problem nor does it sounds like a good solution. We have tried that in the past when the municipal authorities employed a once infamous Ap [... Read More]