DPT Menifesto

7 Jun

DPT’s president Jigme Y Thinley visits Kanglung Gewog.

Yonten Phuntshok

On 14th May, Druk Phuensum Tshokpa’s President Jigme Y Thinley and his officials visited Kanglung Gewog for second term Party manifesto. Hundreds gathered in the gewog conference hall with hopes of choosing the best party.

Jigme Y Thinley accompanied by Dasho Minjur Dorji and team consisting about fifteen showed their hopes and aspiration to bring in the near future if people choose their party for the second term Parliamentary election. DPT’s President said, “Satisfaction and dissatisfaction of his rule for five years term is always there in people’s mind but I would always thank the people for giving me the chance to rule for five years term.”

There were only two parties during the 2008 election but now it has gone up to four parties and there are chances of rising false relation between the family matters, which led to dysfunction of relation finally leading to loose of countries independence, he added. He even talked the public about the importance of preserving and keeping the good did of forefathers alive. It is always fearful to be elected and to face the duties after being elected but our team is ready to face the challenges if given the chance, he added. During their five years rule in the country, they had promised the people to bring up improvement with 153 promises in different fields but they left with only 3 unturned while others were submitted. Their team had mainly focused in the fields of education, water, solar, road medicine and communication.

“Druk Phuensum Tshokpa and their team have made a successful rule over five years with the outcome of connecting 205 gewogs whole over the country. Now with road connection everywhere, people from remote places are able to transport vegetables and other goods to town areas and raise their own income. During the 9th year plan, country was covered only with 30-35% electricity but with 10th year plan, it was upgraded into 100% which is a greatest achievement and light to the darkness. People facing problem with drying up of streams were solved with fresh water supply and now remotest places around the country were constructed with Basic health unit (BHU) construction and supply of ambulance for any emergency cases donated by Japanese government, which is actually difficult to effort by our own. Now cell phone connection is working efficiently where people around the country are all connected. In the field of agriculture, people are supplied with machines which require less effort and more outcomes. People are trained in field of agriculture and organization of committee for supply of their own product, such as setting up poultries” he said.

On the way to their developmental progress, DPT has also brought up with vast decrease in the percentage of poverty level. He said, “In 2007, there was 23% backward people who could not afford themselves but with our 10th year plan, we could reduce it to 15%. The difference between rich and poor was 7th times difference in 2007 but they could reduce it into 6th times with the idea of equality.” “I was appreciated by the officials gathered in New Delhi for poverty line and by completing 150 items plans collaboration with World Bank,” he added.

The president also talked about the democracy and human rights. He talked about the human rights handed by our 5th king to the people of Bhutan; in which Bhutanese people rejected to receive but the king told the public that people are capable of handling the rights. “In olden days lower people were afraid to raise their heads over the superiors but now every single people are aware of it. They can now really fight against their own rights with those human rights,” he said. He also shared the public about his worries with the newly establishment of young democracy. “Peace, security, equality and justice in the nation are what the leader’s worry of,” he added.

With that he shared the public about Bhutan’s threat with security and international relation. He said, “Bhutan is just like the potato in between large two stones.” Cooperation is the main thing to bring people together in keeping the nation independent, he added. He shared about the inspiring quote given by one of the audience saying that, “Bhutan is just like the egg between two stone which is more fragile.” He shared about the development of international relation with foreign nations, in which Bhutan had relation with only 21 countries in 2007 and now it has increased to 53 countries which are more than double.

The president also shared about his achievement as a leader for five years term. He said that he was considered less corrupted leader with more transparency and Bhutan is 4th worldwide for development with 8% development which was proved by IMF (World Bank). “Bhutan tops in happiness worldwide and even tourists shed tears to leave our country after their visit,” he added.

He also proceeded with the ideology of governance and about the Gyalpozhing land scamp. “Make use of the intelligent, so that the wrong things can be also proven as right thing by another person,” he quoted. He said, “Media right is important and for democracy to be strong, media is going to play to fight the right but it is very important to think over it.” “The cook up stories was actually all wrong. The land was the one which is not fertile, nothing can be cultivated and there was no way one can make income over it. It was the time when he the 4th King Jigme Singye Wangchuck’s visit to eastern Bhutan and he accompanied with the king. The land’s name Gyalpozhing (king’s land) denoted very special and one of the old grandfather even raised his voice saying that, the land is full of sand and nothing if fertile here so it just meant for Kings. With that he also had the linage connection with his great grandparent’s connection to the land, so it was me and Lyoenpo Yeshi Zhimba to buy a piece of land just to remark the linage but people just blamed over my works. Later with construction of damn and people’s settlement with improvement of soil fertility has made people won their own land. Later people complained saying that their substitution of land was all infertile but indeed they were provided with all they wanted,” said he.

The three hours talk ended with his manifesto and developmental plans if he is to elect for the second round election. His first plan was to reduce level of poverty to 0%. The next thing was to provide 0% jobless youth. “In 2007 number of jobless youth was huge with 1, 40,000 youth and during our 10th year plan, they reduced it from 7% to 2.2% and if given the next chance, we are going to take it as chance to provide job to make it 0%.  Next was to bring up development in construction of factories, set up large business with foreign nations, develop education city, improve health facilities, tourist influences, internet technology facilities, rural prosperity and to form a group called ‘Phama’, to help poor parents who really don’t have someone to lend them hands. “The talk was really concerning us the public to whom to vote, “said app Dorji from Pangthang village who was one among hundreds to attain the conference.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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yonphula festival report

7 Jun

Yonphula celebrated its annual mask festival for four days starting from 18th April till 21th.  The four days Tshechu saw Thousands of people gathered to witness the mask dances and traditional dances performed by village dancers. The Mayor of Rongthung, Kinzang Dorji and His Holiness Jigme Tenzin Rinpoche with the help from monk body and villagers organized the festival.

The four days festival gathered people from all the five eastern district of Bhutan. People from places such as Bumthang, Monger, Trashi yangtse, Pemagatshel and Trashigang district were present during the festival. Some came for business purposes and some came to meet their relatives and friends as it was a good time to enjoy and relax. Sonam, a business women said, “This kind of festivals happening all over Bhutan in different periods opens us with the opportunities to earn money for living, I get my goods from Bangkok and do business all over the country in such festivals”, it seemed she made a good profit as she kept on smiling.

The age of the monastery is unknown but the tshechu tradition has been followed for 48 years now coinciding with the birth anniversary of Guru Pemba Sambava which fall on the tenth day of the month according to Bhutanese calendar. The mayor of the village said, “Everyone remembers the birthday of Jesus Christ but nobody knows of Guru’s birthday, therefore, it is special occasion to remind people the great works done by guru for the people of Bhutan”. “ since tenth day of Bhutanese month is considered auspicious, people stay free from works and offer prayers to Guru, the enlightened one, I personal found it feasible to begin our old aged festival for the benefit of all sentient beings,” he added.

His Holiness, Jigme Tenzin Rinpoche presided the religious ceremonies for four days. The devotees around the country came to offer prayers and get blessing from the former. The gomchens of Ugyen Choeling Monastery under the former’s guidance performed Nyingma mask dances. His Holiness addressing to the people said, “No one is free from the chain of birth and death, every living being has an unknown reason to be healthy or poor, this kind of festival and occasion is golden opportunity to erase the misdeeds we have and gain merits for the present and next life. I arch all of you not to miss even a single dance”.

The four days festival ended with blessing from the rinpoche and disclosing of Thongdral (religious sculpture) to the people.

 

 

 

 

 

Beat profile

7 Jun

Beat Profile

Gyeltshen Wangdi a twenty-one year old boy is from Chaling; Trashigang and he is mentally challenged and unable to use his left arm due to paralysis. Gyeltshen Wangdi was brought to Draktsho Vocational Training Centre for Special Children and Youth in the fall of 2011 by his parents with the hope that their son will be healed with time.

Gyeltshen Wangdi is eldest of the five siblings in his family. He now faces these mental condition and paralysis of left arm because of car accident in 2009. His family has spent all these times for his treatment and they have even traveled outside the country for his medical checkup but they have not seen any positive response. Finally they decided to register him in Draktsho of his wellbeing.

Gyeltshen Wangdi’s family has seen great deal of trouble with him. His parents are both employed in government job and his siblings are enrolled in school so there is no one to look after him. It frequently happens that he loses his consciousness and creates problems. In his absent mind he undresses himself and walk through the public places. So to prevent this kind of situation in the future his parents registered him in Draktsho.

In Draktsho, Gyeltshen Wangdi has different side. He has done well in almost all the task that he was assigned by his tutor. He is learning traditional art and craft, painting and computer literacy. “My left arm gives me great uncomforting.  I am unable to get hold of objects while carrying out my task,” said Gyeltshen Wangdi. Activities that are practiced in Draktsho has helped him lot in building his artistic skills and control of his mind. He has produced considerable number of goods from the skills that he has learned. His paintings and craft goods such as hats, wallets and key hangers are kept in Draktsho Shop for sell.

“In my presence of mind and when I am clear in thought, I still wish to continue my education,” said Gyeltshen Wangdi. He was forced to leave the school by his health condition after the accident, by then he was in eleventh standard. Two long years has passed with this health condition and hardship but he have not lost his hope that the day will come, when he can normal life. “I know I am in this state because of my karmic action but the day will come when I can help my parents and communicate well with my friends once again,” said Gyeltshen Wangdi.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

profile

7 Jun

As a middle school student, Kinley Wangmo had a dream of becoming a diplomat, representing her country to the world beyond Bhutan in her best manner she could. Kinley Wangmo, is an 18 year old girl from Kanglug; Menthung. She completed her higher secondary school from Khaling in 2011 and joined Sherubtse College in 2012 with excitement to pursue Media studies and English as her major.

She grew up in normal Bhutanese society with loving and medium sized family. Most of her relatives are outside the country but they keep frequent contact with her family. She also make frequent visit to their places and interact with them often. “I like travelling and exploring the world around me.” Kinley Wangmo said.

Kinley Wangmo has actively participated in considerable number of co-curriculum activities, attended several workshops in schools and cultural exchange program to other countries. Her last cultural exchange program was in 2010 to Singapore; where they were asked to showcase the different culture prevailing in Bhutan and to work effectively with different people belonging to different countries. “I still keep in touch with most of people whom I have met in my life.” said, 18 year old Kinley Wangmo.

 Kinley Wangmo believes that her passion for travelling from places to places and interacting with different people across the country have ignited her dream to become a diplomat and she also give credit to her Uncle Tashi Tenzin for guiding her in deciding what she should pursue in her life as career.

During her weekends Kinley Wangmo helps her parents in shop, which they own in Kanglung, and in her leisure times she browses internet and face-book and twitter to contact her relatives and friends outside the country because social networking sites are the only easy means she have with her to be in touch. She believes that she has made up to mid way and hope that her iron will to achieve her dream will take her to her destiny. “I love doing what I love. So I will make it one fine day.” Concluded, Kinley wangmo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

NC election

7 Jun

Is NC election less important?

On April 23rd Bhutanese voters exercised their franchise for the second National Council elections. An official figure, the election commission released on 24th, shows 171,544 voters cast their votes this time. However, with the total registered voters increased to 379,819 as opposed to 312,502 back then, the voter turnout percentage dropped to 45.16 percent this time. The first council election saw a voter turnout of around 53 percent.

It’s “yes” for Sonam Kinga, a former council candidate and the lone nominee of the National council election in Trashigang for this year. It was not a surprise, neither for the candidate nor for the voters who waited to find out what will be the result of Trashigang. The curiosity was more about finding out how the “no” votes compared with the  “yes” ones for Sonam Kinga who was re-contesting for the seat for another term.

Votes from both the electronic voting machines (EVMs) and postal ballots showed an overwhelming support for the candidate who on 23rd won 11,219 “yes” votes to return as Trashigang’s National Council candidate representative for a second term. “I have won the seat but I didn’t expect there will be 2,620 “no” for Me.” said Sonam Kinga.

While the National election went smoothly, voters are still talking about the election. Kinga Wangdi, first year student perusing Physical Science major in Sherubtse College said “I did not vote for this time because the NC election is not very important.” He added “Since NC’s candidates most of the time deals with the making of law, and they don’t have mach hand in bringing development to our district. I felt it is not much important and so I did not vote.” 

Lobzang Tenzin, taking Political science and History, feels that his vote would have been rejected because he has forgotten to fill his Witness chart. He said “even a simple mistake like this can lead to the rejection of our vote.

“From Trashigang we only have one candidate of National Council, so it is ‘yes” for me,” said a late forty’s woman, Kinley Wangmo from Kanglung. She believes that it is always good to have somebody representing us then no one to speak on behalf of us.

 

 

 

fina

7 Jun

FINA (The Forum for International and National Awareness)

 

FINA (Forum for International and National Awareness), the largest and the oldest student body of Sherubtse College was instigated by the former Health Minister and the then Principal of Sherubtse College Lyonpo Zangley Drukpa with a “noble cause”.

FINA was created to fight back the problems of ethnicity which existed in the College in the 1980s. “When I took over Sherubtse there were societies such as the Current Affairs Society, Nepali Society, English Society and Dzongkha Society and the membership of those societies were based on ethnic backgrounds.” Said Lyonpo Zangley Drukpa.

He said that the already existing ethnic problem in the College was adding up with students of other ethnic background wanting to create their own different societies. “After discussing the issue with Late Father Lacklier we started up FNIA (Forum for National and International Affairs) which was later change into FINA (Forum for International and National Awareness),” added Lyonpo Zangley.

After keeping in mind that the literary societies were a threat to the “unity, harmony and against the idea of One Nation, One People” and to engage students in other “productive” activities FINA was founded after chartering its draft with the help of “Professor Dr. Shrivastav” in 1989.

The first ever FINA elections were held through the secret ballot routine where Sangay Passang presently working in the Agriculture Ministry was elected as the first ever FINA President. “FINA was a platform where members from all kinds of backgrounds joined in without ethnic or Linguistic discriminations,” said the then Vice Principal and present Education Minister Lyonpo Thakur Singh Powdyel.  

Having ones of FINA’s role to initiate forums for discussion of important matters and also to conduct seminars, FINA has been very active in its role in the College for the past 23 years.“I remember FINA conducting meetings on the Seventh Five Year Plan where FINA organized a three day workshop to discuss the draft documents, held mock session on United Nations (UN), conducted workshop on environment and many more”, added Lyonpo Thakur.

Today, FINA stands firm under the guidance of the present FINA president Jamyang Thinley who has been in serving FINA with dedication for the past three (3) years. Being the First year representative, then the Second year representative and now the President, he is appreciated by all for his outstanding support to the students and the College administration.

Lobzang Tenzin, a final year student pursuing Political Science expressed his gratitude towards FINA for exhibiting a vital role as a bridge between the students and the administration. He said, “FINA actually reduces the burden of the Deans and the administration as it conducts the overall functions and activities of the College.”

While the role of FINA is appreciated by all there are a few who doubt the accountability and transparency of FINA. Kinga,24 a final year student expressed his view on this matter. “I would not undermine the role of FINA but then I and some of my mates have discussed on the issue and we think that there is a lack of transparency in FINA.”

On questioning about the kind of transparency issues they talk about he said, “We talk and doubt on the use of funds by the FINA during programs held by them because there is no bills or information conveyed to us about how the money has been used. Other than that I feel FINA is doing well.”

However, Lobzang Tenzin shared his opinion that FINA is transparent and fair as their budgets are allocated by the Accounts Section and approved by the Administrative Officer and the Deans.

With the approaching of the FINA elections, students are enthusiastic about who all will be participating and who will be the new FINA President. Sonam Penjor a Second year student of Population Studies is an aspiring FINA candidate and he aims to “provide selfless service to all”. “I think am capable for this post and I aim to polish the already existing system of the college without formulating any new change.” He said.

He conveyed his indebtedness to FINA for maintaining a staunch student body and rejected the opinion on the lack of transparency in FINA. “I do not believe in such things as the College has a Finance Section that deals with the monetary matters and all those things.” He added that such things are “rumours” and should not be “blindly accepted”.

FINA however stands firm and strong with the support of the students and the administration. A forum once created to fight discrimination in the college today stands high and resilient with very little loop holes continuing to empower the students and assisting the administration. 

Submitted by:

  • Kinley Wangmo Media/Eng
  • Yangchen LhamoMedia/Eng
  • RosmiRanaMedia/Eng
  • ChecheyMedia/Eng
  • Sangay LhamoMedia/Eng
  • Dorji Yuden Media/Dzo
  • YontenPhuntshokMedia/Eng

 

 

 

 

Aside 8 Apr

Draktsho

Draktsho, it’s situated in Rongthung, about 5 km away from Kanglung town. It is home to mentally and physically challenge people. The institute was established with the help of funds from foreign organization out of Bhutan, few years ago to help those people who cannot enjoy the opportunities that a normal person do. I feel it really help the people those who seek help from them, because there are many number of people who have been registered under Draktsho and I have seen the number growing since the inception of the institute in that place.

Last Friday on 5th April I and some of my friends went there to observe life of those people who are residing there. We could not meet Principal of the institute because he was out of station. There was an instructor called Tshering Lhamo, who welcomed us and she took us to make observation of the Draktsho and their activities. She said that the institute focuses on the academic and vocational training and other four instructor to help carry out the regular activities. She also said there are five categories of people who have been challenge in their lives and they are; intellectual, speaking, hearing, physical and visual challenge people. They have one boys’ hostel and two girls’ hostels to accommodate them. They also have kitchen with gas stove but what I noticed is that there were only 3 pots in the kitchen.

It was Friday and they were having regular classes. I noticed those people were carrying out different types of activities. They were having tailoring class and most of they were deaf and some were in arts and painting class. Another class was weaving class, irrespective of gender they are taught how to weave. Mrs. Tshering Lhamo said that weaving class is given to those who are interested in this skill and for those whose parents have asked for. Apart from all these activities they too have sports hour, whole of Wednesday is assigned as sports day. They play most of the spots that a normal man can play. They also play dough ball which was introduced by a foreigner in the institution. 

In front of the class some were taught how to sing and some were engaged in making dance steps. At that site what really draw my attention was very small girl. She was little in height and also her face was small face, they said she was having Down syndrome. There was another group of people, a severe one who were seated in plastic chair in a comfortable room. As we passed through that room they were staring at us. As we were alien to them they moved towards the window and gazed to us until we were away from that place.

The academic class is only for thirty minutes for a day so the academic class was over before we arrived there. They teach Dzongkha and English grammar. Mrs. Tshering Lhamo said that most of the classes are taken in practical as most of them are mentally challenged. At the end of the day we visited the Draktsho showroom, I was amazed to see all the colorful works done by those students. There were beautiful paintings, mufflers, Kuthangs (traditional painting), wine bottle wrappers, laptop bags and shopping bags. They sell these things and generate income for themselves. Most of their customers are tourists; they buy these things as a sign for good luck because the hard work of these disabled people are respected. Although they are mentally and physically challenge in their life but their dedication in their work to find a better life has mastered their skill.