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Twin Otters down

The rugged Canadian plane has been the workhorse of Nepal’s domestic aviation for four decades, but has suffered terrible attrition. The hardy Canadian-built DHC-6 Twin Otter was designed for flying in the challenging environment of countries like Nepal with rough and short airfields carved out of mountain sides. Pilots say the plane handles well, needs […]

The next step

Nepalis were disillusioned with the candidates on offer, not with democracy. That is the main take-home for the political parties. – It was an election that had to happen and it did. No one said it was going to be perfect, no one expected it to be completely free of violence and intimidation, but it […]

“Peaceful banda”

A stern-looking woman with her hair tied up in a bun enters a pasal in Patan, and leaves a printed letter on the counter. The young girl reads the demand for Rs 5,000 to Rs 50,000 to finance the Tesro Jana Andolan. The shopkeeper says she doesn’t understand. “What don’t you understand, haven’t you heard […]

TIA or Terribly Inept Airport

The number of mountain flights that take off from Kathmandu every morning is a pretty good indication of how Nepal’s tourism industry is doing. Last Saturday there were 35 mountain flights. And, 42 more flights were headed towards Lukla on the same day. All this means is that we are well on our way to […]


For the past 20 years, as a media nomad, I have covered stories across the Asia-Pacific region. Lately, I’ve been roaming across Nepal and have by now visited most of the country’s 75 districts. Earlier this year, during a three-month stint through the country with the screening of the documentary Frames of War, I started […]

A state of lawlessness

First posted on on 11 July, 2009 After traversing Nepal for more than two months, passing 40 districts, braving highway blockades, curfews and indefinite bandas we were stopped dead in our tracks outside Pokhara. There was no way we could get past a barricade of rocks, logs and the burnt out hulk of a […]

Travels in Nepal’s Nepal

First posted on on 18 May, 2009 Now that it looks like we are going to have a government again, it is only a question of time that the current climate of normalcy along the highways of Nepal will soon come to an end. Sure enough, even as Madhav Kumar Nepal went to the […]