Editor's Vids

Nepali literature more expressive than English, feels singers Bipul Chettri

Bipul Chettri sketches of Darjeeling
His songs from the recently-launched debut album has Sketches of Darjeeling, explores everything that every Hill folk can relate to. Be it the toy train, the wildfire, the bustling wind, cow bells, mountains, the humming of the monks at the monastery, he sums up everything in his songs, lending them a folk flavour, while also giving them a western touch.
Bipul Chhetri took the Gangtok people to a high with his simple yet elegant music at Cafe Live and Loud as part of his ‘Lai Bari Lai’ tour.  After thrilling the Kathmandu crowd, people here could not resist themselves from tapping their feet right from ‘Asar’ to ‘Mountain High.’
Thirty-three-year-old Chhetri from Kalimpong sent the crowd here down memory lane with his amalgamation of Nepali folk-rock genre that explores the beauty and uniqueness of the Hills. Maintaining a low profile as of now, music seems to come to him as a passion, though he ceases to contemplate himself as a celebrity.
“Folk music completed me as a person and I am deeply rooted in the culture, because folk music has a sense of originality and it is who I am,” he shared. He, however does not confine himself to mere folk music and strives to explore other genres as well.
“Our culture has a lot more potential in terms of expression. Nepali literature and culture can capture a lot more than what English can do, and our rich culture has been the original source of motivation for me,” Chhetri said here on Saturday.
Kalimpong’s very own musician, Chhetri also holds a diploma in classical guitar from Trinity College, London. Right from his first song ‘Dhadelo’ that created a sensation online to recent hits like ‘Mountain High’, ‘Asar’ and ‘Ram Saile’, an ode to his father, his songs have been on everyone’s playlist, confined not only to the Hills but beyond it.
Chhetri, who claims music to be have been in his blood said “music was always there in my life since childhood. And good music teachers at my school, St Augustine’s in Kalimpong, helped me explore more.”
Chhetri, whose Darjeeling-related songs are a hit on Sound Cloud, added: “The overwhelming response from music lovers all over the world was more than expected.”
Chhetri also heads the Arts Department at the Vasant Valley School in New Delhi, suggests young and aspiring artists to come out of the confinement and explore, meet different people so that something or the other comes up.
His next stop will be Delhi, followed by a tour outside India.

St. Alphonsus Kurseong maths teacher wins National Best Teacher Award-2014

St. Alphonsus Kurseong maths teacher wins National Best Teacher Award-2014
A mathematics teacher from Saint Alphonsus HS School in Kurseong, Anand Pradhan, has been honoured with the National Best Teacher Award-2014. The award was handed over to him during the 9th National Mathematics Convention on 11 and 12 October at Raipur in Chhattisgarh, organised by the All India Ramanujan Mathematics Club (AIRMC) in association with Raipur Engineering Club RITEE.
The Chhattisgarh state education minister handed Mr Anand Pradhan a gold medal, a plaque/memento, and a citation.
It is learnt that the All India Ramanujan Mathematics Club is a government-approved national club that caters to the needs of school children and helps them understand the subject with ease or aim to remove the fear of mathematics from the minds of the people. Seven persons, including Mr Pradhan, had been selected for the prestigious award among the 100 other entries.
According to the AIRMC, MR Pradhan has put in a lot of effort while experimenting on his ‘Mathematics Work’ to uplift the standard of the subject in schools of Darjeeling Hills.
According to Mr Pradhan, the AIRMC had organised a seminar with PHD scholars in January this year, in which 21 scholars, including himself, had participated. His presentation during the seminar was adjudged the best. “I have also been invited to participate in the upcoming international mathematics convention slated to be held next year in Mauritius,” he said.
According to him, he completed his MSC from Calcutta University, but when he was studying at North Bengal University, the then department head Prof Karanjai inspired him to do research work on mathematics.
“Professor Karanjai had told me that in his career he noticed that many students from Darjeeling have been avoiding or not completing their studies on mathematics. Since then, I decided to find out the reasons,” Mr Pradhan said.
He said his thesis on mathematics will be completed next year under the guidance of professor Karanjai, who is now retired.
Asked about the reasons for Hill students’ disinterest in the subject, he said there are many. “But the main ones are that Mathematics needs a lot of practice, which the students here do not do. The second is that parents do not seriously involve themselves in the studies of their children,” he said.(sns)

Major fire at Deorali bazaar Gangtok Kills 8 Year Old girl

Major fire at Deorali bazaar Gangtok Kills 8 Year Old girl
An eight-year old girl was killed this afternoon while two others were injured following a major fire at the Deorali bazaar area in Gangtok. Five wooden houses and a three-storeyed building was adjacent to the houses were damaged by the blaze and 11 families were left homeless.

"It took more than an hour to bring the fire under control. We are trying to find out the reason behind the blaze although preliminary evidence suggests someone in the wooden houses must have left a cooking stove unattended," said deputy chief officer

Prakash Rai.

He added three fire trucks with a total capacity of 3,000 litres had to be deployed

to douse the inferno. Rai further said the girl who died has been identified as Norah Sherpa. She had locked herself inside a toilet.

“The girl was already dead when brought to the hospital. She had died of asphyxia," said STNM hospital additional medical superintendent KB Gurung. Sherpa was a student of Class 3 at Deorali Girl's Government Senior Secondary school.

The others injured were 18-year-old Sudha Shah and Naresh Gurung (45). Both have sustained burn injuries in the legs. Sub-divisional magistrate Sharmista Rai said the victims will be compensated as per government norms.(EOIC)

1st GTA Badminton Championship & Ranking Tournament 2014

1st GTA Badminton Championship & Ranking Tournament 2014
The 1st GTA (Gorkhaland Territorial Administration) Badminton Championship & Ranking Tournament 2014 was co-organized by the GTA Sports and Youth Affairs Department and Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Badminton Association at the local Gymkhana Club.

The GTA Champions are as follows:
Under 15 Girls Singles Champion – Simran Rai from Darjeeling
Under 15 Boys Singles Champion – Yugant Tamang from Kalimpong
Under 15 Girls Doubles Champion –Rinchen Bhutia + Simran Rai from Darjeeling
Under 15 Boys Doubles Champion – Sagyol Lepcha + Dawa G Sherpa from Darjeeling

Under 19 Women’s Singles Champion – Palpasha Gurung from Darjeeling
Under 19 Women’s Doubles Champion – Ankita Chettri + Sabrina Dewan from Darjeeling
Under 19 Men’s Singles Champion – Manish Chhetri from Darjeeling
Under 19 Men’s Doubles Champion – Manish Chettri + Avilash Darnal from Darjeleing

Open Women’s Singles Champion – Asisha Lepcha from Darjeeling (She is also the NB University Champion)

Open Women’s Doubles Champion – Kabya Mukhia + Palpasa Gurung

Open Men’s Singles Champion – Sagar Pradhan from Darjeeling

Open Men’s Doubles Champion – Prabin Tamang + Sagar Pradhan from Darjeeling

All the Single’s Tournament Winners were awarded a Trophy, Certificate and Rs 10,000 cash prize, while the Double’s Winners were awarded a Trophy, Certificate and Rs 5,000 cash prize

Congrats everyone who participated in the tournament, wining and losing is part of the game... its participating with all your heart that matters.

[Pics via: DT and HD}

SSB inaugurates toll free number to inform anti national activities on crimes

Shri Bansidhar Sharma IPS Director General SSB inaugurates toll free number to inform anti national activities on crimes
Shri Bansidhar Sharma IPS Director General, Sashastra Seema Bal today inaugurated 24x7 SSB toll free number 1800-345-325-7 for use by the general public in order to communicate information regarding anti national activities on crimes like smuggling of Narcotics, Arms and Ammunition, FICN, Human Trafficking, seek assistance for free operation of Cleft Lip and Palate and requirement of Aids and Appliances for physically challenged persons.



Shri B D Sharma was on a three day visit to Siliguri Frontier of SSB from 18th to 20th October 14 and visited border out posts at Jayanti, Nayabasti, Rangamati, Khokla, Jaigaon and Bindu on Indo-Bhutan border of Jalpaiguri district alongwith Shri Kuldiep Singh, IPS IG Siliguri Frontier to take stock of the security senerio and preparedness of the Force personnel. He also interacted with the villagers and enquired if they had any complains about the SSB personnel at Jayanti, Nayabasti, and Bindu during the Free Medical and Animal Care programmes. The people instead expressed satisfaction with SSB and sought help for establishing a Hospital and include their youth in SSBs ‘Discovering India’ study tour programmes. At BOP Bindu, Shri Sharma also inaugurated a Jawan Barrack for the SSB personnel. During his visit he also instructed local Commanders to laise with Nationalized Banks of the area to facilate implementation of Prime Ministers ‘Jan Dhan Yojana’. Shri Sharma also intracted with the Jawans during Sainik Sammelan at BOP Jayanti and Nayabasti and took stock of their problems.



                     DG, SSB today also inaugurated a modern Conference Room at Siliguri Frontier and held a high level meeting with the field Officers of the frontier and review the security senario of the Indo Nepal and Indo Bhutan order. Shri Kuldiep Singh, IPS, IG SSB Siliguri Frontier alongwith Shri K. C. Dobhal, DIG, Siliguri Frontier, Shri Roop Singh, DIG, Gangtok Sector, Shri H.S Gaddey, DIG Jalpaiguri Sector and all Officers of SSB interacted with DG, SSB during the Conference. Apart from this, during his visit he also interacted with the Divisional Commissioner of Jalpaiguri, the Commissioner of Police, Siliguri and other Civil Administration authorities to discus security related issues of the border.



While speaking with the media persons during the Press Conference held at Siliguri Frontier, Shri B. D. Sharma emphasized upon the need for SSB personnel to maintain cordial relations with the border people. To translate the idea into action he decleared some new programmes i.e., adoption of villages and schools, construction of toilets for the girl students in schools, felicitate students who secured the highest marks in board examination, assistance for cleft lip and cleft plate operations, distribution of Aids & Appliances for the physically challenged persons, etc.

Governor Kesharinath Tripathi visits Darjeeling culture and tourism fest

Governor Kesharinath Tripathi visits Darjeeling culture and tourism fest
Commending the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) for organizing the month long Culture and Tourism Festival, Bengal Governor Kesharinath Tripathi on Sunday said the initiative would help bond the hills with other parts of the country.
The Governor during the day attended the month-long festival which started from October 8 and will continue till November 7. “I feel happy to be present for this festival and thank the GTA for inviting me. I extend my wishes for the event’s success,” he said, after receiving a memento from GTA chief executive Bimal Gurung.
Lauding the performances of various hills communities, the Governor said, “In Darjeeling we are able to witness unity in diversity of different culture, tradition and emotions which attract tourists. I feel that this event is an effort of a place to bond with other states of the country”. He added, “The artists and children participating in the event have left a deep impression on me with their performance. It is a memory that I will cherish and take back with me”.
Performers of the information and cultural affairs department of the GTA and various dance academies showcased various culture and tradition through their dance and songs which the Governor keenly watched.
In his speech, Tripathi also pointed to the unique nature of the Hills. “Darjeeling is known for its three T’s-tea, timber and tourism- but I want to add three C’s. They are culture, cooperation and co-existence which makes Darjeeling what it is and people from across the country and abroad visit it often,” the Governor said.
The Bengal Governor also launched the official website- www.gta-darjeeling.org- of the GTA, today. Tomorrow afternoon, Tripathi will attend the Mirik chapter of the cultural and tourism festival before heading back to Kolkata. (EOIC)

GTA Darjeeling to ban plastic, gutkha from Oct 28

GTA Darjeeling to ban plastic, gutkha from Oct 28
The Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) has decided to enforce ban on use of plastic and gutkhas in the hills from October 28 and has directed the municipality to frame new by-laws in this regard.
Since the municipality is a transferred subject, the GTA has empowered it to enforce the ban along with fine and even revoking licenses of traders violating the order.
On the sideline of meeting to discuss the implementation of the Swach Bharat Abhiyan in Darjeeling, GTA executive member Roshan Giri said, “We have taken a decision to ban use of plastics and gutkhas in the hills. The use of plastics in any form is harmful in hilly areas, besides intake of gutkhas is dangerous to health”.
The GTA will form a core committee comprising 50 members in each of the three sub-divisions including in the foothills of Mirik. “The committee members will be responsible to ensure traders are not using plastics. They will basically be checking every shop in their respective area to see traders are not using plastics,” Giri said.
In fact, the municipality will be serving notices to the traders from Monday informing about the ban order. “We will serve notices to the traders of the town from tomorrow. They will be informed about the ban and also the consequences which include fine and revoke of license if they are found violating the order,” Darjeeling municipality chairman Amar Singh Rai said on Sunday.
However, the municipality has not yet decided on the fine amount. “We will first have to chalk out new by-laws and modalities to enforce the ban and also the amount of fine to impose. This will take some time but we will try to make it soon,” Singh said.
Incidentally, some years ago the Darjeeling municipality had taken the initiative to enforce ban on use of plastics. It had also made Chowrastha, a popular Hill promenade a no smoking and spit free zone. It had levied fines too. But, the initiative fizzled out after a couple of month.
It may be mentioned that neighbouring Sikkim has been declared a plastic-free state and the ban on the use of plastics has been enforced with a reasonable degree of success.
The GTA will kick-start the Swach Bharat Abhiyan from October 28 in the entire Hills area as a result being the first district in Bengal. For this purpose the council body has asked all the GTA Sabhasads, the four municipality chairmen, schools and colleges and various associations to participate to make the campaign a success. (EOIC)

Six year old Indian boy successfully climbs Kalapatthar peak

6 year old Indian boy successfully climbs Kalapatthar peak
An Indian boy just short of six years of age claimed to have set a new world record by successfully climbing Kalapatthar peak, some 200 metre above the base camp of Mount Everest in Nepal.
Harshit Saumitra, the son a famous mountaineer from India, reached 5,554 m high Kalapatthar on October 17.
Harshit's climbing team included his father Rajeev Saumitra and two Sherpa guides.
Harshit had embarked towards the Everest base camp on October 7, when he landed at Lukla Airport by a helicopter.
It took the boy 10 days to reach the base camp, for which grown-up people take seven days.
"I had taken special precaution for his safety and his health condition is perfectly sound," said his father.
Harshit was moving towards the base camp located in North-East Nepal at a time when dozens of people, mostly foreigners, lost their lives in the Himalayas, due to snow blizzard in North-West Nepal.
"We took two days' rest at a tent on way to the base camp to protect from the blizzard," Rajeev said.
He has not shown any symptoms of headache or high altitude sickness during the climbing, despite his young age, he added.
"Jay Hind, India is the great," Harshit said waving the Indian tri-colour after reaching Kalapatthar.
The peak is higher than the highest peaks of three continents, Europe's Mount Blanc (4,810 m), Antartica's Vinson Massif (4,892 m) and Australia's Punack Jaya or Carstensz Pyramid (4,884 m).
Harshit has set a world record by breaking earlier records, claimed his father Rajeev at a Press conference in Kathmandu.
The boy had broken the record set by seven-year-old Aryan Balaji, another Indian boy, who had reached the Everest base camp and Kalapatthar in May 2012.
Harshit's father said that he will start the process of registering the name of Harshit for Limca Book of Records from tomorrow.
"We will provide all the evidences including his birth certificate and the video clippings of the climbing," he said.
"We are also considering to apply for the Guinness World Records for our claim of setting a world record shortly," he added. PTI

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