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Gopal Yonjan's musical works archiving in Cornell University Library in US

Gopal Yonjan
Here's high quality news for Nepali music lovers and others alike. Cornell University Library in the US is archiving music maestro Gopal Yonjan's musical works. To be housed in its Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections in the Carl A Kroch Library, the archive will include audio and video recordings, digital files, notebooks, instruments, photographs and other publications documenting the late Yonjan's life and work.

According to Renchin Yonjon, the maestro's wife, Cornell University Library will care for the archive in such a manner that will provide for its permanent physical preservation and make it readily available for research.

"Besides being preserved in their original form, Yonjan's works will be translated into English, along with musical notations. Cornell University will further share these materials for scholarly and educational use free of charge. It is estimated that it will take 18 months to two years for the archive to be complete and ready for audiences world-wide," Yonjan said from Kathmandu, Nepal, where she is based now.

According to her, she has gifted all relevant materials to the university that is an American private Ivy League and federal landgrant research university in Ithaca, New York.

"The intellectual property right will remain with the creator and/or nominated legal heir or organization," she said.

The development coincides with the72nd birth anniversary of Yonjan.

"This is the first time that a Nepali artist's musical works are being documented in totality by any International Institution. It is a matter of great pride not only for Gopal Yonjan but also for all Nepalis as a whole," she added.

Yonjan, one of the most prominent Nepali music composers, directors, lyricists, singers and arrangers in the history of Nepali music, was born in Okaytee Tea Estate in Mirik in Darjeeling on August 26, 1943, while he passed away in Kathmandu in May 20, 1997.

Yonjan composed songs in 16 different categories ranging from philosophical, spiritual, nationalistic, romantic, dancing melodies, folk, songs for women and children, while he lent music to 13 films; four dramas and two ballads.

In Darjeeling, another music legend and Yonjan's brother, Karma Yonjan, said the archival in the American university of a man who began his music career in Darjeeling and who has contributed a lot to the growth of Arts in the Hills is a moment of pride for all Hill people.

"This is a historic moment for music in Darjeeling and for the entire region," he said.

"Whatever Gopal did, he took Darjeeling's name to greater heights," said Yonjan, who began his musical career together with Gopal Yonjan in the hills of Darjeeling, and under the able guidance of another music great, Amber Gurung. "The music Gopal made was of very high quality, while he was able to attain greater heights after he moved to Kathmandu," Yonjan added.(sns)

GTA rejects Union government proposal to set up Sikkim university campus in Darjeeling

temporary office of the Sikkim University in Gangtok
The Union government had proposed to set up a campus of Sikkim University in Darjeeling, much to the annoyance of the GTA which has been lobbying New Delhi to establish a central university in the hills.

The proposal was rejected outright by the GTA.

The Union human resource development department had sent a letter to the GTA as well as the Sikkim University in March, asking them to consider the setting up of a campus of the varsity in Darjeeling. The Sikkim University is a central university established in 2007 through an Act passed by Parliament.

Roshan Giri, GTA executive Sabha member in charge of education, said the hill body had rejected the centre's suggestion. "Since our demand is for a central university, we immediately opposed the proposal," he said.

Sources said the Sikkim government, too, had objected to the proposal. The Sikkim University forwarded the opinions of its faculty members, who had either supported or opposed the idea. #Mamata Banerjee had recently announced a campus of Presidency University at Dow Hill in Kurseong and the foundation stone is likely to be laid on September 16.

The GTA believes any move to launch the campuses of other universities in the hills will scuttle the autonomous body's efforts to get a central varsity established in the region. Establishment of a central university is among a set of project proposals for the hill body in annexure 'B2' of the GTA memorandum of agreement signed by the Centre, state government and the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha.

Trilok Kumar Dewan, Darjeeling MLA, said: "A campus cannot substitute for a central university. First, we have to get through the central university demand. If there are a number of campuses for higher education in the three hill subdivisions of Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Kurseong, the demand for establishing a central university will definitely lose steam."

The GTA chief executive, Bimal Gurung, had last week requested the chief minister to reconsider the decision to set up the campus of the Presidency University, as "it may have an adverse impact and the Centre may back out on the decision on the establishment of the Central University".

Giri also said today that opposition to the campus of the Presidency University was not driven by any other reason than the fear that it would dilute the demand for the central university in the hills. "That is why we had opposed the proposal for a Sikkim University campus earlier," said Giri.

P.D. Rai, Sikkim MP, said: "I don't know whether Sikkim government has received such a proposal. However, my first comment would be, why should the GTA be happy with a campus when they are demanding a central university?"

In July, the GTA submitted a detailed project report for a central university to the Union HRD ministry. The report was prepared by Noida-based EdCIL (India) Limited, a government of India enterprise. The faculty members of the Sikkim University also helped in preparing the report.

An academician in the hills said the Centre's proposal had both positive and negative messages. "The fact that the Centre sent a proposal to start a campus of Sikkim University in Darjeeling indicates that the Centre believes that the demand for the central varsity needs to be addressed. However, the flip side of the proposal is that a campus cannot fully address the demand for a separate university."#(TT)

District administration issues notice to high-rise illegal building owners

under-construction building on Nehru Road  Darjeeling
The Darjeeling municipality is finding itself squashed between the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration and the state government over the issue of implementing building rules as per the Bengal Municipality Act. The district administration has issued a conditional order to six owners found flouting building norms and sought explanations. Darjeeling DM Anurag Srivastav said the notice was issued following complaints reported by the police. “Under section 133 of the CrPc, magistrates have the power to issue orders if they feel human lives are in danger. In this case, the huge structures in town are the cause of the danger. We have issued a conditional order to owners of six buildings on the basis of complaints filed by the police,” he said.
The DM, however, said the conditional order implies the owners will need to submit building permission papers even as the stay is in place. “We will first see if the building plans and the required permission from the municipality are proper. We will take action, including demolition of the structures only if they are found to be violating the set norms,” Srivastav said. According to the police complaint, two under-construction buildings, one at Nehru Road leading to Chowrastha and the other on Gandhi Road, and another three under-construction buildings on Hooker Road, Mall Road and close to the Governor’s House, the latter being a school, and another at the Lal Dhiki in the market area, were found to be flouting the rules. The district administration has also sought the municipality’s reports and they will have to be placed before the SDO on September 10. Meantime, the Darjeeling municipality today said different cases have been mentioned in the police report.  “The district administration has filed cases ranging from security concerns to the Governor’s House to encroachment (Lal Dhiki) to illegal heights. At this point of time, we are sandwiched between the state government and the GTA and are at a loss as to what is to be done,” bemoaned Darjeeling municipality chairman Amar Singh Rai. The civic body’s predicament comes in the wake of a directive by the GTA allowing construction of buildings up to a maximum height of 14.5 metres as compared to the set norm of 11.5 metres set by the Bengal Municipality Act. During a meeting with the chairmen of the four municipalities of the hills on August 16, GTA chief executive Bimal Gurung had said structures crossing the 11.5m mark would not be demolished and would be allowed up to 14.5m instead. This was after the Darjeeling municipality started a survey to identify illegal high-rises for dismantling. In fact, the municipality had already started demolishing two buildings in the town area last month. Following a survey, the civic body has found more than 300 structures in town violating the building norms. “We will place the resolution taken on August 16 before the GTA and the state government and wait for further directions from both sides,” said Rai. It is learnt that GTA officials met the state chief secretary last week in Kolkata and requested him to direct the Darjeeling DM and the SP to consult the municipality before taking any further action on the matter. (EOIC)

मङपुमा क्लीन दार्जीलिङ ग्रीन दार्जीलिङ विषयमा कार्यक्रम

Clean Darjeeling Green Darjeeling
सोमबारको दिन यहाको सन्त मंगल एकाडमीको प्रागणमा स्वच्छ दार्जीलिङ अनि हरित दार्जीलिङ बिषयमा जनचेतनामुलक कार्यक्रम सम्पन्न भयो | जिल्ला सूचना एवं साँस्कृतिक विभाग दार्जीलिङद्वरा  आयोजित उक्त कार्यक्रममा लोक प्रसार प्रकल्पका कलाकारहरुले उक्त विषयमाथि गीत  एवं नाटक प्रस्तुत गरे | कार्यक्रम संचालक  पदम बाराईलीले सर्वप्रथम सबै सबैलाई स्वागत जनाउदै कार्यक्रमको औचित्य बारे प्रकाश पारे | त्यसपछि क्रमैले कलाकार बिकाश राई,गीता राई,एवं डी.के बिश्वद्वरा जनचेतनामुलक गीत प्रस्तुत गरियो भने स्वच्छ दार्जीलिङ अनि हरियो दार्जीलिङ माथि लघु नाटक प्रस्तुत गरियो | सन्तबहादुर राईद्वरा लिखित उक्त नाटकमा पवन गुरुङ,कर्मसिह गुरुङ उमेश गुरुङ,पवन शर्मा उपासना गुरुङ,र उमा गुरुङले भाग लिएका थिए | अन्तमा कार्यक्रम सम्बन्धमा बिधालयका प्राचार्य मन्जित थापाले दुई शब्द राखे पछि पदमबराईलीले सकुलका शिक्षक शिक्षिकागण एवं छात्र छात्रावर्गलाई आभार व्यक्त गर्दे कार्यक्रमको अन्त गरियो |

गोजमुमो सिम्ले शाखा बिघटन भएको नारी मोर्चा द्वारा खण्डन

Gorkha Janmukti Morcha Flag
केही दिन अघि मंग्पूको सिम्ले शाखाको सम्पूर्ण गोजमुमो पार्टी, नारी मोर्चा, युवा मोर्चा विघटन भएको समचारलाई नारी मोर्चा सिम्ले शाखा सचिव शोभा मंगर अनि सभानेत्री कमलमाया राईले कडा शब्दमा खण्डन गर्दै स्पष्टिकरण दिएका छन् | उनीहरुले यसलाई गाउँका आफ्नै स्वार्थ मात्र हेर्ने केही कुतत्वहरुले पार्टीलाई बद्नाम गर्ने षड्यन्त्र मात्र गरेका हुन भनेका छन् | आफूहरु उपस्थित नभएको सभामा उनीहरुको आफ्नै इच्छाले नाम हाल्दै अन्यलाई पनि बद्नाम गर्ने कोशिश गरेको छ भनी बताउंदै नारी मोर्चा नेत्रीहरु उपस्थित नरहेको सभामा कसरी नारी मोर्चा विघटन भयो भन्दै प्रश्न गरेका छन् | गोजमुमो सिम्ले शाखा नारी मोर्चा अन्य कुरोतिर नभुलिएर गोर्खाल्याण्डको निम्ति सदैव समर्पित भएको हुँदा संगठनलाई विघटन गर्ने कुरै आउँदैन भनेका छन् | गाउँमा बिकाश भएन भन्ने कुरोहरु अनि सभासद आउँदैनन् भन्ने सबै आरोपहरु सरासर झुटो रहेको बताउंदै गाउँमा सार्वजनिक भवन, बाटो आदिको कामहरु सभासदकै सफल नेतृत्व अनि पारदर्शीताको नतिजा स्वरूप काम भइरहेको साथै सभासदको पनि कति आफ्नै व्यस्तताहरु हुने हुनाले एकोहोरो आउन नसक्ने भएपनि आफूहरुलाई परिआएको हरेक सुख – दु:खमा सभासद आएको सचिव शोभा मंगरले बताएका छन् | अन्तमा यस घटनालाई झुटो बताउंदै आफुहरु एक इन्च पनि नडगमगाई गोजमुमोलाई समर्थन गरिनै रहेको बताउंदै गाउँका साधारण जनताहरु यस्ता गलत संदेश अनि मानिसहरु देखि सतर्क रहने अपिल गरेका छन् |    

GJMM, DTDPLU not to support country-wide bandh on 2 sept

Roshan Giri
The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha today said it would not support the country-wide bandh jointly called by the Left Front and the Congress on September 2 to protest the central government’s labour law and reforms that allegedly curb’s workers’ rights. GJM general secretary Roshan Giri issued a press statement to announce the party’s stand. “Being the principal political party in the hills, it is our responsibility to maintain the peaceful atmosphere that is presently prevailing. Also, we feel that bandhs will hamper the ongoing development work in Darjeeling,” he said. The trend in the Darjeeling hills has been to ignore strikes whenever they are called by mainstream political parties whatever be the issue. However, political analysts are of the opinion that the GJM does not want to antagonise both the BJP - its political ally - and the Trinamool Congress, with whom it has come close again. The GJM-affiliated Darjeeling Terai Dooars Plantation Labour Union (DTDPLU) also said it would not support Wednesday’s bandh referring to the BJP as an ally. “The GJM is part of the NDA government at the Centre. Moreover, we have our own issues that are being discussed with the state and the Centre,” said DTDLPU spokesperson Milan Pradhan. The Left Front’s strike call is being supported by several trade unions including that of the Congress party, alleging the Centre’s policies were anti-worker and leaning more towards the corporate sector. The DTDPLU is presently in a pact with the John Barla-led Adivasi Vikash Parishad of the Dooars to push for its own demands. “On August 22, we held a meeting with the AVP to take forward our demands related to tea garden workers of the hills and the plains from September onwards. It will be difficult to extend any support to the Left Front and Congress called bandh,” Pradhan reasoned.

The DTDPLU and the AVP’s demand include allocating patta (land rights) to tea garden workers, opening of closed gardens in the Dooars and implementation of the minimum wage act. In the hills alone, there are 87 tea gardens which employ more than 50,000 workers and this figure does not include their dependents.(EOI)

Dhruvatara - Darjeeling‬ made movie to release on september 18th

Dhruvatara - Darjeeling‬ Made Movie - In a far-flung village in the hills surrounding the Mirik Valley, where people are farmers and are dependent upon the mercies of nature and God, where young people work as farm hands or porters, a quite love story enfolds between two unlike souls. A quiet and a reserved man Dhruva and an equally beautiful and mysterious Tara. In this landscape of hills and rivers, men and their horses, joyous beats of Madal and Murali and far from the madding crowd, two people come to love each other as naturally as the forest spring, flowing eternally. But nature sets its own course and Time plays a helping hand.

Will Dhruva and Tara be able to win over the adversities of love and be together forever? Is it possible to cross the limits set by time and nature upon love? Will love really conquer all?

Come and see for yourself…

Director: Nikky Ngawang Golay
Producer: Rosedip K Sarki
Writer: Nikky Ngawang Golay
Choreographer: Bipen Basnet and Pravesh Golay Tamang
Production Manager: Prabhat Thapa
Cinematography: Chanchal Thapa

Company Credits:

Production Studio: Mughlan Films in association with Arvind Raj Productions.
News source: TDC)

Watch Video Below:
Dhruvatara - Darjeeling‬ Made Movie to Releasing on September 18th

GJMM to give own candidates for Siliguri Mahakuma Parishad (SMP) elections

Bimal Gurung
The Gorkha Jan Mukti Morcha (GJMM) and Gorkha Territorial Administration (GTA) chief Bimal Gurung announced on Sunday that the GJMM will be fielding its own candidates for the Siliguri Mahakuma Parishad (SMP) elections that are likely to be held on 3 October.

"GJMM has several supporters in the Terai region who have been extending full support to the Gorkhaland movement ever since the inception of the GJMM. Considering the views and aspirations of the people of the Terai region, GJMM has decided to field it's own party candidates in the upcoming SMP elections," Gurung said in a press release.

"The people of the Terai region have various problems, which can be solved only in a localized manner. The decision was taken by keeping this in mind," he added. According to Gurung, it was the unity of GJMM supporters that helped Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate SS Ahluwalia (Darjeeling MP) emerge victorious in the last Lok Sabha polls. "I have full hope that this time our candidates will emerge victorious as well," Gurung said. However, he did not disclose the names of the candidates.

Another regional party, the Kamtapur Progressive Party (KPP), which has a significant support base in the Matigara, Naxalbari, Kharibari and Phansidewa blocks in the plains, has said it will soon clear the air on whether it will support the BJP in the SMP elections or go it alone.

The State Election Commission (SEC) is likely to issue a notification for the SMP elections in the first week of September. The SEC has already informed anti-Trinamul political parties in writing that the SMP elections will be held on 3 October.

"The notification will be issued just a month before the 3 October polls, if things go in the right direction," SEC commissioner SR Upadhyay had told The Statesman on 18 August.(SNS)