Nepal is this Himalayan country of 28 million people stretching and landlocked between Earths’ two most populated nations, China and India. It boasts having 10 out of the 14 highest mountains in the world, along with Mt Everest (8,848m), and thus has been for over a century a major hub for mountain-climbers from every continent. This activity still widely contributes to the local tourism industry. And during the 1960s and 1970s,the capital Kathmandu used to be for Westerners one of the major destinations of the then famous (or infamous?) hippie trail.
For the twenty past years, Nepal's history has been marked by political tensions. The long time kingdom of Nepal became a Republic in 2007.
At least, that's what most of us already know about Nepal. There's indeed much more to it.
According to the Buddhist tradition, Gautama Buddha was born in Lumbini, nowadays in modern-day Nepal, and the Nepalese take high pride in that. Nepal is also home to wild animals like rhinos, elephants and tigers.
This information and many more, you'll find reading Sanjib Chaudhary's three fascinating blogs, sankuchy (his professional blog), tharuculture (Voice of Tharus, a trove of stories, videos and photographs about traditions), and yetaautaa (meaning ‘here-there’, a “traveller's diary” and much more).
But if you want to know about Nepali life today, be it politics, sports, activism, protection of animals, great food…, the best resource are indeed Sanjib‘s posts for Global Voices Online – there are eleven of them to date, widely translated on Lingua webpages.
Last week, I was delighted to chat with Sanjib on Skype from Kathmandu, and to learn more about his background and what brought him to GV. A chemical engineer by training, he first worked two years for the industry in Nepal, and then, 10 years ago, he turned a brand and communication specialist. A contributor to the Korean collaborative news website OhmyNews in his free time, he was looking for an alternative citizen journalism media, and in 2013 he discovered GV. He applied as an author to our regional Editor for South Asia,Rezwan, sending his previous articles. He does not consider himself a regular contributor: when something important happens involving Nepal, he browses the social media, forms his own opinion and seeks to give a perspective differing from the mainstream media's one. This does not prevent him to also contribute sometimes to newspapers.
Besides this very busy life, Sanjib, who deems himself an “avid reader and a gym freak”, is also an enthusiastic traveller, from East and South Asia to Europe and South America.
These days, Sanjib sends his bright catching smile our way from a small town in Eastern Nepal called Rajbiraj, with his short write-up about the place.
See you soon at the GV Summit 2015 in Cebu City, Sanjib!