Tuesday, January 27th, 2015 - 4:21 PM
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Are we becoming selfish or penny wise?

The Kuensel story “Zhemgang dzongkhag tshogdu (DT) ‘pony rule’ puts civil servants off” in the September 3 issue impelled me to ruminate over and over again. The Zhemgang DT decided to require getting approval from dzongda to use pony or forgo the claim. Why do we require such a rule when the BCSR 2012 sates that one is entitled to claim the porter and pony charges if one is travelling to places without road network? This would just increase the burden of bureaucracy and red-tapism. [... Read More]

Why not ban doma!

The areca nut is the seed of the areca palm (Areca catechu), which grows in much of the tropical Pacific, Asia, and parts of east Africa. It is commonly referred to as betel nut, as it is often chewed wrapped in betel leaves (paan). The habit has many harmful effects on health. The International Agency for Research on Cancer concluded that chewing areca nut is carcinogenic (cancerous) to humans after reviewing the published medical research. Various compounds present in the nut, most importantly arecoline, contribute [... Read More]

Time to Adapt to Climate Change in South Asia

Climate change will sow confusion and concern as it unfolds across South Asia in coming decades. Home to a quarter of the world’s population, this vast region will be hit harder than just about anywhere else. Sudden flooding, storms, droughts and other hazards will upend lives, livelihoods, and economies. As this grim future takes shape, the price of global inaction is rising each year. Up to 9% will have been stripped annually from South Asia’s economy on average by 2100 if no further action is [... Read More]

An Open letter to the Home Minister

Seeking common-sense archery regulation and its strict enforcement to prevent further archery-related tragedies Dear Lyonpo, There is considerable public disquiet about the serious safety risk our national sport poses today. Frustration is seething with no end in sight to the arrow menace. The concerns are valid and our people have long clamoured for a solution. I write to you since public safety falls under your care, and more importantly, because the issue deserves an objective assessment of the systemic factors that are causing it. Our [... Read More]

My green school: A manifesto for GNH education

Thakur S Powdyel, the author of My Green School: An Outline and more so of the awakened education system of Bhutan, waxes lyrical while sketching a neat manifesto for the ‘educating for the GNH initiative’ in the small big book. The book is small in size but is a compendium of the explications of the eight domains of ‘school greenery’ – Powdyel’s brain-child -, which when sincerely implemented, can usher in a “veritable paradise” in Bhutan. A visionary in education, T S Powdyel, on whom [... Read More]

Having a say in what our children speak

A predominance of cartoon channels in Hindi is not appropriate to their language skills In many households, particularly in urban areas, television has become the new babysitter.  Children sit for hours on end watching cartoons, which provide them with a distraction, while freeing up busy parents. A large body of child development research informs us that the foundations for children’s language learning, and other core cognitive skills, are established during the age (2-5 years), when many children sit transfixed in front of the TV enjoying [... Read More]

All About Animals

We came to Bhutan in 1997. We are devoted Buddhists and animal lovers, and started to rescue animals from the streets of Zhemgang 18 years ago. We could not remain inactive with so much suffering around us. The work we do is all about helping those animals in most need: treating them and for those who have no home, giving a temporary, safe and loving place to live. We have currently 201 dogs, 13 cats and 24 monkeys; all these animals were in such physical [... Read More]

The issues of being a report and a bill!

NC’s Views on Pay Revision Discourse The public discourse on pay revision has recently seen an enhanced debate in the media, both social and mainstream. In the crossfire of critical views, the silence of the National Council was loudly felt. The primary concern has been the need for NC to respond to questions asked about the legality of its decision to defer pay revision in the context of the passage and implementation of the Budget Act now. On 22nd June, NC conveyed to the government [... Read More]

One Year On: Reflections on PDP’s election win

It has been exactly one year since Bhutanese went to polls on July 13, 2013 for the second parliamentary elections.  Overall, the 2013 elections had been more exhilarating than the historic 2008 elections. As predicted, in the preliminary round of election in 2013, out of the total of 210,835 votes cast, Druk Phuensum Tshogpa (DPT) won by securing 44.5%, followed by People’s Democratic party (PDP) with 32.5%, Druk Nyamrup Tshogpa (DNT) with 17.5%, and Druk Chirwang Tshogpa (DCT) with 5.9%. The international media had been [... Read More]

My impressions of Bhutan

Dr Haran reflects on her stay in Bhutan as she readies to bid farewell I woke up with a start as I heard somebody say: ‘Five-Alpha’ close to my ears. I realised I’d been daydreaming, while sitting on my rocker on a lazy weekend afternoon.  Seat no. 5 A on the Drukair flight from Delhi to Paro gives the most magnificent view of the Himalayas.  And for the last 20 months I had made numerous trips between Delhi and Paro occupying this seat. I had [... Read More]

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