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Bhutan

In an effort to provide a healthier environment for those living in the Olakha automobile workshop area, the government will invest at least Nu 12M to improve the area.

 

Bhutan, a tiny Himalayan kingdom, is a pioneer when it comes to protecting its environment. A country with a negative carbon footprint, which also is a carbon sinkhole, Bhutan’s constitution explicitly mentions that no less than 60 per cent of Bhutan must always remain forested.

 

It is the only country in the world that is carbon negative, which means it produces more oxygen than it consumes. Bhutan generates about 2.2 million tonnes of carbon annually, yet its forests absorb three times this amount, which creates a carbon sink.

 

Bhutan is the world’s biggest creator of refugees by per capita. In one fell swoop in the 1990s, the country expelled the Lhotshampa, an ethnic group with its origins in Nepal which made up one-sixth of Bhutan’s population, to preserve its unique national identity. More than 20 years on, thousands still remain in camps in Nepal, lost in their own country. This is at stark contrast with the idyllic and homely image Bhutan has carefully curated for itself. As the world looks on at Syria and the deepening migrant crisis in the Mediterranean and concern grows, Bhutan attracts little attention. But as the world finally wakes up to the plight of refugees, it is important that one of the largest refugee populations in South Asia is not forgotten.

 
In recognition for the commitment and efforts made by the health ministry to have successfully eliminated maternal and neonatal tetanus, the World Health Organisation (WHO) South-East Asia Region (SEAR) awarded a certificate of appreciation to Bhutan on September 6.  
 

Bhutanese journalist Namgay Zam is facing defamation charges over a Facebook post, marking the first time that anyone in the Himalayan country has been taken to court over their social media activities.

 
Bhutan, a Himalayan nation with a population of fewer than a million people, is well on its way to eliminating the scourge of malaria. Investigators from the National Malaria Surveillance System of Bhutan report a dramatic drop in malaria cases, from nearly 40,000 in 1994 to only 45 in 2013. Many of the new infections are clustered in regions along the border with India.  
 
Mountain Echoes, the country's annual literary festival, brings Pico Iyer, Amitav Ghosh, Tabu and Piyush Pandey to Thimphu for a 3-day cultural carnival Seven years ago, Mountain Echoes, a gritty little literary festival put down roots in Thimphu, hoping to grow a forest of ideas. 
 

Six years ago, when Mountain Echoes, an Indo-Bhutanese literature festival began in Thimphu, Bhutan, it was an unpretentious, informal affair. All those who were participating in the festival from India got a wonderful summer vacation out of it. The three-day festival featured names such as Gulzar, Sarnath Banerjee and Chetan Bhagat — a curious mix to showcase “Indian” literature to a Bhutanese audience.

 

"Mountain Echoes" was the title of a book of oral biographies of Pahari women that I had edited, and a festival we at Yatra books had recently hosted in Dehradun with the Himalayan Library.

 


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Finally breaking her silence on the Rohingya exodus, Myanmar’s state counsellor and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi has said that her government would like to understand the root causes of the refugee crisis and investigate charges of human rights abuses.
 
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As talk of war and violence -- all that Mahatma Gandhi stood against -- gains prominence across the world, a Gandhian scholar has urged that the teachings of the apostle of non-violence be taken to the classroom.

 
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Interview with Hudson Institute’s Aparna Pande, whose book From Chanakya to Modi: Evolution of India’s Foreign Policy, was released on June 17.

 
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This is the continuing amazing spiritual journey of a Muslim man from Kerala who plunged into Vedic religion after a chance encounter with a Hindu mystic under a jackfruit tree in the backyard of his house when he was just nine. It is a story w...

 
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History is told by the victors but in our modern age, even contemporary events get - or are given - a slant, where some contributors soon get eclipsed from the narrative or their images tarnished.

 
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