NEPAL (/nəˈpɔːl/ ( listen ); Nepali : नेपाल Nepāl
), officially the FEDERAL DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF NEPAL (Nepali :
गणतन्त्र नेपाल Sanghiya Loktāntrik
Ganatantra Nepāl), is a landlocked central Himalayan country in
South Asia .
Nepal is divided into 7 states and 77 districts and 744
local units including 4 metropolises, 13 sub-metropolises, 246
municipal councils and 481 villages. It has a population of 26.4
million and is the 93rd largest country by area. Bordering
the north and
India in the south, east, and west, it is the largest
sovereign Himalayan state .
Nepal does not border
Bangladesh , which
is located within only 27 km (17 mi) of its southeastern tip. Neither
does it border
Bhutan due to the Indian state of
Sikkim being located
Nepal has a diverse geography , including fertile plains ,
subalpine forested hills, and eight of the world's ten tallest
mountains , including
Mount Everest , the highest point on Earth.
Kathmandu is the nation's capital and largest city.
Nepal is a
multiethnic nation with Nepali as the official language.
The territory of
Nepal has a recorded history since the Neolithic
age. The name "Nepal" is first recorded in texts from the
Vedic Age ,
the era which founded
Hinduism , the predominant religion of the
country. In the middle of the first millennium BCE,
Gautama Buddha ,
the founder of
Buddhism , was born in southern Nepal. Parts of
Nepal were intertwined with the culture of
Tibet . The
Kathmandu Valley in central
Nepal became known as
Nepal proper because
of its complex urban civilisation. It was the seat of the prosperous
Newar confederacy known as
Nepal Mandala . The highest elevation in
Mount Everest , Earth's highest mountain, rising 8,848 m
(29,029 ft) above sea level. The Himalayan branch of the ancient Silk
Road was dominated by the valley\'s traders . The cosmopolitan region
developed distinct traditional art and architecture . By the 18th
Gorkha Kingdom achieved the unification of
Nepal . The
Shah dynasty established the
Kingdom of Nepal and later formed an
alliance with the
British Empire , under its
Rana dynasty of premiers
. The country was never colonised but served as a buffer state between
China and Colonial India. In the 20th century,
its isolation and forged strong ties with regional powers.
Parliamentary democracy was introduced in 1951, but was twice
suspended by Nepalese monarchs in 1960 and 2005. The Nepalese Civil
War resulted in the proclamation of a republic in 2008, ending the
reign of the world's last
Nepal is a federal secular parliamentary republic . It has
seven states .
Nepal is a developing nation , ranking 144th on the
Human Development Index
Human Development Index (HDI) in 2016. The country struggles with the
transition from a monarchy to a republic. It also suffers from high
levels of hunger and poverty. Despite these challenges,
making steady progress, with the government declaring its commitment
to elevate the nation from least developed country status by 2022.
Nepal also has a vast potential to generate hydropower for export.
Nepal's foreign relations expanded after the Anglo-
Nepal Treaty of
1923 , which was recognised by the
League of Nations . After a Soviet
veto in 1949,
Nepal was admitted to the
United Nations in 1955.
Friendship treaties were signed with the Dominion of
India in 1950 and
China in 1960.
Nepal hosts the permanent
secretariat of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation
(SAARC), of which it is a founding member.
Nepal is also a member of
Non Aligned Movement and the
Bay of Bengal Initiative . The
Nepal is the fifth largest in
South Asia and is notable
Gurkha history, particularly during the world wars , and has
been a significant contributor to
United Nations peacekeeping
* 1 Etymology
* 2 History
* 2.1 Ancient
* 2.2 Medieval
Kingdom of Nepal (1768–2008)
* 2.4 Republicanization (2008)
* 3 Geography
* 3.1 Climate
* 3.2 Geology
* 3.3 Environment
* 4 Politics
* 4.1 Constitution
* 4.2 Government
* 4.2.1 Executive
* 184.108.40.206 Federal executive
* 220.127.116.11 State executive
* 4.2.2 Legislative
* 18.104.22.168 Federal legislature
* 22.214.171.124.1 House of Representatives
* 126.96.36.199.2 National Assembly
* 188.8.131.52 State legislature
* 4.2.3 Judiciary
* 4.3 Foreign relations
* 4.4 Military
* 4.5 States
* 4.6 Largest cities
* 5 Economy
* 6 Infrastructure
* 6.1 Energy
* 6.2 Transport
* 6.3 Telecommunications and mass media
* 6.4 Education
* 6.5 Health
* 6.6 Community forestry
* 7 Science and technology
* 8 Crime and law enforcement
* 9 Demographics
* 9.1 Languages
* 9.2 Religion
* 9.3 Largest cities
* 10 Culture
* 10.1 Holidays and festivals
* 10.2 Cuisine
* 10.3 Sports
* 10.4 Units of measurement
* 11 In popular media
* 11.1 Books
* 11.2 Films
* 12 Gallery
* 13 See also
* 14 References
* 15 Further reading
* 16 External links
Local legends have it that a
Hindu sage named "Ne" established
himself in the valley of
Kathmandu in prehistoric times, and that the
word "Nepal" came into existence as the place was protected ("pala" in
Pali ) by the sage "Nemi". It is mentioned in
Vedic texts that this
region was called
Nepal centuries ago. According to the Skanda Purana
, a rishi called "Nemi" used to live in the
Himalayas . In the
Pashupati Purana, he is mentioned as a saint and a protector. He is
said to have practised meditation at the Bagmati and Kesavati rivers
and to have taught there.
The name of the country is also identical in origin to the name of
Newar people . The terms "Nepāl", "Newār", "Newāl" and "Nepār"
are phonetically different forms of the same word, and instances of
the various forms appear in texts in different times in history. Nepal
is the learned
Sanskrit form and
Newar is the colloquial
Sanskrit inscription dated 512 CE found in Tistung, a valley to the
west of Kathmandu, contains the phrase "greetings to the Nepals"
indicating that the term "Nepal" was used to refer to both the country
and the people.
It has been suggested that "Nepal" may be a
"Newar", or "Newar" may be a later form of "Nepal". According to
another explanation, the words "Newar" and "Newari" are vulgarisms
arising from the mutation of P to V, and L to R.
History of Nepal
Lumbini , listed as the
Gautama Buddha by the
UNESCO World Heritage Convention
A ceremonial crown of Nepalese royalty
Neolithic tools found in the
Kathmandu Valley indicate that people
have been living in the Himalayan region for at least eleven thousand
years. From the ancient records it seems that
Nepal was originally
inhabited by the
Mongoloid people. According to B.H. Hodgson in 1847
the earliest inhabitants of
Nepal were properly the Kusunda people and
were properly of Proto-Australoid origin.
Nepal is first mentioned in the late
Vedic Atharvaveda Pariśiṣṭa
as a place exporting blankets , and in the post-
Upanishad . In
Allahabad Pillar it is mentioned as a
border country. The
Skanda Purana has a separate chapter known as
Nepal Mahatmya" which explains in more detail about the beauty and
power of Nepal.
Nepal is also mentioned in
Hindu texts such as the
Very little is known about the early history of Nepal, legends and
documented references reach far back to the 30th century BC. Gopal
Bansa , cow herding tribes are said to be one of the earliest
Kathmandu valley however the evidence and sources are
lacking. The earliest well known rulers of
Nepal were the Kirats or
Kiratis and often mentioned as
Kirata kingdom ) in Hindu
texts, documented references them ruling
Nepal from 3102 B.C. to 7th
century A.D. From various sources we can find the mentioning of 27 to
32 Kirati kings who had ruled over Nepal. Gopal genealogy mentions 32
Kirati Kings to have ruled over Nepal.
Around 500 BCE, small kingdoms and confederations of clans arose in
the southern regions of Nepal. From one of these, the
arose a prince who later renounced his status to lead an ascetic life,
Buddhism , and came to be known as Gautama Buddha
(traditionally dated 563–483 BCE).
By 250 BC, the southern regions had come under the influence of the
Maurya Empire of North
India and later became a vassal state under the
Gupta Empire in the 4th century AD.
There is a quite detailed description of the kingdom of
Nepal in the
account of the renowned Chinese Buddhist pilgrim monk
dating from about 645 CE. Stone inscriptions in the
are important sources for the history of Nepal.
The kings of Lichhavi dynasty have been found to rule
Nepal after the
Kirat monarchical dynasty. The context that ‘Suryavansi Kshetriyas
had established new regime by defeating the Kirats’ can be found in
some genealogies and Puranas. It is not clear yet that when the
Lichhavi dynasty was established in Nepal. According to the opinion of
Baburam Acharya, the prominent historian of Nepal, Lichhavies were
able to establish their independent Lichhavi rule by abolishing Kirati
state that prevailed in
Nepal around 250 AD.
The Licchavi dynasty went into decline in the late 8th century and
was followed by a
Thakuri kings ruled over the
country up to the middle of the 12th century A.D, King Raghav Dev is
said to have founded the ruling dynasty in October, 869 A.D. King
Raghav Dev also started the
Nepal Sambat .
Malla (Nepal) Tara, ca. 13th century, Nepal,
Walters Art Museum Basantpur royal complex
In the early 12th century, leaders emerged in far western
names ended with the
Sanskrit suffix malla ("wrestler"). These kings
consolidated their power and ruled over the next 200 years, until the
kingdom splintered into two dozen petty states. Another Malla dynasty
beginning with Jayasthiti emerged in the
Kathmandu valley in the late
14th century, and much of central
Nepal again came under a unified
rule. In 1482 the realm was divided into three kingdoms:
Patan , and
KINGDOM OF NEPAL (1768–2008)
Kingdom of Nepal
Sino-Nepalese War King
Tribhuvan giving an audience to British general
Claude Auchinleck at
the royal palace in Kathmandu, 1945
Elvis Presley with King
Queen Ratna of
Nepal in 1960 Prime Minister of
David Ben Gurion and
Prime Minister of Nepal
B. P. Koirala
In the mid-18th century,
Prithvi Narayan Shah , a
Gorkha king, set
out to put together what would become present-day Nepal. He embarked
on his mission by securing the neutrality of the bordering mountain
kingdoms. After several bloody battles and sieges, notably the Battle
of Kirtipur , he managed to conquer the
Kathmandu Valley in 1769. A
detailed account of Prithvi Narayan Shah's victory was written by
Father Giuseppe, an eyewitness to the war.
Gorkha dominion reached its height when the North Indian
territories of the Kumaon and Garhwal Kingdoms in the west to Sikkim
in the east came under
Nepal rule. At its maximum extent, Greater
Nepal extended from the
Teesta River in the east, to Kangra, Himachal
Pradesh , across the
Sutlej in the west as well as further south into
Terai plains and north of the
Himalayas than at present. A dispute
Tibet over the control of mountain passes and inner Tingri
Tibet forced the Qing Emperor of
China to start the
Sino-Nepali War compelling the Nepali to retreat and pay heavy
reparations to Peking.
Kingdom of Nepal and the East
India Company over the
annexation of minor states bordering
Nepal eventually led to the
Anglo-Nepali War (1815–16). At first the British underestimated the
Nepali and were soundly defeated until committing more military
resources than they had anticipated needing. They were greatly
impressed by the valour and competence of their adversaries. Thus
began the reputation of
Gurkhas as fierce and ruthless soldiers. The
war ended in the
Sugauli Treaty , under which
Nepal ceded recently
captured portions of
Sikkim and lands in
Terai as well as the right to
recruit soldiers. Madhesis , having supported the East
during the war, had their lands gifted to Nepali.
Factionalism inside the royal family led to a period of instability.
In 1846 a plot was discovered revealing that the reigning queen had
planned to overthrow Jung Bahadur Kunwar, a fast-rising military
leader. This led to the
Kot massacre ; armed clashes between military
personnel and administrators loyal to the queen led to the execution
of several hundred princes and chieftains around the country. Jung
Bahadur Kunwar emerged victorious and founded the
Rana dynasty , later
Jung Bahadur Rana . The king was made a titular figure, and
the post of Prime Minister was made powerful and hereditary. The Ranas
were staunchly pro-British and assisted them during the Indian
Rebellion of 1857 (and later in both World Wars). Some parts of the
Terai region populated with non-Nepali peoples were gifted to
the British as a friendly gesture because of her military help to
sustain British control in
India during the rebellion. In 1923, the
United Kingdom and
Nepal formally signed an agreement of friendship
that superseded the
Sugauli Treaty of 1816.
Slavery was abolished in
Nepal in 1924. Nevertheless, debt bondage
even involving debtors' children has been a persistent social problem
Terai . Rana rule was marked by tyranny, debauchery, economic
exploitation and religious persecution.
In the late 1940s, newly emerging pro-democracy movements and
political parties in
Nepal were critical of the Rana autocracy.
Meanwhile, with the invasion of
China in the 1950s, India
sought to counterbalance the perceived military threat from its
northern neighbour by taking pre-emptive steps to assert more
influence in Nepal.
India sponsored both
King Tribhuvan (ruled
1911–55) as Nepal's new ruler in 1951 and a new government, mostly
Nepali Congress , thus terminating Rana hegemony in the
After years of power wrangling between the king and the government,
King Mahendra (ruled 1955–72) scrapped the democratic experiment in
1959, and a "partyless" Panchayat system was made to govern Nepal
until 1989, when the "Jan Andolan" (People\'s Movement) forced King
Birendra (ruled 1972–2001) to accept constitutional reforms and to
establish a multiparty parliament that took seat in May 1991. In
Bhutan expelled roughly 100,000 Bhutanese citizens of
Nepali descent, most of whom have been living in seven refugee camps
Nepal ever since.
In 1996, the Communist Party of
Nepal started a violent bid to
replace the royal parliamentary system with a people's republic. This
led to the long
Nepali Civil War and more than 12,000 deaths.
On 1 June 2001, there was a massacre in the royal palace . King
Birendra , Queen Aishwarya and seven other members of the royal family
were killed. The alleged perpetrator was Crown Prince Dipendra , who
allegedly committed suicide (he died three days later) shortly
thereafter. This outburst was alleged to have been Dipendra's response
to his parents' refusal to accept his choice of wife. Nevertheless,
there is speculation and doubts among Nepali citizens about who was
Following the carnage, King Birendra's brother
the throne. On 1 February 2005, King
Gyanendra dismissed the entire
government and assumed full executive powers to quash the violent
Maoist movement, but this initiative was unsuccessful because a
stalemate had developed in which the Maoists were firmly entrenched in
large expanses of countryside but could not yet dislodge the military
from numerous towns and the largest cities. In September 2005, the
Maoists declared a three-month unilateral ceasefire to negotiate.
In response to the 2006 democracy movement , King
Gyanendra agreed to
relinquish sovereign power to the people. On 24 April 2006 the
dissolved House of Representatives was reinstated. Using its newly
acquired sovereign authority, on 18 May 2006 the House of
Representatives unanimously voted to curtail the power of the king and
Nepal a secular state , ending its time-honoured official
status as a
Hindu Kingdom. On 28 December 2007, a bill was passed in
parliament to amend Article 159 of the constitution – replacing
"Provisions regarding the King" by "Provisions of the Head of the
State" – declaring
Nepal a federal republic , and thereby abolishing
the monarchy. The bill came into force on 28 May 2008.
Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) won the largest number
of seats in the Constituent Assembly election held on 10 April 2008,
and formed a coalition government which included most of the parties
in the CA. Although acts of violence occurred during the pre-electoral
period, election observers noted that the elections themselves were
markedly peaceful and "well-carried out". Dr. Ram Baran
President of Nepal
The newly elected Assembly met in
Kathmandu on 28 May 2008, and,
after a polling of 564 constituent Assembly members, 560 voted to form
a new government, with the monarchist
Rastriya Prajatantra Party ,
which had four members in the assembly, registering a dissenting note.
At that point, it was declared that
Nepal had become a secular and
inclusive democratic republic, with the government announcing a
three-day public holiday from 28–30 May. The king was thereafter
given 15 days to vacate
Narayanhity Palace so it could reopen as a
Nonetheless, political tensions and consequent power-sharing battles
have continued in Nepal. In May 2009, the Maoist-led government was
toppled and another coalition government with all major political
parties barring the Maoists was formed.
Madhav Kumar Nepal of the
Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist–Leninist) was made the
Prime Minister of the coalition government. In February 2011 the
Madhav Kumar Nepal Government was toppled and
Jhala Nath Khanal of the
Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist–Leninist) was made the
Prime Minister. In August 2011 the
Jhala Nath Khanal Government was
Baburam Bhattarai of the Communist Party of
was made the Prime Minister.
The political parties were unable to draft a constitution in the
stipulated time. This led to dissolution of the Constituent Assembly
to pave way for new elections to strive for a new political mandate.
In opposition to the theory of separation of powers , then Chief
Justice Khil Raj Regmi was made the chairman of the caretaker
government . Under Regmi, the nation saw peaceful elections for the
constituent assembly . The major forces in the earlier constituent
assembly (namely CPN Maoists and Madhesi parties) dropped to distant
3rd and even below.
In February 2014, after consensus was reached between the two major
parties in the constituent assembly, Sushil Koirala was sworn in as
the new prime minister of Nepal.
In 20 September 2015, a new constitution, the "Constitution of Nepal
2015" (Nepali : नेपालको संविधान
२०७२) was announced by President Ram Baran
Yadav in the
constituent assembly. The constituent assembly was transformed into a
legislative parliament by the then-chairman of that assembly. The new
Nepal has changed
Nepal practically into a federal
democratic republic by making 7 unnamed states.
On 25 April 2015, a magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck Nepal. Two weeks
later, on 12 May, another earthquake with a magnitude of 7.3 hit
Nepal, which left more than 8,500 people dead and about 21,000,
In October 2015,
Bidhya Devi Bhandari was nominated as the first
Geography of Nepal A map of Nepal. A
topographic map of Nepal.
Nepal map of Köppen climate
Nepal is of roughly trapezoidal shape, 800 kilometres (497 mi) long
and 200 kilometres (124 mi) wide, with an area of 147,181 km2 (56,827
sq mi). See List of territories by size for the comparative size of
Nepal. It lies between latitudes 26° and 31°N , and longitudes 80°
and 89°E .
Nepal is commonly divided into three physiographic areas: Himal,
Terai . These ecological belts run east–west and are
vertically intersected by Nepal's major, north to south flowing river
The southern lowland plains or
India are part of the
northern rim of the
Indo-Gangetic Plain .
Terai is a lowland region
containing some hill ranges. They were formed and are fed by three
major Himalayan rivers: the Kosi , the Narayani , and the Karnali as
well as smaller rivers rising below the permanent snowline. This
region has a subtropical to tropical climate. The outermost range of
Sivalik Hills or Churia Range cresting at 700 to
1,000 metres (2,297 to 3,281 ft) marks the limit of the Gangetic
Plain, however broad, low valleys called Inner Tarai Valleys (Bhitri
Tarai Uptyaka) lie north of these foothills in several places.
Pahad is a mountain region which does not generally contain snow. The
mountains vary from 800 to 4,000 metres (2,625 to 13,123 ft) in
altitude with progression from subtropical climates below 1,200 metres
(3,937 ft) to alpine climates above 3,600 metres (11,811 ft). The
Lower Himalayan Range reaching 1,500 to 3,000 metres (4,921 to 9,843
ft) is the southern limit of this region, with subtropical river
valleys and "hills" alternating to the north of this range. Population
density is high in valleys but notably less above 2,000 metres (6,562
ft) and very low above 2,500 metres (8,202 ft) where snow occasionally
falls in winter.
Himal is the mountain region containing snow and situated in the
Great Himalayan Range, makes up the northern part of Nepal. It
contains the highest elevations in the world including 8,848 metres
(29,029 ft) height
Mount Everest (Sagarmāthā in Nepali) on the
border with China. Seven other of the world's "eight-thousanders " are
Nepal or on its border with China:
Cho Oyu ,
Nepal has five climatic zones, broadly corresponding to the
altitudes. The tropical and subtropical zones lie below 1,200 metres
(3,937 ft), the temperate zone 1,200 to 2,400 metres (3,937 to 7,874
ft), the cold zone 2,400 to 3,600 metres (7,874 to 11,811 ft), the
subarctic zone 3,600 to 4,400 metres (11,811 to 14,436 ft), and the
Arctic zone above 4,400 metres (14,436 ft).
Nepal experiences five seasons: summer, monsoon , autumn, winter and
Himalaya blocks cold winds from Central
Asia in the winter
and forms the northern limit of the monsoon wind patterns. In a land
once thickly forested, deforestation is a major problem in all
regions, with resulting erosion and degradation of ecosystems.
Nepal is popular for mountaineering, having some of the highest and
most challenging mountains in the world, including
Mount Everest .
Technically, the southeast ridge on the Nepali side of the mountain is
easier to climb, so most climbers prefer to trek to Everest through
The highest mountains in
Nepal are given here:
Mount Everest (Highest)
Solukhumbu District ,
Sagarmatha Zone (
Kangchenjunga (3rd highest)
Lelep VDC /
Taplejung District ,
Mechi Zone ( Nepal
Lhotse (4th highest)
Solukhumbu District ,
Sagarmatha Zone (
Makalu (5th highest)
Sankhuwasabha District ,
Kosi Zone (
Cho Oyu (6th highest)
Solukhumbu District ,
Sagarmatha Zone (
Dhaulagiri (7th highest)
Mudi VDC /
Myagdi District ,
Manaslu (8th highest)
Gorkha District / Dharapani VDC,
Manang District ,
Annapurna (10th highest)
Kaski District ,
Gandaki Zone /
Myagdi District ,
Geology of Nepal
Edmund Hillary and Tenzing
Norgay Sherpa from
New Zealand and
Nepal respectively became the first
people to summit
Mt Everest ; 'Top of the World' in
Nepal in 1953
The collision between the
Indian subcontinent and
Eurasia , which
Paleogene time and continues today, produced the Himalaya
Tibetan Plateau .
Nepal lies completely within this collision
zone, occupying the central sector of the Himalayan arc, nearly one
third of the 2,400 km (1,500 mi)-long Himalayas.
The Indian plate continues to move north relative to
Asia at the rate
of approximately 50 mm (2.0 in) per year. This is approximately twice
the speed at which human fingernails grow, which is very fast given
the size of the blocks of Earth's crust involved. As the strong Indian
continental crust subducts beneath the relatively weak Tibetan crust,
it pushes up the Himalayan Mountains. This collision zone has
accommodated huge amounts of crustal shortening as the rock sequences
slide one over another.
Based on a study published in 2014, of the Main Frontal Thrust, on
average a great earthquake occurs every 750 ± 140 and
870 ± 350 years in the east
Nepal region. A study from 2015
found a 700-year delay between earthquakes in the region. The study
also suggests, that because of tectonic stress transfer, the
earthquake from 1934 in
Nepal and the 2015 earthquake are connected
– following a historic earthquake pattern.
Erosion of the
Himalayas is a very important source of sediment,
which flows via several great rivers: the Indus ,
Ganges , and
Brahmaputra River systems to the Indian Ocean.
The dramatic differences in elevation found in
Nepal result in a
variety of biomes , from tropical savannas along the Indian border, to
subtropical broadleaf and coniferous forests in the Hill Region, to
temperate broadleaf and coniferous forests on the slopes of the
Himalaya, to montane grasslands and shrublands and rock and ice at the
At the lowest elevations is the Terai-Duar savanna and grasslands
ecoregion. These form a mosaic with the Himalayan subtropical
broadleaf forests , which occur from 500 to 1,000 metres (1,600 to
3,300 ft) and include the Inner
Terai Valleys. Himalayan subtropical
pine forests occur between 1,000 and 2,000 metres (3,300 and 6,600
Above these elevations, the biogeography of
Nepal is generally
divided from east to west by the Gandaki River. Ecoregions to the east
tend to receive more precipitation and to be more species-rich. Those
to the west are drier with fewer species.
From 1,500 to 3,000 metres (4,900 to 9,800 ft), are temperate
broadleaf forests: the eastern and western Himalayan broadleaf forests
. From 3,000 to 4,000 metres (9,800 to 13,100 ft) are the eastern and
western Himalayan subalpine conifer forests . To 5,500 metres (18,000
ft) are the eastern and western Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows .
* Landscapes and Climates of Nepal
NASA Landsat-7 Image of Nepal.
Nepal shares its boundaries with India
Mount Everest , the highest peak on earth, lies on the Nepal-China
Barun Valley , one of many valleys in the
Himalaya created by glacier
Khartuwa village from
Thakuri village of Sitalpati,
Shankhuwasabha, eastern Nepal.
Annapurna range of the Himalayas.
Kali Gandaki Gorge is one of the deepest gorges on earth.
Wind erosion in Kalopani
A field in
Hills view of Ghorahi, Dang
View of mountains
Politics of Nepal
Bidhya Devi Bhandari
President since 2015
Sher Bahadur Deuba
Prime Minister since June 7, 2017
Nepal has seen rapid political changes during the last two decades.
Up until 1990,
Nepal was a monarchy under executive control of the
King. Faced with a communist movement against absolute monarchy, King
Birendra , in 1990, agreed to a large-scale political reform by
creating a parliamentary monarchy with the king as the head of state
and a prime minister as the head of the government.
Nepal's legislature was bicameral , consisting of a House of
Representatives called the Pratinidhi Sabha and a National Council
called the Rastriya Sabha. The House of Representatives consisted of
205 members directly elected by the people. The National Council had
60 members: ten nominated by the king, 35 elected by the House of
Representatives, and the remaining 15 elected by an electoral college
made up of chairs of villages and towns. The legislature had a
five-year term but was dissolvable by the king before its term could
end. All Nepali citizens 18 years and older became eligible to vote.
The executive comprised the King and the Council of Ministers (the
cabinet). The leader of the coalition or party securing the maximum
seats in an election was appointed as the Prime Minister. The Cabinet
was appointed by the king on the recommendation of the Prime Minister.
Nepal tended to be highly unstable, falling either
through internal collapse or parliamentary dissolution by the monarch,
on the recommendation of the prime minister, according to the
constitution; no government has survived for more than two years since
The movement in April 2006 brought about a change in the nation's
governance: an interim constitution was promulgated, with the King
giving up power, and an interim House of Representatives was formed
with Maoist members after the new government held peace talks with the
Maoist rebels. The number of parliamentary seats was also increased to
330. In April 2007, the Communist Party of
Nepal (Maoist) joined the
interim government of Nepal.
In December 2007, the interim parliament passed a bill making
federal republic, with a president as head of state. Elections for the
constitutional assembly were held on 10 April 2008; the Maoist party
led the results but did not achieve a simple majority of seats. The
new parliament adopted the 2007 bill at its first meeting by an
overwhelming majority, and King
Gyanendra was given 15 days to leave
the Royal Palace in central Kathmandu. He left on 11 June.
On 26 June 2008, the prime minister
Girija Prasad Koirala
Girija Prasad Koirala , who had
served as Acting Head of State since January 2007, announced that he
would resign on the election of the country's first president by the
Constituent Assembly. The first round of voting, on 19 July 2008, saw
Parmanand Jha win election as Nepali vice-president, but neither of
the contenders for president received the required 298 votes and a
second round was held two days later. Ram Baran
Yadav of the Nepali
Congress party defeated Maoist-backed
Ram Raja Prasad Singh with 308
of the 590 votes cast. Koirala submitted his resignation to the new
president after Yadav's swearing-in ceremony on 23 July 2008.
Prachanda speaking at a rally in Pokhara.
On 15 August 2008, Maoist leader
Pushpa Kamal Dahal ) was
elected Prime Minister of Nepal, the first since the country's
transition from a monarchy to a republic. On 4 May 2009, Dahal
resigned over on-going conflicts with regard to the sacking of the
Army chief. Since Dahal's resignation, the country has been in a
serious political deadlock with one of the big issues being the
proposed integration of the former Maoist combatants, also known as
the People's Liberation Army, into the national security forces.
Jhala Nath Khanal of CPN (UML) was elected the Prime
Minister. Khanal was forced to step down as he could not succeed in
carrying forward the Peace Process and the constitution writing. On
August 2011, Maoist Babu Ram Bhattarai became third Prime Minister
after the election of constituent assembly. On 24 May 2012, Nepals's
Deputy PM Krishna Sitaula resigned. On 27 May 2012, the country's
Constituent Assembly failed to meet the deadline for writing a new
constitution for the country. Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai
announced that new elections will be held on 22 November 2012. "We
have no other option but to go back to the people and elect a new
assembly to write the constitution," he said in a nationally televised
speech. One of the main obstacles has been disagreement over whether
the states which will be created will be based on ethnicity.
Nepal is one of the few countries in
Asia to abolish the death
Nepal is the only Asian country where the possibility of
same-sex marriage has been proposed in the high court and in the
legislature although same-sex marriage currently does not exist in
Nepal (see also
LGBT rights in Nepal and
Same-sex marriage in
The decision was based on a seven-person government committee study,
and enacted through Supreme Court 's ruling November 2008. The ruling
granted full rights for
LGBT individuals, including the right to marry
and now can get citizenship as a third gender rather than male or
female as authorised by Nepal's Supreme Court in 2007.
Nepal is governed according to the
Constitution of Nepal , which came
into effect on 20 September 2015, replacing the Interim Constitution
of 2007. The Constitution was drafted by the Second Constituent
Assembly following the failure of the First Constituent Assembly to
produce a constitution in its mandated period. The constitution is the
fundamental law of Nepal. It defines
Nepal as having multi-ethnic,
multi-lingual, multi-religious, multi-cultural characteristics with
common aspirations of people living in diverse geographical regions,
and being committed to and united by a bond of allegiance to national
independence, territorial integrity, national interest and prosperity
of Nepal. All the
Nepali people collectively constitute the nation.
Singha Durbar , the seat of the Nepali government in
Constitution of Nepal has defined three organs of the government.
The form of governance of
Nepal shall be a multi-party, competitive,
federal democratic republican parliamentary system based on plurality.
The executive power of
Nepal shall rest with the Council of Ministers
in accordance with the Constitution and law. The President shall
appoint the parliamentary party leader of the political party with the
majority in the House of Representatives as a Prime Minister, and a
Council of Ministers shall be formed in his/her chairmanship
The executive power of the State shall, pursuant to the Constitution
and laws, be vested in the Council of Ministers of the State. Provided
that the executive power of the State shall be exercised by the State
Head in case of absence of the State Executive in a State of Emergency
or enforcement of Federal rule. Every state shall have a State Head as
the representative of the Federal government. The President shall
appoint a State Head for every state. The State Head shall exercise
the rights and duties as specified in the constitution or laws. The
State Head shall appoint the leader of the parliamentary party with
majority in the State Assembly as the Chief Minister and the State
Council of Ministers shall be formed under the chairpersonship of the
There shall be a Legislature, called Federal Parliament, consisting
of two Houses, namely the House of Representatives and the National
House Of Representatives
Except when dissolved earlier, the term of House of Representatives
shall be five years. The House of Representatives shall consist of 275
members as follows:
* 165 members elected through the first-past-the-post electoral
system consisting of one member from each of the one hundred and sixty
five electoral constituencies formed by dividing
Nepal into 165
constituencies based on geography, and population.
* 110 elected from proportional representation electoral system
where voters vote for parties, while treating the whole country as a
single electoral constituency.
The National Assembly shall be a permanent house. The tenure of
members of National Assembly shall be six years. The National Assembly
shall consist of two 59 members as follows:
* 56 members elected from an Electoral College comprising members of
State Assembly and chairpersons and vice-chairpersons of Village
councils and Mayors and Deputy Mayors of Municipal councils, with
different weights of votes for each, with eight members from each
state, including at least three women, one Dalit, one person with
disability or minority;
* 3 members, including at least one woman, to be nominated by the
President on the recommendation of Government of Nepal.
There shall be a unicameral legislature in a state which shall be
called the State Assembly. Every State Assembly shall consist of the
following number of members:
* Members equal to double the number of members to be elected
through the first-past-the-post (FPTP) election system to the House of
Representatives from the concerned state,
* The number of members to be elected through the Proportional
Representation (PR) election system equal to the number equivalent to
the remaining forty per cent when the number of members from FPTP is
regarded as sixty per cent.
Powers relating to justice in
Nepal shall be exercised by courts and
other judicial institutions in accordance with the provisions of this
Constitution, other laws and recognised principles of justice. There
shall be the following courts in Nepal:
* Supreme Court
* High Courts
* District Courts
Foreign relations of Nepal Embassy of
Nepal has close ties with both of its neighbors,
India and China. In
accordance with a long-standing treaty, Indian and Nepali citizens may
travel to each other's countries without a passport or visa. Nepali
citizens may work in
India without legal restriction. The Indian Army
Gorkha regiments consisting of
Gorkha troops recruited
mostly from Nepal.
However, in the years since the
Government of Nepal has been
communised and dominated by socialists, and India\'s government has
been controlled by more right-wing parties,
India has been
remilitarising the "porous" Indo-Nepali border to stifle the flow of
Nepal established relations with the People's
China on 1
August 1955, and relations since have been based on the Five
Principles of Peaceful Coexistence .
Nepal has aided
China in the
aftermath of the
2008 Sichuan earthquake , and
China has provided
economic assistance for Nepali infrastructure. Both countries have
cooperated to host the
2008 Summer Olympics summit of Mt. Everest .
Nepal has assisted in curbing anti-
China protests from the Tibetan
Nepalese Armed Forces
Gurkha Memorial, London
Nepal's military consists of the Nepali Army , which includes the
Nepali Army Air Service . The Nepali Police Force is the civilian
police and the
Armed Police Force Nepal is the paramilitary force.
Service is voluntary and the minimum age for enlistment is 18 years.
Nepal spends $99.2 million (2004) on its military—1.5% of its GDP.
Much of the equipment and arms are imported from India. Consequently,
the US provided M16s, M4s and other Colt weapons to combat communist
(Maoist) insurgents. The standard-issue battle rifle of the Nepali
army is the Colt M16.
In the new regulations by Nepali Army , female soldiers have been
barred from participating in combat situations and fighting in the
frontlines of war. However, they are allowed to be a part of the army
in sections like intelligence , headquarters, signals and operations .
Nepalese Federal States The administrative
Nepal (states and districts).
As of 20 September 2015,
Nepal is divided into 7 states and 75
districts . It has 744 local units. There are 4 metropolises, 13
sub-metropolises, 246 municipal councils and 481 village councils for
official works. The constitution grants 22 absolute powers to the
local units while they share 15 more powers with the central and state
STATE NO. 1
1 – Bhojpur District 2 –
Dhankuta District 3 – Ilam
District 4 –
Jhapa District 5 –
Khotang District 6 – Morang
District 7 –
Panchthar District 9 –
Sankhuwasabha District 10 –
Solukhumbu District 11 –
Sunsari District 12 – Taplejung
District 13 –
Terhathum District 14 –
STATE NO. 2
Bara District 2 –
Dhanusha District 3 – Mahottari
District 4 –
Rautahat District 6 –
Saptari District 7 – Sarlahi
District 8 –
STATE NO. 3
Bhaktapur District 2 –
Chitwan District 3 – Dhading
District 4 –
Dolakha District 5 –
Kathmandu District 6 –
Kavrepalanchok District 7 – Lalitpur District
Makwanpur District 9 –
Nuwakot District 10 –
Ramechhap District 11 –
Rasuwa District 12 –
STATE NO. 4
Baglung District (eastern part) 2 –
Gorkha District 3
Kaski District 4 –
Lamjung District 5 –
Manang District 6
Myagdi District 8 –
Nawalparasi District (east of
Bardaghat Susta) 9 –
Parbat District 10 –
Syangja District 11
STATE NO. 5
Arghakhanchi District * 2 –
Baglung District (western
part) 3 –
Banke District 4 –
Bardiya District 5 – Dang
Deukhuri District 6 –
Gulmi District * 7 –
Nawalparasi District (west of Bardaghat Susta) 9 – Palpa
District * 10 –
Pyuthan District * 11 –
Rolpa District * 12 –
Rukum District (eastern part)* 13 –
STATE NO. 6
Dailekh District 2 –
Dolpa District 3 – Humla
District 4 –
Jajarkot District 5 –
Kalikot District 7 –
Mugu District 8 – Rukum District
(western part) 9 – Salyan District 10 –
STATE NO. 7
Achham District 2 –
Baitadi District 3 – Bajhang
District 4 –
Bajura District 5 –
Darchula District 7 –
Doti District 8 – Kailali
District 9 –
* – denotes the districts that are proposed to be re-allocated to
State No. 4 and State No. 6
Largest cities or towns in Nepal
Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development
Pokhara Lekhnath 1
Economy of Nepal A proportional representation of
Nepal's exports. The Mountain Museum in
Pokhara , the country's
second largest city and a hub of tourism in
rice farming in
Nepal Nepalese silver currency, 1695
Nepalese Chamber of Commerce, Lhasa , 1955
Nepal's gross domestic product (GDP) for 2012 was estimated at over
$17.921 billion (adjusted to nominal GDP ). In 2010, agriculture
accounted for 36.1%, services comprised 48.5%, and industry 15.4% of
Nepal's GDP. While agriculture and industry are contracting, the
contribution by the service sector is increasing.
Agriculture employs 76% of the workforce, services 18% and
manufacturing and craft-based industry 6%. Agricultural produce –
mostly grown in the
Terai region bordering
India – includes tea,
rice, corn, wheat, sugarcane, root crops , milk, and water buffalo
meat. Industry mainly involves the processing of agricultural produce,
including jute , sugarcane, tobacco, and grain. Its workforce of about
10 million suffers from a severe shortage of skilled labour.
Nepal's economic growth continues to be adversely affected by the
political uncertainty. Nevertheless, real GDP growth was estimated to
increase to almost 5 percent for 2011–2012. This is an improvement
from the 3.5 percent GDP growth in 2010–2011 and would be the
second-highest growth rate in the post-conflict era. Sources of
growth include agriculture, construction, financial and other
services. The contribution of growth by consumption fuelled by
remittances has declined since 2010/2011. While remittance growth
slowed to 11 percent (in Nepali Rupee terms) in 2010/2011, it has
since increased to 37 percent. Remittances are estimated to be
equivalent to 25–30 percent of GDP. Inflation has been reduced to a
three-year low of 7 percent.
The proportion of poor people has declined substantially since 2003.
The percentage of people living below the international poverty line
(people earning less than US$1.25 per day) has halved in seven years.
At this measure of poverty the percentage of poor people declined from
53.1% in 2003/2004 to 24.8% in 2010/2011. With a higher poverty line
of US$2 per-capita per day, poverty declined by one-quarter to 57.3%.
However, the income distribution remains grossly uneven.
Kathmandu street vendors
In a recent survey,
Nepal has performed extremely well in reducing
poverty along with Rwanda and
Bangladesh as the percentage of poor
dropped to 44.2 percent of the population in 2011 from 64.7 percent in
2006—4.1 percentage points per year, which means that
Nepal has made
improvement in sectors like nutrition, child mortality, electricity,
improved flooring and assets. If the progress of reducing poverty
continues at this rate, then it is predicted that
Nepal will halve the
current poverty rate and eradicate it within the next 20 years.
The spectacular landscape and diverse, exotic cultures of Nepal
represent considerable potential for tourism , but growth in the
industry has been stifled by political instability and poor
infrastructure. Despite these problems, in 2012 the number of
international tourists visiting
Nepal was 598,204, a 10% increase on
the previous year. The tourism sector contributed nearly 3% of
national GDP in 2012 and is the second-biggest foreign income earner
The rate of unemployment and underemployment approaches half of the
working-age population. Thus many Nepali citizens move to other
countries in search of work. Destinations include India, Qatar, the
United States, Thailand, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Japan,
Brunei Darussalam, Australia, and Canada.
Nepal receives $50 million
a year through the
Gurkha soldiers who serve in the Indian and British
armies and are highly esteemed for their skill and bravery. As of 2010
, the total remittance value is around $3.5 billion. In 2009 alone,
the remittance contributed to 22.9% of the nation's GDP.
A long-standing economic agreement underpins a close relationship
with India. The country receives foreign aid from the UK, India,
Japan, the US, the EU, China, Switzerland, and Scandinavian countries.
Poverty is acute; per-capita income is around $1,000. The
distribution of wealth among the Nepali is consistent with that in
many developed and developing countries: the highest 10% of households
control 39.1% of the national wealth and the lowest 10% control only
The government's budget is about $1.153 billion, with an expenditure
of $1.789 billion (FY 20005/06). The Nepali rupee has been tied to the
Indian rupee at an exchange rate of 1.6 for many years. Since the
loosening of exchange rate controls in the early 1990s, the black
market for foreign exchange has all but disappeared. The inflation
rate has dropped to 2.9% after a period of higher inflation during the
Nepal's exports of mainly carpets, clothing, hemp , leather goods,
jute goods and grain total $822 million. Import commodities of mainly
gold, machinery and equipment, petroleum products and fertiliser total
European Union (EU) (46.13%), the US (17.4%), and
Germany (7.1%) are its main export partners. The
European Union has
emerged the largest buyer of Nepali ready-made garments (RMG). Exports
to the EU accounted for "46.13 percent of the country's total garment
exports". Nepal's import partners include
India (47.5%), the United
Arab Emirates (11.2%),
Saudi Arabia (4.9%), and
Besides having landlocked, rugged geography, few tangible natural
resources and poor infrastructure, the ineffective post-1950
government and the long-running civil war are also factors in stunting
the nation's economic growth and development.
Energy in Nepal Middle Marshyandi
Nepal has significant potential to generate
hydropower , which it plans to export across
The bulk of the energy in
Nepal comes from fuel wood (68%),
agricultural waste (15%), animal dung (8%), and imported fossil fuels
(8%). Except for some lignite deposits,
Nepal has no known oil, gas
or coal deposits. All commercial fossil fuels (mainly oil and coal)
are either imported from
India or from international markets routed
India and China. Fuel imports absorb over one-fourth of
Nepal's foreign exchange earnings.
Only about 1% energy need is fulfilled by electricity. The perennial
nature of Nepali rivers and the steep gradient of the country's
topography provide ideal conditions for the development of some of the
world's largest hydroelectric projects. Current estimates put Nepal's
economically feasible hydropower potential to be approximately 83,000
MW from 66 hydropower project sites. However, currently
been able to exploit only about 600 MW from 20 medium to large
hydropower plants and a number of small and micro hydropower plants.
There are 9 major hydropower plants under construction, and additional
27 sites considered for potential development. Only about 40% of
Nepal's population has access to electricity. There is a great
disparity between urban and rural areas. The electrification rate in
urban areas is 90%, whereas the rate for rural areas is only 5%.
Power cuts of up to 22 hours a day take place in peak demand periods
of winter and the peak electricity demand is almost the double the
capability or dependable capacity. The position of the power sector
remains unsatisfactory because of high tariffs, high system losses,
high generation costs, high overheads, over staffing, and lower
Transport in Nepal Means of transport in mountain
Nepal remains isolated from the world's major land, air and sea
transport routes although, within the country, aviation is in a better
state, with 47 airports, 11 of them with paved runways; flights are
frequent and support a sizable traffic. The hilly and mountainous
terrain in the northern two-thirds of the country has made the
building of roads and other infrastructure difficult and expensive. In
2007 there were just over 10,142 km (6,302 mi) of paved roads, and
7,140 km (4,437 mi) of unpaved road, and one 59 km (37 mi) railway
line in the south.
More than one-third of its people live at least a two hours walk from
the nearest all-season road. Only recently all district headquarters
(except for Simikot and Dunai) became reachable by road from
Kathmandu. In addition, around 60% of the road network and most rural
roads are not operable during the rainy season. The only practical
seaport of entry for goods bound for
Kolkata in West
Bengal state of India. Internally, the poor state of development of
the road system makes access to markets, schools, and health clinics a
TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND MASS MEDIA
According to the
Nepal Telecommunication Authority MIS May 2012
report, there are seven operators and the total voice telephony
subscribers including fixed and mobile are 16,350,946 which gives a
penetration rate of 61.42%. The fixed telephone service account for
9.37%, mobile for 64.63%, and other services (LM, GMPCS) for 3.76% of
the total penetration rate. Similarly, the numbers of subscribers to
data/internet services are 4,667,536 which represents 17.53%
penetration rate. Most of the data service is accounted by GPRS users.
Twelve months earlier the data/internet penetration was 10.05%, thus
this represents a growth rate of 74.77%.
Not only has there been strong subscriber growth, especially in the
mobile sector, but there was evidence of a clear vision in the sector,
including putting a reform process in place and planning for the
building of necessary telecommunications infrastructure. Most
importantly, the Ministry of Information and Communications (MoIC) and
the telecom regulator, the National Telecommunications Authority
(NTA), have both been very active in the performance of their
Despite all the effort, there remained a significant disparity
between the high coverage levels in the cities and the coverage
available in the underdeveloped rural regions. Progress on providing
some minimum access had been good. Of a total of 3,914 village
development committees across the country, 306 were unserved by
December 2009. In order to meet future demand, it was estimated that
Nepal needed to invest around US$135 million annually in its telecom
sector. In 2009, the telecommunication sector alone contributed to 1%
of the nation's GDP. As of 30 September 2012,
Nepal has 1,828,700
As of 2007 , the state operates two television stations as well as
national and regional radio stations. There are roughly 30 independent
TV channels registered, with only about half in regular operation.
Nearly 400 FM radio stations are licensed with roughly 300
operational. According to the 2011 census, the percentage of
households possessing radio was 50.82%, television 36.45%, cable TV
19.33%, computer 7.23%. According to the Press Council Nepal, as of
2012 there are 2,038 registered newspapers in Nepal, among which 514
are in publication. In 2013,
Reporters Without Borders ranked Nepal
at 118th place in the world in terms of press freedom.
Education in Nepal
The overall literacy rate (for population age 5 years and above)
increased from 54.1% in 2001 to 65.9% in 2011. The male literacy rate
was 75.1% compared to the female literacy rate of 57.4%. The highest
literacy rate was reported in
Kathmandu district (86.3%) and lowest in
Rautahat (41.7%). While the net primary enrollment rate was 74% in
2005; in 2009, that enrollment rate was 90%.
However, increasing access to secondary education (grade 9–12)
remains a major challenge, as evidenced by the low net enrollment rate
of 24% at this level. More than half of primary students do not enter
secondary schools, and only one-half of them complete secondary
schooling. In addition, fewer girls than boys join secondary schools
and, among those who do, fewer complete the 10th grade.
Nepal has seven universities:
Tribhuvan University , Kathmandu
Pokhara University ,
Purbanchal University , Mahendra
Sanskrit University ,
Far-western University , and Agriculture and
Forestry University . Some newly proposed universities are Lumbini
Bouddha University, and Mid-Western University. Some fine scholarship
has emerged in the post-1990 era.
Health in Nepal Kunde Hospital in remote
Public health and health care services in
Nepal are provided by both
the public and private sectors and fare poorly by international
standards. According to 2011 census, more than one-third (38.17%) of
the total households do not have a toilet. Tap water is the main
source of drinking water for 47.78% of households, tube well/hand pump
is the main source of drinking water for about 35% of households,
while spout, uncovered well/kuwa, and covered well/kuwa are the main
source for 5.74%, 4.71%, and 2.45% respectively. Based on 2010 World
Health Organization (WHO) data,
Nepal ranked 139th in life expectancy
in 2010 with the average Nepali living to 65.8 years.
Diseases are more prevalent in
Nepal than in other South Asian
countries, especially in rural areas. Leading diseases and illnesses
include diarrhea , gastrointestinal disorders , goitres , intestinal
parasites , leprosy , visceral leishmaniasis and tuberculosis . About
4 out of 1,000 adults aged 15 to 49 had human immunodeficiency virus
(HIV), and the HIV prevalence rate was 0.5%.
remains very high: about 47% of children under five are stunted, 15
percent wasted, and 36 percent underweight, although there has been a
declining trend for these rates over the past five years, they remain
alarmingly high. In spite of these figures, improvements in health
care have been made, most notably in maternal-child health. In 2012,
the under-five infant mortality was estimated to be 41 out of every
1000 children. Overall Nepal's
Human Development Index
Human Development Index (HDI) for
health was 0.77 in 2011, ranking
Nepal 126 out of 194 countries, up
from 0.444 in 1980.
The Community Forestry Program in
Nepal is a participatory
environmental governance that encompasses well-defined policies,
institutions, and practices. The program addresses the twin goals of
forest conservation and poverty reduction. As more than 70 percent of
Nepal's population depends on agriculture for their livelihood,
community management of forests has been a critically important
intervention. Through legislative developments and operational
innovations over three decades, the program has evolved from a
protection-oriented, conservation-focused agenda to a much more
broad-based strategy for forest use, enterprise development, and
livelihood improvement. By April 2009, one-third of Nepal's population
was participating in the program, directly managing more than
one-fourth of Nepal's forest area.
The immediate livelihood benefits derived by rural households bolster
strong collective action wherein local communities actively and
sustainably manage forest resources. Community forests also became the
source of diversified investment capital and raw material for new
market-oriented livelihoods. Community forestry shows traits of
political, financial, and ecological sustainability, including an
emergence of a strong legal and regulatory framework, and robust civil
society institutions and networks. However, a continuing challenge is
to ensure equitable distribution of benefits to women and marginalised
groups. Lessons for replication emphasise experiential learning,
establishment of a strong civil society network, flexible regulation
to encourage diverse institutional modalities, and responsiveness of
government and policymakers to a multistakeholder collaborative
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Science and technology in Nepal Erected by King
Bhupatindra Malla in 1702,
Nyatapola is an important tourist
attraction in the historical city of
Historical kingdoms that existed in the
Kathmandu valley are found to
have made use of some clever technologies in numerous areas such as
architecture, agriculture, civil engineering, water management, etc.
The Gopals and Abhirs, who ruled the valley up until c. 1000 BC, used
temporary materials for construction such as bamboo, hay, timber, etc.
Kirat period (700 BC – 110 AD) employed the technology of brick
firing as well as produced quality woolen shawls. Similarly, stupas ,
idols, canals, self-recharging ponds, reservoirs, etc. constructed
during the Lichhavi era (110–879 AD) are intact to this day, which
manifests the ingenuity of traditional architecture. Moreover, the
Malla period (1200–1768 AD) saw an impressive growth in
architecture, on par with its advanced contemporaries. An archetypal
example of Malla architecture is
Nyatapola , a five-storied, 30-metre
tall temple in Bhaktapur, which has strangely survived at least four
major earthquakes, including the
April 2015 Nepal earthquake .
Nepal was a late entrant into the modern world of science and
technology. Nepal’s first institution of higher education,
Tri-Chandra College , was established by Chandra Shumsher in 1918. The
college introduced science at the Intermediate level a year later,
marking the genesis of formal science education in the country.
However, the college was not accessible to the general public, but
only to a handful of members of the Rana regime . Throughout the Rana
regime that lasted for well over a century,
Nepal was effectively
isolated from the rest of the world. Owing to this isolation, Nepal
was relatively untouched by and unfamiliar of social transformations
brought about by the British invasion in
India and the Industrial
Revolution in the West. However, after the advent of democracy and
abolition of Rana regime in 1951,
Nepal broke free from the shackles
of self-imposed isolation and opened up to the outside world. This
opening marked the initiation of S National Investigation Department
Nepal ; and
Human trafficking in Nepal
Law enforcement in Nepal is primarily the responsibility of the
Nepali Police Force which is the national police of Nepal. It is
independent of the Nepali Army . In the days of its establishment,
Nepal Police personnel were mainly drawn from the armed forces of the
Nepali Congress Party which fought against the feudal Rana autocracy
in Nepal. The
Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) and National
Investigation Department of
Nepal (NID) are the investigation agencies
of Nepal. They have offices in all 75 administrative districts
including regional offices in five regions and zonal offices in 14
zones. Numbers vary from three to five members at each district level
in rural districts, and numbers can be higher in urban districts. They
have both Domestic and International surveillance unit which mainly
deals with cross border terrorists, drug trafficking and money
A 2010 survey estimated about 46,000 hard drug users in the country,
with 70% of the users to be within the age group of 15 to 29. The
same survey also reported that 19% of the users had been introduced to
hard drugs when they were less than 15 years old; and 14.4% of drug
users were attending school or college. Only 12 of the 17
municipalities studied had any type of rehabilitation centre. There
has been a sharp increase in the seizure of drugs such as hashish,
heroin and opium in the past few years; and there are indications that
drug traffickers are trying to establish
Nepal as a transit point.
Human trafficking and child labour are major problems in Nepal.
Nepali victims are trafficked within Nepal, to India, the Middle East,
and other areas such as
Malaysia and forced to become prostitutes,
domestic servants, beggars, factory workers, mine workers, circus
performers, child soldiers, and others. Sex trafficking is
particularly rampant within
Nepal and to India, with as many as 5,000
to 10,000 women and girls trafficked to
India alone each year.
Capital punishment was abolished in
Nepal in 1997. In 2008, the
Nepali government abolished the
Haliya system of forced labour,
freeing about 20,000 people. However, the effectiveness of this has
been questioned by the Asian Legal Resource Centre.
Demographics of Nepal Nepalese gentlemen in 1940
Nepalese women dancing for
Teej Population density map
Nepal Comparison Of
According to the 2011 census, Nepal's population grew from 9 million
people in 1950 to 26.5 million. From 2001 to 2011, the average family
size declined from 5.44 to 4.9. The census also noted some 1.9 million
absentee people, over a million more than in 2001; most are male
labourers employed overseas, predominantly in
South Asia and the
Middle East. This correlated with the drop in sex ratio from 94.41 as
compared to 99.80 for 2001. The annual population growth rate is
The citizens of
Nepal are known as Nepali or Nepalese. The country is
home to people of many different national origins. As a result,
Nepalese do not equate their nationality with ethnicity , but with
citizenship and allegiance . Although citizens make up the majority of
Nepalese, non-citizen residents, dual citizens, and expatriates may
also claim a Nepalese identity.
Nepal is multicultural and multiethnic
country because it became a country by occupying several small
kingdoms such as Mustang ,
Videha (Mithila ),
Madhesh , and Limbuwan
in the 18th century. The oldest settlements in Mithila and Tharuhat
Maithil . Northern
Nepal is historically inhabited by Kirants
Mongoloid , Rai and
Limbu people. The mountainous region is sparsely
populated above 3,000 m (9,800 ft), but in central and western Nepal
ethnic Sherpa and Lamapeople inhabit even higher semi-arid valleys
north of the Himalaya. The Nepali speaking
Khas people mostly inhabit
central and southern regions.
Kathmandu Valley , in the middle hill
region, constitutes a small fraction of the nation's area but is the
most densely populated, with almost 5 percent of the nation's
population. The Nepali are descendants of three major migrations from
Tibet , and North Burma and the Chinese state of
Assam . Among the earliest inhabitants were the
Kirat of east
mid-region, Newars of the
Kathmandu Valley , aboriginal Tharus of
Despite the migration of a significant section of the population to
Madhesh (southern plains) in recent years, the majority of
Nepalese still live in the central highlands; the northern mountains
are sparsely populated. Kathmandu, with a population of over 2.6
million (metropolitan area: 5 million), is the largest city in the
country and the cultural and economic heart.
According to the World Refugee Survey 2008, published by the US
Refugees and Immigrants,
Nepal hosted a population of
refugees and asylum seekers in 2007 numbering approximately 130,000.
Of this population, approximately 109,200 persons were from
20,500 from People's
Republic of China. The government of Nepal
Bhutanese refugees to seven camps in the
Jhapa and Morang
districts, and refugees were not permitted to work in most
professions. At present, the
United States is working towards
resettling more than 60,000 of these refugees in the US.
POPULATION BELOW 14 YEARS OLD
POPULATION OF AGE 15 TO 59
POPULATION ABOVE 60
MEDIAN AGE (AVERAGE)
MEDIAN AGE (MALE)
MEDIAN AGE (FEMALES)
LIFE EXPECTANCY (AVERAGE) (REFERENCE: )
LIFE EXPECTANCY (MALE)
LIFE EXPECTANCY (FEMALE)
LITERACY RATE (AVERAGE)
LITERACY RATE (MALE)
LITERACY RATE (FEMALE)
A Nepalese Tibetan monk
Languages of Nepal
Nepal's diverse linguistic heritage stems from three major language
groups: Indo-Aryan ,
Tibeto-Burman , and various indigenous language
isolates. The major languages of
Nepal (percent spoken as native
language) according to the 2011 census are Nepali (44.6%), Maithili
Awadhi Language) (6.0%), Tharu (5.8%), Tamang
Nepal Bhasa (3.2%),
Bajjika (3%) and Magar (3.0%), Doteli
Urdu (2.6%) and
Nepal is home to at least four
indigenous sign languages .
Sanskrit , Nepali is written in
Nepali is the official language and serves as lingua franca among
Nepali of different ethnolinguistic groups. The regional languages
Bhojpuri and rarely
Nepali Muslims are
spoken in the southern
Madhesh region. Many Nepali in government and
business speak Maithili as the main language and Nepali as their de
facto lingua franca. Varieties of Tibetan are spoken in and north of
Himalaya where standard literary Tibetan is widely
understood by those with religious education. Local dialects in the
Terai and hills are mostly unwritten with efforts underway to develop
systems for writing many in
Devanagari or the Roman alphabet.
Religion in Nepal
RELIGION IN NEPAL (2011)
The significant majority of the Nepalese population follows Hinduism
Shiva is regarded as the guardian deity of the country.
home to the famous Lord
Shiva temple, the
Pashupatinath Temple , where
Hindus from all over the world come for pilgrimage. According to Hindu
mythology, the goddess
Sita of the epic
Ramayana , was born in the
Mithila Kingdom of King
Lumbini is a
Buddhist pilgrimage site and
UNESCO World Heritage Site
in the Kapilavastu district. Traditionally it is held to be the
birthplace in about 563 B.C. of
Siddhartha Gautama , a Kshatriya caste
prince of the Sakya clan, who as the Buddha Gautama , founded Buddhism
The holy site of
Lumbini is bordered by a large monastic zone, in
which only monasteries can be built. All three main branches of
Buddhism exist in
Nepal and the
Newa people have their own branch of
Buddhism is also the dominant religion of the thinly
populated northern areas, which are mostly inhabited by
Tibetan-related peoples, such as the Sherpa .
The Buddha, born as a
Hindu , is also said to be a descendant of
Vedic Sage Angirasa in many Buddhist texts. The Buddha's family
surname is associated with
Gautama Maharishi . Differences between
Hindus and Buddhists have been minimal in
Nepal due to the cultural
and historical intermingling of
Hindu and Buddhist beliefs. Moreover,
Hinduism were never two distinct religions
in the western sense of the word. In Nepal, the faiths share common
temples and worship common deities. Among other natives of Nepal,
those more influenced by
Hinduism were the Magar ,
Rai and the
Hindu influence is less prominent among the
Bhutia , and Thakali groups who employ Buddhist monks for
their religious ceremonies. Most of the festivals in
Nepal are Hindu.
The Machendrajatra festival, dedicated to
Siddha , is
celebrated by many Buddhists in
Nepal as a main festival. As it is
believed that Ne Muni established Nepal, some important priests in
Nepal are called "Tirthaguru Nemuni". Islam is a minority religion in
Nepal, with 4.2% of the population being Muslim according to a 2006
Nepali census. Mundhum , Christianity and
Jainism are other minority
Pokhara Lalitpur The 14 largest cities by population
as per the 2011 census Main article:
List of cities in Nepal
Kathmandu (Pop.: 975,453)
Pokhara (Pop.: 255,465)
* Lalitpur (Pop.: 220,802)
Biratnagar (Pop.: 201,125)
* Bharatpur (Pop.: 143,836)
* Birganj (Pop.: 135,904)
Butwal (Pop.: 118,462)
* Dharan (Pop.: 116,181)
* Bhim Datta (Pop.: 104,599)
Dhangadhi (Pop.: 101,970)
Janakpur (Pop.: 97,776)
Madhyapur Thimi (Pop.: 83,036)
Bhaktapur (Pop.: 81,748)
Culture of Nepal and
Music of Nepal The Nepalese
UN Goodwill Ambassador
Folklore is an integral part of Nepali society. Traditional stories
are rooted in the reality of day-to-day life, tales of love, affection
and battles as well as demons and ghosts and thus reflect local
lifestyles, culture, and beliefs. Many Nepali folktales are enacted
through the medium of dance and music.
Most houses in the rural lowlands of
Nepal are made up of a tight
bamboo framework and walls of a mud and cow-dung mix. These dwellings
remain cool in summer and retain warmth in winter. Houses in the hills
are usually made of unbaked bricks with thatch or tile roofing. At
high elevations construction changes to stone masonry and slate may be
used on roofs.
Nepal\'s flag is the only national flag in the world that is not
rectangular in shape. The constitution of
Nepal contains instructions
for a geometric construction of the flag. According to its official
description, the red in the flag stands for victory in war or courage,
and is also the colour of the rhododendron , the national flower of
Nepal. Red also stands for aggression. The flag's blue border
signifies peace. The curved moon on the flag is a symbol of the
peaceful and calm nature of Nepali, while the sun represents the
aggressiveness of Nepali warriors.
HOLIDAYS AND FESTIVALS
List of festivals in Nepal
With 36 days a year ,
Nepal is the country that enjoys the most
number of public holidays in the world. The Nepali year begins in 1st
Baisakh in official
Hindu Calendar of the country, the Bikram
Sambat , which falls in mid-April and is divided into 12 months.
Saturday is the official weekly holiday. Main annual holidays include
the Martyr's Day (18 February), and a mix of
Hindu and Buddhist
festivals such as
Dashain in autumn, Tihar in mid-autumn and
late autumn. During Swanti , the Newars perform the
Mha Puja ceremony
to celebrate New Year's Day of the lunar calendar
Nepal Sambat . Being
Nepal has holiday on main festivals of minority
religions in the nation too.
The national cuisine of
Gundruk .The staple
Nepali meal is dal bhat . Dal is a lentil soup, and is served over
bhat (boiled rice), with tarkari (curried vegetables) together with
achar (pickles) or chutni (spicy condiment made from fresh
ingredients). It consists of non-vegetarian as well as vegetarian
items. Mustard oil is a common cooking medium and a host of spices,
including cumin, coriander, black pepper, sesame seeds, turmeric,
garlic, ginger, methi (fenugreek), bay leaves, cloves, cinnamon,
chilies and mustard seeds are used in cooking. Momo is a type of
steamed dumpling with meat or vegetable fillings, and is a popular
fast food in many regions of Nepal.
Sports in Nepal
Association football is the most popular sport in
Nepal and was
first played during the
Rana dynasty in 1921. The one and only
international stadium in the country is the Dasarath Rangasala Stadium
where the national team plays its home matches.
Cricket has been gaining popularity since the last decade . Since the
establishment of the national team ,
Nepal has played its home matches
Tribhuvan University International
Cricket Ground . The
national team has since won the 2012 ICC World
Cricket League Division
Four and the 2013 ICC World
Cricket League Division Three
simultaneously, hence qualifying for 2014
Cricket World Cup Qualifier
. They also qualified for the
2014 ICC World Twenty20 in Bangladesh,
and this qualification has been the farthest the team have ever made
in an ICC event. On 28 June 2014, the ICC awarded T20I status to
Nepal, who took part and performed exceptionally well in the 2014 ICC
World Twenty20 .
Nepal had already played three T20I matches before
gaining the status, as ICC had earlier announced that all matches at
2014 ICC World Twenty20 would have T20I status.
Nepal won the
2014 ICC World
Cricket League Division Three held in
qualified for the 2015 ICC World
Cricket League Division Two .
Nepal finished fourth in the 2015 ICC World
Cricket League Division
Two in Namibia and qualified for the 2015–17 ICC World Cricket
League Championship . But
Nepal failed to secure promotion to
Division One and qualification to 2015–17 ICC Intercontinental Cup
after finishing third in the round-robin stage.
Basanta Regmi became
the first bowler to take 100 wickets in the World
Cricket League . He
achieved this feat after taking 2 wickets against Netherlands in the
UNITS OF MEASUREMENT
Nepalese customary units of measurement
Although the country has adopted the metric system as its official
standard since 1968, traditional units of measurement are still
commonplace. The customary units of area employed in the
– such as katha , bigha , etc. – sound similar to those used
South Asia . However, they vary markedly in size, as they
seem to have been standardised to different measures of area. For
instance, a katha in
Nepal is arbitrarily set at 338.63 m², while a
Bangladesh means about 67 m² of land area. In addition to
native ones, imperial units pertaining to length (specifically inch
and foot ) and metric units such as kilogram and litre are also fairly
common in everyday trade and commerce.
IN POPULAR MEDIA
Some notable books and films set against the backdrop of Nepal
* Suyin, Han (1958).
The Mountain Is Young .
* Matthiessen, Peter (1978).
The Snow Leopard .
* Thapa, Manjushree (2001). The Tutor of History.
* Wilson-Howarth, Jane (2007). A Glimpse of Eternal Snows.
List of foreign films shot in Nepal
The Golden Child (1986)
* Seven Years in
Little Buddha (1993)
* Everest (2015)
* Doctor Strange (2016)
Holi festival celebrations in
Traditional Pahadi folk dress
Nepal cricket team
Musicians playing devotional songs
One of the Rani palace of
Urban Newari cuisine
Outline of Nepal
Human rights in Nepal
Gender inequality in Nepal
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