Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Shraddanjali of Shraddha

December 28th is the passing away anniversary of my mother, who passed away over 40 years ago when I was still at school. Death was and still a terrible subject to discuss and even think today and in those days it was extremely  terrific for me. With the passing of time and aging, I realised the message of Lord Krishna in Shreemad Bhagbatgita ''nainam chindanti sastrani
nainam dahati pavakah
na cainam kledayanty apo
na sosayati marutah
The soul can never be cut into pieces by any weapon, nor can he be burned by fire, nor moistened by water, nor withered by the wind.
Tribute to my mother as you are immortal in my heart!

Friday, January 16, 2015


Famous poet Sir Edwin Arnold to UN official say Buddha was born in India distorting the fact and hurting the sentiment of millions of Nepali around the globe. However, I had the opportunity to persuade a senior UN official to make him understand and acknowledge that ‘’ Gautam Buddha was born in Nepal.’’

Click here to read more:


Sanatan Hindu Dharma since time immemorial and the very name of ‘Nepal’ originates from the name of the Hindu sage ‘Ne.’ The history of Nepal clearly states that the country was protected by sage ‘Ne.’ Therefore there is not an iota of doubt that this is a country of Sanatan Dharma since ancient times.

Over 94 percent of the population living from Mechi to Mahakali and Himal to Terai are of the Omkar family (adherents of Sanatan Dharma) therefore it is pertinent to declare Nepal a Hindu nation where people of different religious groups have lived together in harmony for centuries.

The declaration of secular state was neither the demand of popular movement nor the agenda of political parties nor part of the 12 point understanding signed between the parties in New Delhi. The declaration of secular state was a conspiratorial plot to dismantle the peace, harmony, sovereignty and integrity of Nepal.

Earlier, a meeting of Nepalese living in the United Kingdom this week unanimously decided to launch a Sanatan Hindu Dharma Awareness Campaign (SHDAC)  for the restoration of ‘Hindu Nation’ in Nepal for the  preservation, protection and promotion of the most ancient and  glorious Sanatan Hindu religion.

SHAC decided to support all democratic and peaceful programmes launched in Nepal and around the globe for the restoration of ‘’Hindu Nation.’ ’ The meeting, which was attended by representatives of the sister organisations of Nepalese political parties in the UK, businessmen, professionals and others, decided to launch an online petition campaign to garner support from around the globe and coordinate with  Nepalese living in Europe, USA and other parts of the world.

The meeting also discussed about the use of social media for this purpose. The meeting held extensive discussion about the need of declaring Hindu state in Nepal.  The release urged all to sign the petition through the following link:

Sanatan Hindu Dharma has been the religious tradition of Nepal since time immemorial. Renowned ancient Maharshis and King Janak, Sita, and Gautam Buddha were born and lived in Nepal.  Modern history clearly states that Hindu sage named ‘Ne’ established Nepal during prehistoric times, and that the word ‘Nepal’ means the place protected  by the sage ‘Ne.’ There is no an iota of doubt that this is the land of Sanatan Dharma since time immemorial where the greatest sages spent their time in meditation and wrote the greatest religious scriptures. 
Kailash, Pashupatinath, Gokarna, Muktinath, Janakpur, Ruru, Barah, Lumbini, Devghat and hundreds of pilgrimages, shrines, temples, monasteries, dharmashalas and ashrams dating back thousands of years are the testimonies of this fact.  The ancient temples existing for thousands of years are the clear evidence of the existence of Sanatan Hindu religion in Nepal. The Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, Sikhs, Kirantis and other religious adherents lived together respecting each other for thousands of years. The tolerable Hindu culture of ‘Basudaiva Kutumbakam’ is in the heart and mind of the devotees of this glorious tradition.
Adherents of Omkar family (Sanatan Dharma) constitute over 94 percent of the people of Nepal, from Mechi to Mahakali and from Himalayas to  the Terai. The perfect example of brotherhood and fraternity exist between the adherents of Sanatan Dharma and the followers of other religious beliefs since ancient time.  Hindu culture leads our life from birth to death on every occasions and it is in our genes. The greatest Hindu scriptures Vedas, Upanishads and Shreemad Bhagwat Gita and Ramayana and Mahabharata epic are considered to be the supreme creation of the universe. Hindus, Buddhists, Kirantis, Jains, Shikhs and other Sanatan followers have unique cultural identity which cannot be found in any part of the world.
In this context, declaration of ‘secular state’ was neither the demand of popular movement of 2006 nor it was the agenda of 12 point understanding of the political parties signed in New Delhi. Therefore declaration of secular state was undemocratic and against the mandate of people. This conspiratorial declaration of secular state breaking thousands of years old religious, social and cultural harmony, fraternity and unity of Nepal is utterly unacceptable. This is against human rights principles and international values and norms. 
For that reason, it is hostile to the social, cultural and religious beliefs and harmony of Nepal.  The Nepali people outright refuse this undemocratic declaration and understand that this was due to external pressure and plot. As a result, thousands of years’ social, religious and cultural harmony among the people of different ethnic and religious groups and the indivisible entity, sovereignty and unity of Nepal has been dismantled. 
There are many nations in the world which are known as Islamic, Christian and Buddhist countries. There are about one billion Hindus around the world. Nepal can be the representative identity of the Hindus all over the world. The only Sanatan Hindu country of the world is the pride, identity and glory of Nepal. Sanatan culture is our testimony of rich social, religious and cultural heritage and dignity and beauty. 
In light of this ancient glorious tradition of Sanatan Hindu Dharma and respecting the aspirations and feelings of the people, Nepal must be declared a ‘Hindu Nation.’ 
For more information:


Why should  Nepal be a Hindu Nation?

Nepal is in the process of drafting a new democratic constitution. There are many issues among them the reinstatement of Hinduism is one of them as Nepal was declared secular state without people’s mandate. It was neither the demand of the popular movement nor the agenda of any political party.  Sanatan Hindu religion has been the social, cultural and religious tradition of Nepal since ancient time. Historical facts and evidence since ancient time clearly suggest that Nepal has deeply rooted Sanatan Hindu tradition and that tradition continued from various prehistoric periods: Gopal Banshi (cow-herder), Mahaiṣapālavaṃśa (buffalo-herder) to Kiranti, Lichchavi, Thakuri, Malla, Shah, Rana dynasties and even today.

Land of Hindus

Though there are many interpretations about the origin of Nepal, there is no doubt that the name ‘Nepal’ comes from Sanskrit, the language used in the religious scriptures of the Sanatan Hindu. Therefore there is clear link of Sanatan dharma and Nepal for thousands of years. The names of places mentioned in Hindu religious scriptures like Kailash, Pashupatinath, Gokarna, Muktinath, Janakpur, Ruru, Barah, Lumbini, Devghat and hundreds of pilgrimages, shrines, temples, monasteries, dharmashalas and ashrams dating back thousands of years are the testimonies of this fact.  The ancient temples existing for thousands of years are the clear evidence of the existence of Sanatan Hindu religion in Nepal. The evidences of even before the ancient and modern history clearly suggest this land to be known as holy land because of the ancient rishis and maharshis, who created the greatest of the greatest religious scriptures of the universe.

The longest ruling clan Kirantis, Lichchhavis and Mallas have made remarkable contributions in the promotion of religious way of life during their reigns constructing most of the famous temples of the Kathmandu valley, where there were many temples than houses and was known as the city of temples until a few years ago. Even some kings of the Shah dynasty and Rana rulers promoted religious culture and refused to allow the entry of British empire ruling in India. The British empire which had ruled most of the world then, was requesting the permission for a route to Tibet for trade but Nepal government refused with the  notion "with the merchants come the musket and with the Bible comes the bayonet." However, Nepal could not face that pressures and had to fight the war with mighty British Empire in India. After the defeat in the war, Nepal lost one third of its land, and with this the entry of bible was easily accessible into the Himalayan nation.


Though the Rana and Shah dynasties were autocratic, they were too some extent were able to stop the entry of western imperialist religion.  Even after the first revolution of 1950, which opened the door for democracy ending the dynastic rule of Ranas, Nepal remained Hindu nation. The struggles for the restoration of democracy continued as the then King Mahendra sacked the elected government in 1960 and ruled the nation as an autocratic ruler banning all democratic political activities. The 1990s popular movement, which was inspired by the collapse of the Communism from the USSR and Eastern Europe, limited the role of monarchy. However, even after the end of direct rule of the monarchy, the constitution promulgated after that gave continuity to the Hindu nation.  Amidst the Maoists’ civil war and the royal palace massacre, the new king Gyanendra became ambitious to be an autocratic ruler. His ambitious mission to crush the democratic rights united all political forces- democratic and Communists- in one fold and a massive peaceful popular movement compelled the king to give up his power. The parliament which was restored at the height of the movement in 2006 abolished 240 year old monarchy and declared Nepal a republic country.  The new interim constitution also declared Nepal a secular state, which was neither the demand of the people nor the agenda of any political party. How would people accept this ?

The main demand of the popular movement, which brought millions of people in the street, was the end of king’s rule and restoration of democracy. Prior to the popular movement, the main political parties including the Maoists had signed a 12 point understanding in New Delhi. The demand of the popular movement and the 12 point understanding are the main bottom line of Nepal’s political development. However, ‘secularism’ was neither the demand of the popular movement nor any parties nor the 12 point understanding.   Therefore declaring secular state was against the mandate of the people so it is against the demand and wishes of the people. 

Hindu culture in daily life

Over  94 percent of the population are the followers of Hinduism (81.3percent), Buddhism (9 percent), Kirantis, Jainism, and Sikhism and belong to the Sanatan Dharma (Omkar family). The Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, Sikhs, Kirantis and other religious adherents lived together respecting each other for thousands of years. Celebration of dozens of festivals like Dashain, Tihar, Teej, Rakshyabandhan, Shree Krishna Janmashtami, Ekadashi (in every 15 days) Aunshi and Purnima (new moon and  full moon,  twice a month) are also the part of daily life. There is no almost a single day when there is no any festival, rituals and celebratory occasion in Sanatan culture. Most of the people in Nepal engage in Vedic rituals on a daily basis. People perform daily chores such as worshiping early in the morning after bathing, recitation of Gayatri and other mantra, reading religious scriptures, singing devotional hymns, meditation and reciting scriptures. 
Sanatan Hindu religious tradition is deeply rooted in Nepalese society. Adherents of this tradition perform 16 sanskars (rituals) from birth to death and there are hundreds of other religious ceremonies, rituals, festivals and traditional performance during their life time.  Some people even follow Hinduiusm and Buddhism and other rituals and it is in the blood and genes of Nepalese. There is the saying that the people of Kathmandu have more festivals and rituals than the whole days in a year.
The very meaning of Sanatan Dharma is ‘eternal’ or universal principle’ that governs everyone irrespective of culture, race, religion, belief and practices. These truths of universal principle are believed to be   divinely revealed to ancient rishis and passed town orally for many years and written down thousands of years later. This is the most tolerant dharma with social harmony with different religious sects.  There is no practice of conversion in Hinduism like in other religion. However, with the declaration of secular state, media reports suggest that the conversion has sky rocketed.  The population of Christian was 0.4 percent in 2001, however, this number jumped to 1.4 percent while the number of Buddhists gone down. 

With this the social harmony has shattered.  Religion is a completely personal and private matter but there is no informed choice to the people of underprivileged areas of Nepal. Conversion can create problem of radicalisation so there is the need to think about it in time. The news reports in the local media reveal that conversion has flourished and with this there is clash and conflicts with different caste and creeds in the society. Political parties and activists are saying that the conversion has created conflicts in the name of caste, religion and ethnicity.  Neither converting a few millions of people can make the Christianity a great religion, nor can it create social harmony existing in Nepal for centuries.  In view of the centuries old tradition, popular demand and wishes of people, and create social harmony existing among the people of Nepal for centuries, declaration of sanatan dharma with religious freedom  is the most appropriate option in the new constituion. People’s aspiration is the most democratic process and all must respect their choice. There are many countries in the world which are Buddhists, Islamic, Christian and even a small country Israel, surrounded by Islamic countries, is a Jewish state.  There is no Hindu nation in the world. Hinduism is the pride, glory and identity of Nepal. Sanatan dharma Hinduism is the oldest religion with great scriptures like Vedas, Upanishads, Bhagwat Gita etc.  

When there are more than 40 Muslim countries and over 70 Christian countries, why can't Nepal become a Hindu state  as a representative of about a billion Hindus all over the world? Either there should be a referendum to give people the right to vote or Nepal be declared Sanatan Hindu nation.

Saturday, December 21, 2013


My heartfelt tribute to my mum  late Ganga Devi Upadhyaya on the day of annual Shraddha ritual on Tritiya Tithi Yesterday. I am regularly following this tradition (performing Shraddha each and every year) since the passing away of my mother three decades ago when I had just entered my  teenage life. I could not imagine my life without my mother in those days (will I survive in her absence? used to be the question inside my heart, though I could not express such feeling openly fearing that the society would consider me a a weakest of the weak- a coward). But time passes, people live and life goes- but in a different way changing the life style completely in the absence of mother, who is the creator- more than God for every person.

Every mother is special to their children. But my mother was specially special and different from others- for me. First, the credit goes to my mother for all the positive things I have learnt  and achieved today. Her emphasis on education was immense, far reaching and deep. She instructed me to read religious scriptures Durga, Chandi and later Bhagwat and Veda. I still remember that she had inculcated me the habit of reading these books- at least one every morning chanting clearly before I eat anything. I exactly do not know when I started this but it must be when I was around 7/8 years old- long before my Bratabandha ceremony. That helped me a lot to develop the habits of reading books.

Secondly, she always said 'never do anything wrong, bad with the intention of harming others even if it benefits you personally.'  Living a life of value was certainly an exemplary  instruction of my mother. That helped me to lead that way of life- which I think is extremely positive to be fair,  live a life without prejudice and with justice and equality and thinking the underprivileged that makes us humble all time.   

Another important lesson I learnt from my mother was that simplicity is the best way. ''Look none is happy even if they are rich and have got everything because they have not lived a moral life and hungry for everything- material wealth all the time.'' That impressed me very much when I started to understand life later after she passed away. Despite not being able to get any formal education, she always thought that education is extremely important in life and always stressed us on that point. Though I believed without understanding, I now understand it clearly and she is absolutely right.

Now looking back, I remember how impressive were those words- the amulet of my creator- always chanting  like a delicious music in my head and  reminding me those important issues of life which I think has significance even today- even if I am living in a very completely  different age and environment today compared to my mother' day circumstances and environment. 

It is not necessary to be Mother Teressa and all cannot be like her as their influence is limited to only family, society and  specific country. But many mothers are more than Mother Teressa to some extent and definitely my mother was one of them- if not for the wider society - it was definitely for me.  I have a completely different feelings about mother, the creator,  as they can never be wrong to their children. Though the circumstances is completely different today in the place where I live, I still believe that mother is always the mother and cannot be replaced by any other except mother. 
Tribute to my mother on this annual Shraddha day!
May your soul rest in peace!
May you be eternally blessed!

Saturday, December 7, 2013


Nelson Mandela, the former president of South Africa and the renowned freedom fighter, who passed away at the age of 95 ON 5th December 2013 had glorified Nepal during the Non Aligned Movement Summit held in Durban in 1998. There were a total of 114 member states of the NAM and they were attending the summit. Being the host country Mandela and his wife Graca Machel were receiving the guests shaking hands one by one before the inauguration of the summit. It took long time to receive them all so there was just hand shake and move process.
But when Nepal’s late prime minister Girija Prasad Koirala, who was leading the Nepalese delegation, came to   meet with Mandela, he not only shook hand but also hugged Koirala and spoke for a few minutes. When I asked Girija Prasad Koirala about the content of the talk after the summit, he said ‘it was about democracy and freedom in Nepal.’  I was covering the news of the summit sitting with media persons around the world. There was an editor of Al Aharam news agency of Egypt sitting beside me.  When I told him the person talking with Mandela for a long time was Nepal’s prime minister, the al ahram news agency journalist surprisingly asked me ‘’is there any special relations between Nepal and South Africa.’’ When I said 'no'  then he said ''why Mandela was talking with your prime minister for so long time.'' I replied ‘’Nepal’s prime minister is also a freedom fighter like Mandela.’’ That was just my guess answer.  Egypt’s then president Hosni Mubarak was also attending the summit and Egypt was one of the five countries to founding members of the non aligned movement including India, Indonesia and Yugoslavia. However, Mandela did not give any importance to Mubarak.  It was clear that Mandela was honouring  democracy and freedom.

The other leaders getting time to talk with Mandela were Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, Cuban leader Fidel Castro, Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and Columbian president, who was the chair of the NAM before South Africa. It clearly showed Mandela gave priority to the democracy and freedom across the globe that also reflected his talk and meeting with Nepal’s prime minister.  Meeting Mandela was a great privilege during the summit.

I also remember another incident during the summit. Security was beefed up around the summit venue and big concrete blocks were placed specially in the evening. One day, we saw some people outside the summit and they were crying and protesting against the huge security presence and in fact what had happened was they were beggars and they were driven out of their usual place of the streets. They were crying and shouting to make their voice heard but when we met some of them all praised President Mandela.  I still remember a man saying ‘’Tata Madibu is like our father.’’ Then only I knew Mandela was called Tata Madibu as a respect.   We had danced the whole night in the beach, which used to be reserved only for 'white people' during the apartheid era  and the famous singer sang the popular song '' Tata Madibu.'  Now there are such song echoing in every corner of South Africa. 

There were and are still problems in South Africa. Crime was so rife that there was news in the local newspaper one youth was killed in the train for money and only less than 1 rand was found in his pocket. When we were taken to a hotel in Johannesburg from the airport, the local driver said ‘’ I am going to the long route,’’ when we asked why he said showing to a township near the area ‘’ that is a dacoits area.’’ Though there was security and it was in the broad day light that was the security situation. When we went to Durban airport to fly to Johannesburg after the conclusion of the summit, after security check up we were waiting to board a plane , our passports were stolen- all the 18 passports of the Prime Minister’s entourage were stolen from inside the airport that too after the security check up. Interestingly while discussing this terrible situation, Durganath Sharma of Nepal Television who was showing his passport was also gone within a second.  So we can imagine how the situation there was. Despite this, Mandela led the country, struggled for democracy, freedom, human rights and succeeded to achieve that goal. He spent most of his important youthful age in prison- 27 years and had to divorce his wife Winnie Mandela, a freedom fighter after she was found to be involved in criminal activities and did everything for the sake of reconciliation making his own captor the white ruler- instead he made him vice president.  He is an inspiring figure for democracy, freedom, peace, reconciliation, leadership, courage and bravery. Everyone should follow his path specially our leaders in Nepal.   Tribute to this towering figure and friend of Nepal.

Friday, December 6, 2013


I am shocked with the passing away of Nelson Mandela, the towering figure of the world. He was 95. I am neither a politician nor a remarkable figure but his passing away makes me feel horror-struck  because I had the honour of shaking hand with him and he was remarkably a great statesman solely devoting his life for the sake of democracy and freedom in South Africa and around the world.  I had the privilege of covering the news of Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala’s visit to the Non Alignment Movement (NAM) Summit held in Durban of South Africa in 1998. ‘Shaking hand with Mandela’ is a glorious moment of my life. He is a towering political figure, respected and revered not only in South Africa but around the world for his commitment and sacrifice for the sake of democracy and freedom.
No any political leaders of the modern day world match up with Mandela after Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King. He is the symbol of principles and sacrifice and sense of responsibility. Despite spending 27 years in infamous prison Robin Island during the apartheid era in South Africa, he did not take revenge to his captors- the white rulers despite public outrage to arrest and take action against them. He set an example of tolerance in politics and reconciliation became a guideline to those who are aspiring to be leader. His principle for democracy and free society is the example  around the world.  He is the most respected and the most courageous leader of the globe.  
He sacrificed everything – 27 years in prison, his previous wife after she was accused of wrong doing and devoted his entire life for the principle of democracy, freedom and most importantly making reconciliation with the white rulers. He suffered, he struggled and ultimately he succeeded to achieve what he was fighting for-freedom in South Africa.  Mandela will be remembered for many generation as an exemplary leader of bravery, courage, principles and sacrifice.
I have a high opinion of Mandela for his values and principles for freedom, democracy and tolerance.  I also revered him for his reverence to Nepal. Before the inaugural session of NAM summit in Durban, Mandela had received 114 leaders of the world.  I was the witness of that event at the Durban conference centre, and among them he shook hand firmly and spent a few seconds/ minutes with five leaders.  Girija Prasad Koirala was among them and others were Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, Cuban leader Fidel Castro, Palestine leader Yasser Arafat and president of Colombia who was then the chair of NAM.  Mandela giving time to Koirala was a respect for Nepal’s newly restored democracy.  Nepalese politicians must learn from the life of Nelson Mandela. He is an inspiring leader and we must learn his values and principles to make our life meaningful.

I pay tribute to this towering figure of the world. 

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Maha Shivaratri

Aum Namo Shivan Nama! We are celebrating Shivaratri today. This is one of the greatest festival of the Hindus all over the world. Though we could not organise special formal religious programme on our own at our residence, which we wanted, we visited Hindu temple in Reading and paid homage to Lord Shiva. Chanting devotional Shiva bhajans and attending the arati was really inspiring and interesting, at least, we did something to give continuity to our great spiritual tradition of thousands of years. And it was really motivating to visit with all family members and friends. 

There are many stories about the tradition of celebrating Maha Shivaratri.  After  Samundra Manthan, Lord Shiva drank poison  then  went to the Himalayas to meditate. After the demons knew that powerful nectar was found , demons tried to steal it from the Gods because they wanted to be more powerful than the Gods and destroy and take over the heaven. After severe battles between the Gods and demons ( virtue and evils) Devas or Gods  became able to defeat the demons because victory is always with the good or truth and they received gift of immortality- the nectar. Drinking  the poison, Lord Shiva sacrificed himself for the safety of his universe and this is the remembrance of that day.

Another version of the story is this: After the  creation of the world,  Parvati asked Lord Shiva which devotees and rituals pleased him the most. The Lord replied that the 14th night of the new moon, in the dark fortnight during the month of Phalgun, is his most favorite day. Parvati repeated these words to her friends, from whom the word spread over all creation. Since then Shivaratri is being observed by Hindus across the globe.

Sunday, December 30, 2012


My mother had passed away three decades ago when I was a school boy. The memory and love of my mother is still fresh in me. Her absence is felt everyday and night. Like other loving mother, her love was really incomparable. She was very much worried about everything for us. Her deep devotion for our study was remarkable. I still remember that she used to tell us to read Durga and Chandi every day early in the morning so I  used to read by heart, and that became everyday activity of my life for many years- even after the death of my mother. Though I read those religious scriptures by heart, I did not understand the meaning- the essence of those text. Despite this, it helped me to learn about Sanskrit and it was useful to learn English in my later life. It also helped me to be very sensitive to the feelings of people specially to those of downtrodden - living in extreme difficulties. 

Most importantly, the insistence of my mother to study well, to have the feeling to others and to have pity and sympathy to people always encouraged me to be in that path forever. Like any sensible mother,  my mother taught me " help others if you can, if you cannot  then do not do any harm to others." That mantra given to me by  my mother is always with me as a philosophy of my life which I promise to keep it intact throughout my life.

Tomorrow is the anniversary of passing away of my mother. I have the memory of her passing away while getting treatment in a mission hospital in Nepal. Though I was not with her when she died, my father and sister were with her. When people returned after the cremation of her body in Ramdi, in the bank of river Kaligandaki, the first word of people I remember is " take out your cap." It is the custom not to wear cap after the death of parents. I wept and became almost unconscious for sometimes. Time passes quickly - it is more than three decades. My mother could not see our wedding, could not see her grand children which is the dream of every parents and grandparents. Above all, she could not see how we studied and how we are doing in our professional life.  Whatever, her dream was about our future, she must be happy that we have not done what she told us: " help others if you can, do not harm others."

Every year, we do Śrāddha ( श्राद्ध) on the day of her passing away. Śrāddha is remembering the ancestors.  "Sat" means truth, "Adhar" means basis.  Lliterally Shraddha means anything or 'any act that is performed with all sincerity and faith.'  In the Hindu religion,it is a way for people to express heartfelt gratitude and thanks towards their parents and ancestors, for having helped them to be what they are and praying for their eternal  peace. Our heartfelt tribute to our mother Ganga Devi. 

Sunday, February 19, 2012


Do not be too much greedy and selfish. The nursery rhyme cited in “The Wasteland” by great literary figure T.S. Eliot “London bridge is falling down, falling down” seems to be appropriate in the present context of London where selfish; money maker bankers have been engulfing the social values and shattered the society with their own new philosophy of “only money matters.”

As all over the world, London, the financial hub of the world was celebrating Christmas, the biggest festival of over one billion Christians around the world. There was contrast in the celebration as some people specially the London bankers have pushed the boat out with feast and festivities, joys and jubilation. While there were about 4,000 rough sleepers in London alone- and they are sleeping in the streets while the bankers, who took millions of pound as bonus, are enjoying idiotically and at the expense of the tax payers- each and every citizens of this country, however, rough sleepers, whose ambition is just to keep hand and mouth togehter, have been ignored. They are living 30 year shorter than average people of the city. Bankers, who are lavishly enjoying life at the cost of tax payers with millions of pounds of salary, bonuses and pensions, seem to be completely blind about the plight of so many people when in the heart of London 150- 300 people are camping outside the St Paul Cathedral for month’s for fairer society. Christmas is celebrated in memory of Jesus Christ, who sacrificed his life or was crucified for the sake of common people. According to the latest figures of charity Broadway, about 3,975 rough sleepers live in London. Most of them do not live there because they enjoy being homeless, do not like to work or live with family. The main reasons as most of the rough sleepers say in one voice, they do not have job, no family life or other problems like alcoholism or drugs which are serious social problems.

The country is under recession, the unemployment rate is going up, there is cut in each sector and in every corner of the country, there is pay freeze for some months and years, many industries are being closed making many people redundant. The root cause of all these problems is said to be the banking sector. The government is compelled to pump money to the banking sector in the hope of saving our economy so that the country vibrates like pumping blood to other organs of our body and save and make our economy prosperous. However, the bankers at the cost of the tax payers and at the cost of government’s good intention of injecting resources so that the whole country moves in the right track and at the cost of the very foundation and existence of the country, bribing and milking making the “London bridge is falling down, falling down” which has a symbolic meaning. It is the falling down of our economy. It is the falling down of our values and norms. It is the falling down of social and family values. It is the end of moral values like we saw during the summer riot in London and other parts of the country.
What is the difference between the plunderers during the London riot and the bankers? There is definitely some difference. One group burgled through arson and rioting wearing hoody and the other wearing suit and dining in the posh restaurants. The London rioters can justify their acts saying lack of opportunities for their living. But how can the bankers justify their plunder of millions of pound when millions of people have been living in extremely difficult circumstance? Like the London bridge in the nursery rhyme our social and family values are falling down. There is the degradation and draught of morality and integrity. We can improve the teenage rioters by better educating them, providing them employment and opportunities and teaching them about the importance of probity, decency and honesty. Most of them have said that they have “no future” as there is no any prospect of their future. Their action can be forgiven if they improve. However, how can we acquit the bankers for this mess and chaos of economic sector? Yes we can. But if the bankers do to mend this mess.

It is essential to understand the meaning of the nursery rhyme: give, be compassionate and self control (Datta, Dayadhvam, Damyat) as mentioned by the great literary figure Eliot, who had taken these from the Hindu scriptures Upanishads. Giving is the essence of all religions: Hinduism, Christianity, Islam and other religious denomination. While celebrating Christmas Arch Bishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams has rightly said: “The most pressing question we now face, we might well say, is who and where we are as a society. Bonds have been broken, trust abused and lost.”

"Whether it is an urban rioter mindlessly burning down a small shop that serves his community, or a speculator turning his back on the question of who bears the ultimate cost for his acquisitive adventures in the virtual reality of today's financial world, the picture is of atoms spinning apart in the dark," he said.

UK was not a country of selfish, greedy materialistic people in the past like today but a country of altruistic, moderate and noble personalities but that image of the United Kingdom is diminished into the dust due to the devil like money oriented selfish bankers. To revive the glorious past, it is essential to think of Datta, Dayadvam and Damyat (be selfless, give, be compassionate and self control). Rewind the values to solve the present day crisis, will our bankers listen the message of Williams or follow the nursery rhyme which they remember quite clearly even today?

Monday, February 6, 2012


Prime Minister David Cameron said recently that “state multiculturalism failed in the UK.” This generlaisation seems to have been deduced wrongly taking reference to minority of some extremist cases. However, multiculturalism has been thriving in the UK making it one of the most successful multicultural countries in the world. This holds true in the context of Nepali immigrants who are known for their low-profile existence but have made remarkable contributions through various dense associations and civic activities.
Greater Reading Nepalese Community Association (GRNCA), for example, has played a huge role in short span of time in the social and cultural integration in their new home- the United Kingdom, where the number of Nepali is estimated to be around 100,000, according to Centre for Nepal Studies UK (CNSUK).
GRNCA is one of the pioneer Nepali organisations that was established with the effort of around a dozen Nepalis in the UK with the aim to promote cross-cultural understanding through various activities including social, sports, cultural, religious events and festivals.

Former chairperson of the GRNCA Arjun Basnet, recalling establishment of the GRNCA with a dozen of his colleagues, says: “Identity strikes first, so we decided to be united in the name of our own motherland – Nepal - and formed Nepali community a decade ago.”
Nepal, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in the Himalayas bordering China and India. Many Nepalese do not distinguish between Hinduism and Buddhism and follow both religious traditions. The country has the world’s only national flag that is non-quadrilateral in shape.
When the GRNCA committee was formed, there were only a handful of people including founding chairperson of its predecessor organisation, popularised as Reading Nepali Society, C.B. Gurung, so that they could meet, eat and drink together in a house during festivals.
Within a few years’ time, the number of Nepali grew to over 5,000 (according to a census conducted by CNSUK) in Reading area, which is a complex multi-cultural community mainly comprising Indians, Pakistanis, Nepali, Afro-Caribbean and Polish.

Through the platform, the Nepali community in Greater Reading area, also provides volunteer help and conducts research on lifestyle, social behavior and political leanings.
Basnet says, “Giving continuity to our rich social and cultural heritage so that the new generations do not forget their base and integration of Nepali community in the British system for overall improvements of lifestyles in the Greater Reading area is our main objective.”
The humble initiative now has spread to Reading Borough Council, Wokingham District and West Berkshire District Council where over 5,000 people of the community attend the programmes, which have been organised on regular basis for the last few years. Members of other religious beliefs say the efforts of Greater Reading Nepali Community are very significant in understanding and promoting cross-cultural understanding.
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Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Nepalese community living in the UK celebrated Basant Panchami or the Saraswati Puja organising various programmes and encouraging children to pay attention to the study and Hindu values.

Basant Panchami which is known as Shree Panchami or Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge, is celebrated every year. Traditionally during this festival children are taught to write their first words and educational institutions organise special puja of Saraswati.

Shiva Cultural Centre and Nepalese Hindu Forum UK jointly organised a programme at Gorkha Hindu temple, Farnborough on the occasion where Pundit Shiv Niraula and Lama Kesang Ghale shed light on the importance of Saraswati, the goddess of knowledge, and urged parents to be role model because they are the first teachers of their children.

Religious Teacher of Swaminarayan School Kishan Devani shedding light on the significance of Basant Panchami said children are eager to know new things and can be convinced if we explain them scientifically. Highlighting the great Hindu religious tradition, he said our children should feel proud to be Hindu and be the best citizens.

Bhajan was presented by members of the Farnborough Sai Kendra on the occasion which was attended by a large number of people from Farnborough, Aldershot, London and Reading among others.

Chairman of Nepalese Hindu Forum UK, Major (Retd) Surya Upadhya conducted the programme while Pundit Shiv Niraula performed Aarati after the conclusion of the programme.

Meanwhile, Basant Panchami was also observed in Reading on the same day where over 3 dozen children participated and worshipped Saraswati, Goddess of knowledge.