Monday, December 26, 2016

RIPPLES of DEMONETIZATION -We, the creator of our own Mess



'Indian Rupees (INR) are once again being illegally sold across the border. Both Bhutanese and Indian nationals in need of INR are paying between Nu 108-112 for INR 100.'
                                                                                                                   Source: Kuensel (December 26,2016)

Ever since the Demonetization of INR 500 and 1000 in India on November 8, Bhutanese people have been bearing the brunt of insufficient INR all these days, and it is going to happen for quite some time. The Royal Monetary Authority receives INR 130 million every week from India, but the figure is still too less. The demand has far exceeded the supply. 

RMA says that majority of the people coming to exchange INR are those going for pilgrimage in India and Nepal. And due to insufficient INR, RMA has come up with a lucky-dip idea where only limited number of people only gets to exchange. The worst of all, people gets into the Que near RMA's office as early as 2 am. Even the children are not spared. Parents also have been bringing their children so that their chances to get the admission inside the money counter is high. 


Isn't this a big shame on our mentality? Don't we have lots to learn?

It is very much agreed that we depend a lot to INR because we import more. We depend more to India, even for as small thing as Salt. It is very much agreed that INR is must for our daily well being and even survival is very difficult without INR, as we are much dependent on imports. But we could save ourselves from running into and getting victimized by lots of un-necessary commotions. 

Yes, that's well stated. We could save ourselves.  

Since when this pilgrimage has become necessary for us? It's a thing to wonder. I don't discourage anybody in going to pilgrimage. Infact I possess no right to do so. I am neither activist nor a bargain on anything, but this very small mentality worries a lot of us. Considering these very petty things, we forget a bigger picture and a more bigger concern. Health, for instance is a pressing issue for us all. As stated earlier, we very much depend on other countries and health facilities is one of them. A friend of mine has already delayed her medical treatment (surgery) in India because she can't avail INR that easily. 

How many more such cases might be pending, because we care less about others?

Bhutanese are very passionate pilgrimages, right? The Kuensel edition on December 26, 2016 reveals a story about Ngultrum Value falling in Phuntsholing. A 100 note of INR is being sold at 120 Ngultrum in Phuntsholing. This is a disturbing news. How far are we going to go on like this? Doesn't this tells a lot of story about our economy? Our carelessness? and our mentality? 

Bhutan is the Last Shangrilla  and The Last Buddhist kingdom.  We have heard, read, experienced and know it ourselves. Bhutan has enough sacred places, more sacred that what we think, enough to be the wonderful and satisfying site for pilgrimage. But, why it has been long forgotten? It's a big irony here that the world looks up to Bhutan for being so sacred and we,  flock down for pilgrimage. 

I fear that we are losing our own identity. 

And what good does it bring by getting INR illegally, serving black duties and going for pilgrimage? 

Chilli was the most talked matter a very few months back. People we literally crying for not getting chilli at the vegetable markets. The absence of the chilli was deeply moaned, and now it's the INR. I am wondering what surprise awaits next!!!


Wednesday, December 21, 2016

MOVIE REVIEW - HOW DO THEY DO?



'ARE WE CULTURALLY SENSITIVE?'

     This is a common questions when it comes to anything that affiliates to our grand culture - the unique identity of Bhutan. The unique culture and tradition is one of the many key factors Bhutan has been enjoying the fame of a Heaven epitome. And this trend will take Bhutan to eons of time bound. 

     What Bhutan didn't do, to keep this trend alive among our generations? And the effect has a long lasting impression in our mentality. Yes, each of us has a sacred duty as brand ambassadors to enhance and uphold this identity with pride. 

     But recently when BICMA disapproved the screening of the recent intentional HIT film by H.H Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpochhoe, Hema Hema: Sing Me Song While I Wait, produced by Pawo Chonyning Dorji, it created public outcry. Almost everyone is talking about Why! And the social media, the most active media in Bhutan is full of this question. 

     BICMA disapproved the screening of the film because it contains culturally inappropriate content. But I believe that the maker of the film, being no ordinary person would not have simply invested so much that it becomes inappropriate JUST for the Bhutanese people to watch it, when the world celebrates it as a MODEL

    And as everyone has the trust in the film, I as a commoner have much confidence that the film has a lot of messages for us all - message from the great Mind.

   Considering all these, the doubt comes in our mind instantly, 'Are we ignoring the greater cause just because it has a small loop? Or as most have pointed out, it is time we sit and talk about the very guidelines  to review the film. 

   This disapproval has further added flavour to the curiosity of the already curious people to watch the film. The film now seems more ambiguous to the public with the only authority reviewing the film disproving it for screening. 

   And the degree of public curiosity is increasing which and I believe people needs to be clarified.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Diamond on our Plate!

     
     
'While the price of a kilogram of chilli cost Rs. 40 to 50 in Phuntsholing, the price of a kilogram of chilli in Thimphu cost Nu. 300 to 400." A news reader in BBS reads. 

What do we learn from this?

The government banned the import of green chilli from Bengal in India in August. That was quite the move towards convincing people that vegetables with harmful pesticide is hazardous. And people understood that. Bravo! But it somehow added to the distress of the vegetable vendors in the country. It  added vile to their business. And somehow the ban was a boon for the local farmers. They got a pretty good market for their locally produced chilli. Justice to our own people! 

One of the many visions of our leaders is 'Self Sufficiency'  through organic farming. Our government and the relevant agencies are trying hard to make people understand that going organic is very crucial. And people seem to very much understand this. But at the same time, we feel that we are being robbed.

People were all smiles with the ban of green chilli from Bengal in India, excepting some disgruntle among the vendors. We got to eat our own farm produce, fresh and organic - no fear of pesticides. And this also created an idea to bring chaos and misunderstanding among our own people. From series of incidents we saw, we know one thing for sure that 'our people are opportunist!" In the sense that they make best use of unfavourable times. 

What we saw during the monsoon season was cabbies ferrying passengers with unreasonable fare - tripling the actual amount of fare. When that was the season our people needed them the most, a lot of them felt victim to the daylight robbery. Even RSTA had to penalize the ones caught. And now as the chilli season is about to meet its dreadful end, the price it fetches is skyrocketing - What nightmare is this?

Wait! Does this mean vendors fix their own price and we don't have anybody regulating them? The price of vegetable rising from 100/kg to 400/kg is not some jokes made by foolish people and consumed by foolish us! This is something to talk about! A lot has been talked and lot more frustration is being poured on this? These days whatever social media page you are on, it is always about the chilli price. When all of us are frustrated over this, there got to be something or somebody  talking on this. But sadly, we live in a society where  people don't bother much. 

But this is killing the commoner. Paying 400 for a kg of chilli is great deal for them and is beyond their capacity. 

However Agriculture department is exploring new market in Darjeeling and Sikkim in India to import green chilli, but what if the same fate is met? I guess we must not mind paying more or totally cut chilli out of the meals. 

         And amidst these misfortunes and hard times, we - the commoner always wait for better!
       

Sunday, November 20, 2016

My thought on BBIN Agreement!

       BBIN Agreement, a much discussed issue in the recent two sessions of the parliament has invited a lot of criticism - both constructive and the otherwise. The Motor Vehicles Agreement for the regulation of Passenger and Cargo vehicular movement in the regions of Bhutan, Bangladesh, India and Nepal was signed last year by the government and marked the move in bringing in more vehicular movement in the country. 

       While lot many said it was a good move and initiative in boosting up and building the economy of the nation, many were not in the favour of the idea that it will bring in lots of chaos. The recent parliament had a thorough discussion on this and the national Council in particular refrained from ratifying the Motor Vehicles Agreement for the regulation of Passenger and Cargo vehicular movement. The National Council was firm with the decision that the government didn't do comprehensive consultation with the relevant stakeholders before signing the agreement. 

       Pointed out right because as far as every citizen is concerned, the terms regarding the BBIN agreement was thoroughly out poured to the people through various source but people were not consulted on the pros and cons of the agreement. The people and the relevant stakeholders were not involved in the decision. The decision of the government to sign the agreement brought about a lot of pleas and cries from the concerned   authorities and individual, particularly the truck and cab owners that the move will definitely intervene in their business in ferrying passenger (regional tourists in particular) and load. All the possible media covered the story but it didn't change the mind of the government. 

      Finally, the much pain of the people were knotted into the agreement!

      The recent denial of the NC in ratifying the agreement somehow was a balm on the wound. It somehow removed the stain of doubt and worries our concern agencies and individuals were carrying for quite sometime.  And I believe that this is for the greater cause and the greater need of the people. 

       Men at the Service of the Public!

    From a commoner's perspectives, the BBIN agreement was for the good of the people and economy of the country, but more than the goodness it promised, it infact has a lot of disadvantages in package. 

       Considering a large figure in the import of vehicles in the country, the Government raised the tax for car imports. Infact it is very surprising that a very high tax is levied for the import of any vehicle in a very poor and developing economy of the country. This sent lot of people wanting to buy a car back home. As long as this 100% tax exists, a commoner's dream to own a car is impossible. And this was much respected and appreciated by all the people and infact the people outside, because out government was very concerned about the environmental pollution. But, the very agreement that will allow more vehicular movement and the 100% tax levied to our own people for buying a car doesn't correlate. This simply doesn't define any justice to our people. 

       Bhutan uphold its pride of being a carbon Negative country and the 100% tax is a means of limiting the imports of cars.  Justified move in maintain that pride! And the recent uproar in the parliament  was because they were less convinced that the vehicles of the rest of the countries is never a threat to the environment and security of the nation. I am pretty moved by the MP's statement about the 100% tax ruining a common man's dream to own a car and letting others roam in our land. 

       What a concern!

       Above all, people are still crossing their fingers that good will come out and there will be justice in the land of peace. And a lot of appreciation to our farsighted leaders who always gave a second thought for the well beings of the people and the Nation as a whole!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Flux of Bhutanese Politics

For the love of Writting!
       Considering the time period Bhutanese politics has come into the limelight and into the lives of people, it hasn't been a long time. In other word, Bhutanese democracy is the youngest in the world with just two parliamentary elections so far. If it has to be compared to a child, it is so tender and so innocent in its outlook. But the maturity our politicians has gained over the years is worth the praise from  heaven. They are so well versed with the politics in the politics. An eight year old boy would not fathom anything about himself thus far as our politicians/parties takes us through. 

       Our farsighted king, the legendary face in the world, the only savior Bhutan would not afford to lose, the one and only Fourth Druk Gyalpo Jigme Singye Wangchuck, against the WILL of people instituted democracy in 2008. It is the most valuable gift no King would have bestowed upon his people thus far, and there would not arise one hereon. His only worry was that his people should not suffer anytime.  We thank him immensely and beyond our words. 

        But everyone asks this same question time and again, 'Are we being led in the right way?'

        Just in eight years, after just two parliamentary elections, people are already facing the flux of what we call 'dirty politics'.  I am no great soul and any renown critic to point out anything here, but just a 'simple view' from a frustrated commoner, who cares. 

       Now as you see, there were lot of commotions during the first ever parliamentary elections in 2008 with just two political parties, Druk Phuensum Tshogpa and People's Democratic Party. In spite of repeated familiarization program by ECB on politics, voting and lot other issues, people were less convinced what democracy is and what party and voting is.  This in fact turned out to be a blessing in disguise for the parties - much more for the party that won. Opposition had just two seats, yet they proved the strength of Unity.

       Five years wasn't much time for people as well as for the parties. By then people were well versed with all the democracy business. The competition was tough in the second parliamentary elections. 

       While it is quite normal that there is both happy face and disgruntle among the people on the services delivered by the parties, the recent time has seen a lot of unusual trend in the politics, both in the ruling and opposition. Well, starting with the resignation of the candidates, the then president of the Opposition Jigme Y. Thinley resigned from serving his people, leaving thousands of his constituency people in disgrace. Well, that was just the beginning. 

       Then came the resignation of the then education minister which resulted in the appointment of a new minister. While rumours have it that these changes are intrigued by a  secret  motive in the party, truth hasn't been known by any. Most probably the resignation of the then Opposition leader might have set an unwise example that a lot has been happening lately. 

       The recent situation in the North-Thimphu constituency has resulted in public outcry. It is the much talked issue. The resignation of North-Thimphu MP Kinga Tshering has not only invited public outcry, but it has also made it to the headlines and issues on social medias. While the party members are not happy with his resignation, people in the constituency are frustrated because of the fact that the candidate put his benefit before his people's. To fill the post, a by-election has to be conducted and Chencho Nidup stood up to contest for the vacant post. But sadly, not many days later, he decided not to contest in the by-election. Chencho didn't want to mix politic and religion as per his mother's bidding, which was very lame again.  That further disheartened the supporters and more importantly the North-Thimphu constituency. This again invited lots of criticism and some even stated that DPT has finally found a playground.

       If just eight  years of democracy has given so much, people are not very much optimistic about good times that will befall us. 


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Monday, August 29, 2016

CLANDESTINE CRUSH



If my verse must speak of my crush upon you
O, the mighty glamour to whom the world seeks
The grains of Earth shall not suffice thy praise
Nor the drops of blue carpet that lies in plenty

But only one unpretentious beat in the heart
Shall feel the crimson power of my Love
Which shall never fade, even if the dark art
Wipes out the earth to the last grain

But the truth shall linger with every rebirth
Of my soul, which will breath with just one name
Of a woman who with all the bliss has conquered all
The one that bears a great name of heaven

Who has the soul fearless, that of a tiger
And who shall rule my heart eternally
Who cares, what wrath halt my ways unto thee?
All I see is the smile of elixir at my arms reach

Who cares what hell would stand my way unto you?
When I desire is the nectar of thy bosom
Even if the forces of nature break my way
I shall deliver myself upon the cozy bench of mine

The one without whom I shall never learn to exist
Till my last breath gives way, I shall crawl,
Even if I have to bear the death retribution
O the darling bud of Spring, the mate of my soul


Thursday, August 25, 2016

To the Smile of Elixir

Never in my life such a lass have I seen
Like one such I behold in you, O friend
Rage stands no meaning on the plain of thine eyes
Nor on the glittering joy of your face
Thy face of moon when no dust defy
If I must trail you with my verse
Till to the toe from the dark cascade 
Shall I begin my praise, but from heart
None will fear the face, even if in rage
It is but the moon that glitters joy
A pair of dark pearl rest on it with peace
Even the spears shall foam down in flowers
As you sound the melody of a furious one
The hum of Nile stands no comparison with your song
And falcons droop with shame to hear you
One that will dare to touch you through lips
Till he feels the tiny vales betwixt thy breast
One who dares to excite you with a touch
He'll will be no fool, but one you have dreamt for long
A knight from the far East, who hath for you rode
If you know not, of what thou are made
Hark hither! For I tell thee, thou art an angel
No lesser to one to whom men bow low on knees
One no men shall dare to meet their eyes, no one
But one that descends from a great name of gallantry
Shall wed this Lass, with the name of greatness
For thou art one priceless, no man can afford to lose