KATHMANDU — 296th Prithvi Jayanti is being celebrated across the country marking the contribution of Late King Prithvi Narayan Shah in the unification of Nepal.
As the country is celebrating 296th birth anniversary of King Prithvi Narayan Shah and National Unification Day today, it is a sombre occasion for all Nepalis to objectively recognise the significance of the Nepali nationhood and the national rebuilding process in the changed context.
This discourse of national rebuilding calls for a thorough and candid evaluation of the role of Prithvi Narayan Shah, the architect and unifier of modern Nepal, more than ever with the country transforming into a federal democratic republic.
Every year, Poush 27 of Nepali calendar marks the birth anniversary of Late King Shah. He is credited with starting the campaign for a reunification of Nepal. Born in 1723 (1779 BS) on the same day, Late King Shah became king of Gorkha at the age of 20.
King Prithvi valued his people and enjoyed talking to his subjects about their general concerns. This practice helped him to build a rapport with his people and helped him to understand the requirements of the citizens. King Shah sealed his borders and maintained a peaceful environment except for distant relations with the British, who were refusing to trade with Nepal at the time.
Although, the people’s war, waged by the then CPN (Maoist),started on the foundation of public grievances of social, cultural and other forms of discrimination by the then state, later rallied around on the identity issue. The proponents of the people’s war strongly raised the ethnic issues and banked on it to mobilise public support for their cause.
King Shah had conceptualized the saying, “Nepal is a garden of four castes and 36 sub-castes” which reflects the diversity and culture of Nepal and is equally relevant in present time as well. He is said to have advocated for inclusive Nepal and respected culture of various communities.
The birth anniversary of late king Shah used to be marked as the National Unification Day at the state level in the past too. But the successive governments after 2006 dropped the idea, although some political parties and groups continued with the tradition on their own.
But, the present government this time has announced a public holiday today on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Shah.
Marking the same occasion, President Bidya Devi Bhandari attended a special program organized in the capital today. Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, chief of constitutional bodies, Ministers and other dignitaries attended the program.
On the occasion, President Bhandari and Prime Minister along with other dignitaries offered wreath in the statue of the Late King Shah situated at the western gate of Singha Durbar.
26 rhinos die in a year in CNP
CHITWAN — Chitwan National Park (CNP) witnessed zero poaching of endangered one-horned rhinoceros in the fiscal year 2074/75. But the death of the rhinos by natural causes has increased recently, as the park has lost a total of 26 rhinos to various causes in this period.
26 rhinos died from various reasons including natural disaster in the period, according to the CNP information officer, Nurendra Aryal.
Four rhinos were killed in flood-related incidents with two caught in a marsh caused by the flooding while two were swept away by flood waters, he informed.
Fighting, delivery complications (in case of some female rhinos) and aging are other reasons behind the deaths of a noticeable number of this endangered wildlife last fiscal year. Three female rhinos succumbed to child delivery complications in this period. They died after failing to give birth to their babies.
The park however has recorded no case of rhino poaching since April 8, 2017.However, the number of rhino deaths due to other reasons was slightly up in the year compared to the previous year, according to the CNP Information Officer Aryal.
This figure is followed by 25 and 15 rhino deaths in previous two fiscal years respectively.
The natural causes led to the death of 24 rhinos in the fiscal year 2073/74 and 15 in 2072/73.
The need of a study was felt to seek potential ways for minimising the death risk among rhinos with their death toll increasing every year, CNP chief conservation officer, Bed Kumar Dhakal said. A squad from the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation has already begun a study to this end.
The CNP latest details mentioned about 605 rhinos here.
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