Thursday, February 28, 2019

From the Kathmandu Press: Friday, March 1, 2019

Most national dailies have carried the news related to the helicopter crash which took the life of Tourism Minister Rabindra Adhikari and six others in Taplejung on their front pages today as well. The newspapers have discussed what caused the crash and why Nepal has seen so many helicopter crashes.

Papers have also talked about flights coming into Nepal being disrupted due to tensions between India and Pakistan.

Here is a summary of important, ignored and interesting stories from the front pages of national broadsheets:

Important

Helicopter crash raises same old questions

Kantipur, Nagarik, Republica and The Kathmandu Post report that an Air Dynasty helicopter in the eastern mountain region of Taplejung on Wednesday comes as another blow to the country’s flight safety record. The tragedy, which killed the country’s tourism minister and a prominent businessman along with other officials, has once again raised a question: why are so many helicopters crashing in the country?

At least 19 fatal crashes of helicopters have taken place across the country since the aviation authorities started keeping records in 1966. The crash of the Air Dynasty chopper wasn’t the first one that occurred during inclement weather conditions. Three years ago, a Fishtail Air helicopter crashed in Nuwakot, also killing all seven people on board. Last year, an Altitude Air chopper crashed in Nuwakot, killing six people.

The common thing between all the crashes is that the captain of all the flights had violated standard operating procedures for choppers—by entering clouds. What’s also common, aviation experts said, is a certain behavioural attitude the pilots have exhibited in the face of adverse weather. The officials in Taplejung didn’t have a clue about Minister Rabindra Adhikari’s plan to visit Pathibhara. By the time Taplejung CDO and others found out about it, Minister Adhikari and rest of the passengers were already at the temple.

Pancheshwar project still in limbo

Annapurna Post and Karobar report that the meeting of the experts from Nepal and India has failed to reach an agreement on some major issues relating to the construction of the Pancheshwor Multipurpose Hydropower Project.

The two-day meeting, concluded on Thursday, did not reach the conclusion on availability of water and capacity of the project.

Spokesperson at the Ministry of Energy, Hydropower and Irrigation, Prabin Raj Aryal, informed that further discussion was needed because agreement was made only on 64 disputed issues out of 168 in course of the preparation of detailed project report.

Sharing of water, utility of water, investment in project, capacity of hydropower, irrigation and flood control were the pressing issues requiring further discussion, he added.

The Nepali side insisted that Nepal should be provided water in Dodhara and Chandani as per the Mahakali Treaty. But, the Indian side said it could be dealt only after the completion of the project.

Ignored

Rs 109 billion spent by NGOs and INGOs for project operation

Rajdhani reports that Rs 109 billion has been spent by NGOs and INGOs for their project operations. However, most of their projects hasn’t been monitored. According to the Social Welfare Council, INGO’s have spent Rs 89 billion and NGOs have spent around Rs 20 billion of their projects in the past year alone. But questions are arising as these projects which has such high monetary value aren’t being monitored by the government.

Nepali girls being sold for $2000 in Iraq

Naya Patrika reports that Nepali girls are being sold for $2000 in Iraq.

Nepal Police’s CIB has arrested a Nepali couple, Narayan Basnet and Laxmi Nepali, who have been selling young Nepali girls in Iraq. According to the CIB, Laxmi Nepali would find girls wanting to go to Iraq in Nepal and her husband, who was based in Delhi, would manage things to sell the girls in Iraq. CIB suspects there are more people involved in this case and are investigating further.

Interesting

Nepali women cricketers shown a cold shoulder

The Kathmandu Post reports that not a single sports official was present at the Tribhuvan International Airport to welcome the women’s team which finished second in the ICC Women’s World Cup Asia Region Qualifier in Thailand. Despite its stellar showing, the response from both officials and fans to the women’s team has bordered on the apathetic. Even the media choose to stay away when the women’s team returns home.

Carpet industry enjoying growth

Karobar reports that the export of carpets has increased significantly over the past few years due to a demand in the international market. In the past six months alone, export of carpets has increased by 13.3 per cent. Carpets worth around Rs 3.7 billion have been exported abroad in this period, according to Trade and Export Promotion Centre. The increase, according to the Centre, is thanks to promotion of Nepali products in the international market. The growth is likely to continue as demands from United States of America, England, Germany, Italy, Canada, France, Australia and Belgium increases.

 

 

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