NMA Election: Santabir Lama’s panel file nominations

Incumbent 1st vice president Santabir Lama has filed nomination for the post of president of Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA).

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Santabir Lama’s panel announcing candidacy for upcoming election of Nepal Mountaineering Association.

Incumbent 1st vice president Santabir Lama has filed nomination for the post of president of Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA).

Lama, flanked by members of his panel, filed nomination at the NMA Secretariat in Nagpokhari on August 1. Diwas Bikram Shah, Maya Sherpa, Bodh Raj Bhandari, Tika Ram Gurung and Sudarshan Neupane for the post of first vice president, second vice president, general secretary, secretary and treasurer, respectively. Similarly, Binaya Shakya, Suman Prasad Neupane, Durga Shrestha, Shiva Bahadur Sapkota, Singi Lama, Mingmar Sherpa, Pasang Tendi Sherpa, Thakur Prasad Sapkota and Sanjeev Gurung are the candidates of executive members from Lama’s panel.

Lama’s panel has received backing of tourism entrepreneurs close to CPN-UML and UCPN (Maoist Center).

This means two separate panels will contest in the election for the new executive committee of NMA scheduled to be held in Kathmandu on August 5. Immediate Past President Zimba Zangbu Sherpa has fielded a 15-member team in the election.

 

 

I will promote NMA as a true alpine club

 

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Santabir Lama

Why did you announce candidacy for the post of president of NMA?

My candidacy is to end the ongoing oligarchy system in the Nepal Mountaineering Association. NMA is not like a property where someone is selected as heir. In the past three decades, we saw leadership passed to near and dear ones of powerful. I want to end this practice. My mission is to develop NMA as a common forum of climbers, mountaineers, instructors and entrepreneurs, among others.

How is your opponent?

There are two candidates in the race. The incumbent president chose some as heir to lead the association. It is not acceptable to us. NMA is in need of a capable leader, not someone who uses others’ ladders to reach the post. My opponent has received backing of the incumbent president. But I am not worried. I have support of climbers, instructors, mountain experts and adventure operators who want to see change in the NMA.

What will be your programs if you are elected to the post?

My team has elected a list of programs and activities that will be implemented if my team wins the election. The first thing that I will do is use the good relation that NMA enjoys with UIAA, UAAA and other alpine clubs for development and promotion of adventure tourism industry. There are certain issues like social security of climbers, insurance for mountain workers and trainings to produce trained hands. Everyone should have access to these facilities. Existing leadership of NMA is providing these facilities only to people close to them. This practice should end. This practice should end. I will develop NMA as ‘our’ institution, not ‘my’.

Similarly, our team will take needful initiation to promote unclimbed peaks. We have 15 peaks above 8,000 meters, but only eight of them have received international recognition. I will lobby with the concerned bodies to get recognition for all these peaks. Similarly, we will work to promote and develop adventure tourism sector. I will also trim foreign trips of the association.

Any concluding remarks?

We have formed an inclusive team. If I am elected, I will streamline the management of NMA, end irregularities, and promote it as a true alpine club in the country.

 

 

 

HRA to build International Rescue Center

Himalayan Rescue Association (HRA) has said that it was establishing International Rescue Center in Kathmandu.

JAT

A delegation of Journalists Association for Tourism-Nepal (JAT-Nepal) in an interaction with office-bearers of Himalayan Rescue Assocaition (HRA) in Kathmandu on Thursday.

Himalayan Rescue Association (HRA) has said that it was establishing International Rescue Center in Kathmandu.

In a meeting with the delegation of Journalists’ Association for Tourism (JAT)-Nepal in Kathmandu on Thursday, HRA President said that the center to be built in four ropanis of land in Ramnagar, Bouddha, will have all modern amenities.

Foundation stone for the building has already been laid, according to Bhatta.

The center is estimated to cost Rs 75 million.

Meanwhile, HRA has said that it would make health camps that it has been organizing for trekkers and support staff in the Nepal Himalayas more effective. HRA General Secretary Prithvi Shrestha said that HRA has permanent health camps in Manang and Pheriche of Everest region. It has been providing free health service to trekkers and Nepali support staff as well as locals of the area. “We have also been organizing health camps for pilgrims and Yarsagumba harvesters, among others or as per the needed. Likewise, we have also been organizing health camp in the Everest Base Camp in the spring season,” he added.

Speaking at the program, JAT Nepal President Devi Prasad Pant praised the efforts played by HRA in making mountain tourism in Nepal safe. He also underlined the need for concerted efforts of all stakeholders to bring more tourists to the country.

Himalayan Travel Mart concludes on a positive note

Himalayan Travel Mart (HTM) 2017 has concluded in Kathmandu on a promising note.

By Kishor Basnyat/eTravelPress

HTM1

President Bidhya Devi Bhandari inaugurates the Himalayan Travel Mart.

Himalayan Travel Mart (HTM) 2017 has concluded in Kathmandu on a promising note.

Commenting on the mart, renowned travel entrepreneurs and personalities have focused on integrated approach and joint efforts to develop tourism industry keeping in view the changing travel trends in hospitality industry in the world. Similarly, keynote speakers representing different international tourism organizations focused on the need to forge collective efforts and make effective use of social media to get more tourists.

The three-day mart was inaugurated by President Bidya Devi Bhandari amid a colorful ceremony at Soaltee Crowne Plaza, Kathmandu. In her inaugural address, the President said that she was hopeful that the HTM, which was organized with the objective of promoting Nepal as the gateway to the Himalays, would contribute to promote Nepal’s tourism all over the world.

Speaking at the inaugural ceremony, Ashwini Lobani, the managing director of Air India, suggested Nepali travel fraternity to focus on information technology, security and connectivity, as well as development of infrastructure to get more benefits from tourism.

At the program, tourism secretary Shankar Prasad Adhikary, who is also the chairman of the HTM Organizing Committee, made a presentation on ‘Nepal, Gateway to the Himalaya’, where he talked about Nepal’s major tourism products and services.

Similarly, Andrew Jones, the immediate past chairman of Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), said the HTM was a continuation of PATA’s commitment to the development of responsible and sustainable tourism in Nepal and the region.

Likewise, President of Adventure Tour Operators Association of India, Swadesh Kumar, highlighted on different aspects of fastest adventure tourism sector and stressed the ensure safety standards.

Another attraction of the event, was a fireside chat between PATA CEO Mario Hardy and CEO of NTB Deepak Raj Joshi. The chat was moderated by BBC correspondent Yogita Limahe. The chat focused on the role of social media in tourism promotion.

In the Himalayan Tourism Conference, which was organized on the sidelines of the event, global editor of WikiTrends –US, Daniel Levine; leader of the first Singapore Everest Expedition 1998, David Lim; founder of Mountain High, Dubai, Julie Lewis; former CEO of NTB, Prachanda Man Shrestha, chairman of Stic Travel Group of India, Subash Goyal; hotelier and motivational speaker of Thailand, Bert Van Walbeek; and founder of Mountain Travel and promoter of Nepal tourism, Robin Marston, presented their papers on Himalayan tourism , mountaineering  and development .

In the second session of the conference, PATA CEO, Mario Hardy; Hong Kong-based chief of destination marketing and sales at Trip Advisor, Sarah Matthews; founder and CEO of e-Tourism Frontiers of South Africa, Damian Cook; and President of Tang Dynasty Tours-China, Michael Zhou presented their papers on innovation and marketing.

Meanwhile, Himalayan Travel Mart (HTM) 2017 was organized at Park Village Resort, Budhanilkantha, on June 1. More than 100 international bloggers and journalists attended the conference. Most of them also participated in the pre-mart tours, travelling to different parts of the country. They also shared their travel experiences at the program.

Buyers of 53 countries from Asia, Europe, North America, South America and Australia attended the B2B session. There were 43 seller companies.

Shrestha, Basi win TAAN Int’l Langtang Marathon

Hom Lal Shrestha and Sarita Basi – both from Nepal Army – have won the men’s and women’s category, respectively, of 2nd Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) International Langtang Marathon held in Langtang Region of Rasuwa district on April 25.

Langtang Marathon

Athletes post for a photo before the inauguration of 2nd TAAN Int’l Langtang Marathon in Kyanjing Gompa, Rasuwa, on April 25. (Photo: TAAN)

Hom Lal Shrestha and Sarita Basi – both from Nepal Army – have won the men’s and women’s category, respectively, of 2nd Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) International Langtang Marathon held in Langtang Region of Rasuwa district on April 25.
While Shrestha completed the 42.5 kilometers marathon in 3 hours and 34 minutes, it took 21-year-old Basi 5 hours and 13 minutes to reach the finishing line.
Similarly, Rajan Khatri (3 hours and 37 minutes) and Bed Bahadur Sunuwar (3 hours and 38 minute) finished the race in second and third positions, respectively, in the men’s category. Likewise, Resu Basnet (5 hours and 16 minutes) and Pushpa Bhandari (5 hours and 28 minutes) were first runner-up and second runner-up, respectively, in the women’s category.
Keshav Bahadur Bista, the member secretary of Nepal Sports Council (NSC) handed over cash prize, medal and certificates to winners, first runners-up and second runners-up. While the winners in both the categories took home cash prize of Rs 100,000, the first runner-ups and second runner-ups of both the categories became richer by Rs 75,000 and Rs 50,000, respectively.
Altogether 102 participants – 88 male and 14 female athletes – participated in the event that began at Kyanjin Gompa and passed through Langtang village, Lama Hotel, Rimche, Sherpa Gaon and Bridim before concluding at Syafrubesi.
According to the organizer, the marathon was organized to disseminate the message world over that Langtang Region as a safe destination for trekkers. Also, the event was aimed at encouraging the local tourism entrepreneurs to revive their business, which was completely halted following the devastating earthquakes of 2015.
TAAN had organized half-marathon in the region in 2016. The half-marathon began at the Gosaikunda Lake and concluded at Dhunche – the district headquarters of Rasuwa.

NATTA condemns CAAN’s decision to distribute bonus

Nepal Association of Tour and Travel Agents (NATTA) has condemned the decision to distribute bonus to the staffers of Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN).

Nnattaepal Association of Tour and Travel Agents (NATTA) has condemned the decision to distribute bonus to the staffers of Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN).

Issuing a statement on Monday, the umbrella association of Nepali travel agents said that the decision taken by former tourism minister Jeevan Bahadur Shahi, who also chairs the board of directors of CAAN, was against CAAN Act 1996, Bonus Act 1973 and Bonus Rules 1982.

“The decision has thrown cold water on our hope that CAAN would spend the money collected from air passengers to build new airports, upgrade facilities at existing airports and build necessary infrastructure at Tribhuvan International Airport (TIA), NATTA said.

NATTA has also reminded that the European Union (EU) and International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) have kept Nepali airlines in blacklist as CAAN has not upgraded infrastructure of TIA and improved safety standards.