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Nepal: Bloggers Form Association

Twenty-four bloggers from capital Kathmandu gathered on Saturday April 21 to discuss the formation of Bloggers Association of Nepal (BLOGAN) for the promotion and protection of blogs and blogging in the tiny Himalayan country where blogs are yet to be recognized by the population.

There are less than 300 regular blogs in Nepal, but despite that – the role played by the blogs during the tight censorship of media during King Gyanendra’s direct rule from October 2004 to April 2006 and during the People’s Movement last April that re-established democratic rule have given enough enthusiasm to bloggers to work for expanding the blogosphere further.

By Jitendra Bajracharya
via Jiten World

The enthusiasm is vivid in the entries posted by bloggers. Bloggers are calling the meet a historic one. Mero Sansar posted photos and videos of the gathering under the title ‘Historic Gathering of Nepali Bloggers’ while Deepak’s Diary praises the inclusiveness in the gathering:

The fourth Nepali bloggers’ meet that took place today was historic in every sense of the word. There were unprecedented numbers of bloggers (total 24, six of them female; no gender bias ladies!); they ranged from an eighteen-year-old Deelip Khanal to Buddhi Narayan Shrestha, retired Director General of Survey Department of Nepal; Rajendra Biswakarma represented the Dalit community while there was Mohammad Tajim (a Muslim) and Salik Shah who is an ardent flag bearer of Madhesi issues. But, it was the common thread of blogging that brought us all together. Hey, something's happening? Are you watching?

The meet also formed a working committee to move forward and most of the members nominated themselves to the committee. The committee includes Ujjwal Acharya (co-ordinator), KP Dhungana, Ghanshyam Ojha, Deepak Adhikari, Ram Prasad Dahal, Bishnu Dhakal, Rajendra Biswokarma, Avinashi Paudel, Mohd Tajim, Tapas Barsimha Thapa and Umesh Shrestha.

The meeting also decided to publish a book on blogging to create a awareness and promote blogging. NepaliVoices writes:

he other major decision made today include giving kick-start to book publication. KP Dhungana will be co-ordinating the work while all of us agreed to help him by writing what he will ask for. All the bloggers will write their blogging experience (either English or Nepali).

Though all participating bloggers agreed that an association is needed, there were discussions on whether it should be registered with government or not. Dedicated to Daniel Pearl opposes the idea of registering in fear of losing the freedom that the bloggers enjoy:

Do we need to get registered to perform all these tasks? My fear is also that we not only will loose our freedom but will also fall into a list of the NGOs, which are notoriously known for milking money in Nepal. … But my point is why don't we try to remain as bloggers…not any organzation?

Kathmandu Speaks opines for the need of organization. Registered or not, every bloggers agreed that BLOGAN will hold conference and award best blogs annually and it looks like the Nepali blogosphere is gearing up to become a force.

13 comments

  • Even http://nepaldiary.wordpress.com has mentioned about blog meetings with some photos.
    Good to see Nepalese Bloggers progressing. I am also a Nepalese Blogger but blogging from outside Nepal could not attend that meeting but when time permits, will certainly be there.

  • I agree with Rajin above that the bloggers association is a very welcome development. I work for a nonprofit that sends out volunteers to work with NGOs in Nepal. You can read some of their blogs on our website by visiting the following link http://advocacynet.org/blogs/ and reading the blogs of Devin, Mark, Nicole, Tassos and Ted.

  • sherpa association Japan wanted to be a membership of this organization.

    Thank you very much.
    http://www.sherpaworld.com

  • this is really a good idea for bloggers like us.

  • Please visit http://www.adibasinepal.com

  • Sources “The Himalayan Times” 12th March 08, (Typed; Tshering T. Sherpa)

    Stan Stevens

    The ink is now dry on the landmark agreement pledging implementation of a federal system with recognition of autonomous states that take into account geography, language, history, and the viability of indigenous nationalities. This may mark a turning point in a history marked by marginalization and discrimination against indigenous peoples. It may also begin to meet the commitments made by Nepal last year as the first Asian country to ratify the 1989 Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention of the International Labor Organization.
    ILO 169 established international standards for recognition of human rights of indigenous peoples which include respect for “the integrity of their values, practices, and institutions of these peoples,” “ownership and possession” of their lands, and their right to participate in the “use, management, and conservation “of natural resources. These and other rights to equality, self-governance, and self-determination based on culture and customary territory have been strengthened by the 2007 UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. A federal map which includes not only a Madesh state but gerional political administration that takes into account the aspirations of the Limbuwan ,Khambuwan, Tamsaling, Magarat,Thaaruhat and Tamuwan would be a significant step towards meeting these goals and standards. What will the map of federal Nepal look like? Many of the maps that have been produced thus far by proponents of federalism include autonomous region of states for indigenous peoples. Sadly, all fail to take into account the indigenous peoples of the Himalyas.
    Where are the maps of a federal Nepal that show a great northern Himalayan Autonomous Region as well as a Madesh one? Why do none of these maps show an autonomous region for the Himali people of the high Himalayas? Why do the indigenous peoples of the north continue to be politically and geographically invisibles? Of the 59 indigenous peoples recognized by the government, 17 inhabit the high Himalayas while others are yet to be recognized. The most well-known are the Sherpas. The area they inhabit stretches the length of Nepal along the Tibetan border- from Humla to the high valleys below Kanchanjunga. It comprises over 17 per cent of the total land area of the country. Himali’s inhabit the high mountain and plateau above 2,000m. They all cope with challenges of high-altitude and share a common geography, economy, development challenges and opportunities; They share a common history of migration from Tibet; and a history of two countries of discrimination and marginalization. Recently, they have shared a common experience of assimilation pressures in a society which attempted to create a new national identity defined in terms of the values and beliefs of the Hindu society.
    The Buddhist people of the high Himalayan are well aware of these geographic, historical, cultural, and economic commonalities. And they are awakening to the logic of sharing a political future. Is a Himali Autonomous Region a legitimate aspiration under the federal system of “historical background, language, geography, region and economic resources and viability of the ………..indigenous nationalities”? A strong case can be made on all counts. In some ways a stronger case fro a Himali Autonomous Region can be made than for some other proposed ethnically-based federal states. This is not the ethnically “infused and indivisible social mosaic” that may characterized some other parts. Himali people constitute around 95 percent of the population of the areas being envisioned as Himali Autonomous Region.
    Is a Himali Autonomous Region viable? The short answer is yes. The natural resources to power economic development are enormous. Here is one of the planet’s greatest tourist magnets, with future development potential limited only by the concerns of its residents to protect their cultural and environmental heritage. High-altitude herbs, fungi (Yar-cha-Gun-bu) and animal products (musk,”Yak”cheese-now imported to the US) have tremendous international market potentials. There is possible economic opportunity from cross-border trade and transit with Tibet. And there is revenue from hydroelectricity if agreements were reached that some revenue from the Himalayan Rivers should returns to Himalayan people.
    There will be challenges to link the region in terms of communication and transport. But in the 21st century these linkages no linger simply move up and down valleys-not in the age of aircraft, mobile phone, and the internet. The Buddhism people of the northern high Himalaya have been nearly invisible to Nepal’s Hindu society. It would be an injustice of Himalayan proportions if they remain so while the map of a federal Nepal is drawn.

    Stevens, Associate professor of Geography, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, conducted his PhD research in Khumbu Nepal. Email:- sstevens@geo.umass.edu

  • really an aadventrous idea for all the bloggers plus a good chance of betterment. and dont forget to visit itswebmandu.blogspot.com

  • The move you guys are making is really-really welcoming and worth doing at the time blogging is becoming a very necessary part of everyday life in foreign countries where from a small child who know how to use computers to a ninty years old person share their thoughts everyday through blogging but in Nepal, only few of us know what is blog and blogging. I am very positive about this.

    Regarding whether Association should be registered or not, I do not know about this legal part but think it would be better to consult with the related parties and persons.

    Best wishes!

  • hi

  • Nepal & Me Group

    Referee to today’s Nepal News.dot: It was a sad news regarding Case against VP for taking oath in Hindi- He forget that he is Nepal VP. Sitting at such important post and do not have such thinking to make strong Nepal.We fell that he is only VP for Terai Region and he himself prove that he is not for whole nepal VP. As per our knowledge tarai is just 17% on whole nepal and he is only 17% VP. It hearts all 83% nepali sentiment… so we strongly recommended to protest against him because he is trying to separate nepal and heart nepali people so he is trying to form violent among nepali people if this happen then this would be new form of terrisiom..

    And All the rest party who supported him also heart Nepali People sentiment… so rest party need to re think and re electe new VP… And new VP should represent nepal not Terai…… So Nepli VP Parmananda Jha Murdabad…..

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