Nepal's Environment
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Nepal Environment
Pashupatinath has become a vaste garbage dump
Pashupatinath More comfortable for tourists
Clean water at Pashupati temple area
Pashupatinat: Heritage site
Kathmandu Valle: Bleak outlook for environment
The Bagmati has become a vaste garbage dump
Bagmati river
Holy site: Pashupatinath

The country's most sacred river, the Bagmati, is in danger of being destroyed by pollution. The river is being used as a depository for sewage and garbage by the growing population fo the Kathmandu Valley.

Over the ages Nepalese monarchs have been cremated on its banks. The Bagmati was once used by thousands of Nepalese for recreational and religious purposes.

Celebrated in music, poetry and literature it is often referred to as the Ganges of Nepal. A lot of funeral ceremonies take place in Pashupatinath. Now the volume of the water had reduced to such extend that the river is no longer the big river that used to be.

Garbage dump
Garbage dump

Most of the waters are tapped by an increasing number of factories, especially carpet factories and households. So most of water is tapped before it reaches the river. household garbage comes from shops and houses and its brought in plastic bags and thrown here. The Bagmati is a huge rubbish dump effectively, crawling with flies and rubbish. The water is black. It is almost a dead river.

Battle to clean up

he scale of problems is recognized by the Nepalese government. The situation is critical that it will be very difficult for the government or any other agency to change the situation at Bagmati at once. Nepal is one of the poorest countries in the world and doesn't have the money to tackle other key environmental issues such as pollution and deforestation in the Himalayas. if the Bagmati is to cleaned up, it looks as if most of the money will have to come from overseas donors.


Pashupatinath area: More comfortable for tourists

Pashupatinath area looks cleaner than it was in the past. It is beggar-free too. No shops can be seen on the pavements of the roads within the periphery of Pashupati area. Thanks to the Pashupati Region Development Fund (PRDF), which has taken initiatives to upgrade the world heritage site.

Pashupati shops
A shopkeeper, who has been running a cosmetic shop at the Pashupati is happy to see the holy Pashupati area becomes cleaner. He is still happier to see his yard beggar-free whom he had to scold time and again as they used to harass his customers. He also points to the changes inside the temple. He feels comfortable to enter the temple since he has no longer to hear the calls of Brahmins nowdays to accept tika from their hands in return of dakshina, money to Brahamin.

he PRDF started action against encroachers of the roads within its premies by deploying a team of ten patrol guards from last May. Under these initiatives, the PRDF has prohibited all types of businesses on both sides of the roads within the Pashupati area and even beggars are not allowed to walk begging. As the street businesses and begging have been strictly checked, the streets of the area look cleaner now.

Pashupati brahmins
But the initiative has badly affected the beggars and the Brahmins who are living in and around the Pashupati temple for their livelihood. The guards on patrol even say that the number of beggars is also decreasing as they are finding it hard to maintain their lives by begging in the area. Now the beggars have been forced to live at Jamkeshori and Taxi Park of the Pashupati premises.

Other sufferers of the PRDF are the Brahmins who make their livelihood by offering tika to the pilgrims to the Pashupati temple.

he PRDF has also prohibited the Brahmins to sit with a view to offering tika. They are now forced to leave our profession since we are not allowed to offer tika in the vicinity of the temple. They do not make even a rupee some day. Some Brahmins have left the temple as they found their profession insecure to sustain their live.

November 2001


Urban squatters face risk Kathmandu Valley
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