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Bhutan

A decade after Bhutan became a constitutional monarchy, the tiny Himalayan country has charted its independent foreign policy vis-a-vis South Asia. Thimphu has made it pretty obvious that its dealings are no longer tied to India’s coat-tails... as they used to be during the long period of its status as a protectorate. Another critical feature is the role of Bhutan’s Parliament, and not the wishes -- often overbearing -- of South Block.

 
While both Himalayan states functioned in a complete autonomous (and often reclusive) manner for centuries, Tibet became a colony of China in 1950. One question comes immediately to mind: how did Bhutan manage to keep its 'independence'?  
 

When it comes to earthquakes, the kingdom of Bhutan is an anomaly. Despite being surrounded by countries regularly shaken by seismic activity, the small kingdom—nestled between India and China—has been seemingly free of large temblors over the last 500 years. Now, by piecing together historical and tectonic records, an international collaboration of European and Bhutanese researchers says it has solved the mystery.

 

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.  
 


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Review
 
 
 
 
In direct and indirect attacks on Pakistan for its purported role in providing sanctuary to terrorists and their dreaded networks, the Heart of Asia conference concluded in India with a resounding demand for 'strong actions' against terrorism.
 
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Now Pakistan wants an open war with India to which India must respond with full might so that New Delhi may convincingly defeat Islamabad and the coming decades may usher in peace and prosperity for both the neighbours, writes Dr. Sudhanshu Tripathi .
 
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Of all the nominations that the US president-elect Donald Trump has announced for his potential cabinet, none has received as broad acclaim—nationally and globally —as his decision to appoint Nikki Haley, the first female governor of South Carolina and the daughter of Sikh immigrants, to the cabinet-rank position of US amba
 
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US President Barack Obama’s pivot to Asia, such as it was, is an endangered species in the Trump era. Looking back, was it in essence more rhetoric than a policy to be implemented? Leaders of South-east Asia, East Asia and further afield are asking themselves this question.a
 
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The Heart Of Asia conference in Amritsar called for immediate elimination of terrorism to help the war-ravaged country in its political and economic transition. Access the full text here...
 
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The traditional ties between India and the United Arab Emirates have,  over the decades grown, riding on the strength of trade and investments. The Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan will be the chief guest for the 2017 Republic Day
 
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India had not sought the 1971 War. It was a conflict that was imposed on India by Pakistan and its bumbling generals. In the end, it became — and, remains — the perfect example of  statecraft, with a national leadership displaying the requisite  competence and self-assurance, optimally mobilising the nation’
 
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An aching sense of love, loss and yearning permeate this work of fiction which, however, reads like a personal narrative set in an intensely disruptive period of Indian history, and adds to the genre of partition literature, writes Ni...

 
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This is a path-breaking work on India's foreign policy since Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister in May 2014 and surprised everyone by taking virtual charge of the external affairs portfolio. A man who had been denied visa by some count...

 
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The pattern of Chinese actions on the global stage demonstrates that it lives by the credo of might is right, a potent tool in its armoury for the pursuit of aggressive designs, writes Sudip Talukdar for South Asia Monitor....

 
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The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad and others of their ilk not only destabilise Pakistan and make it one of the world's most dangerous places but also threaten neighbouring Afghanistan and India -- and even far...

 
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