Monday, March 31, 2008

Entertainment –> Television –> News –> Full Story Prashant makes waves on film making reality show

Gangtok (UNI): He shares his first name with the Indian Idol 3, but this Prashant is making waves on yet another reality show on the television. Prashant Rasaily, a budding director from Sikkim, has entered the top ten of the first Indian reality show based on film making Gateway presided over by Ashok Amritraj, the chairman and CEO of Hyde Park Entertainment.

Prashant became the third person from the Hills in recent times to have made it at the top of reality shows after Indian Idol Prashant Tamang and Chhote Ustaad aspirant Prakriti Giri. This achievement means that the talent pool from the Hills is making a presence yet again on the small screen.

The twelve week episode is being presided over by Amritraj and being shot at Subash Ghai's film school in Bombay Whistling Woods. The acting talent has been arranged by Anupam Kher's acting school, Talent Company.

At the end of the series, Amritraj will select a winner for the grand prize: an intern ship in Hollywood where the winner will have to spend six to eight weeks with the Hyde Park Entertainment in Los Angeles working on the development and pre-production of a Hollywood film. The winner will then get a chance to rise from obscurity to an international director to direct a Hollywood film produced and financed by Hyde Park Entertainment, and distributed around the world. Prashant, a multi-talented boy from Sikkim is a singer, musician, Disc jockey, photographer and a director.

He has directed Myth, a 24 minute short thriller, the first English movie from the state. The movie is based on Wildlife and the Environment. Prior to its screening, during its post-production phase in Calcutta, the movie had won praises from renowned names in the Indian film industry. He was also part of the documentary Mahakala Chaam shot at the Rumtek monastery.

Prashant has two more movies lined up, one in Sikkimese called Karma and a silent film Liaison. He also has a music album Awaaz to his credit. Recently he has written the script for Kagbeni, a Nepali thriller produced from Kathmandu which is to be released soon.

Prashant was unavailable for comments since he is busy with the episodes and has been barred from speaking to the press till the contest is over. He had sent a three and a half minute film called 'Mother' as an entry to the contest, which secured a berth for him in the final 18 hot contestant's seat.

Well known Bollywood directors like Subhash Ghai, Karan Johar, R Balakrishnan, Sanjay Gupta, Shriram Raghavan, Manish Acharya and many others are expected to appear as guests in the episodes. The show puts the contestants through a rigorous exercise of tasks to test their creativity and film making abilities. The jury members include film makers Rajat Kapoor and Anurag Basu. Prashant's bid for the top ten came in his favour with the short film prepared as a task for the contest Two Worlds.

Prakriti's aunty speaks at Chotte Ustaad

From: SVOIPrakriti

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Chisopani Club holds meeting to fight back Drugs

Singtam: United Alliance Club, a local club here at Chisopani organized a meet to fight for a major challenge in today's society in Drugs. The two month old club was started especially for the motive to help the youth indulged in drug addiction as well as educate the consequences of the Drugs. Talking on the occasion Dhiraj Pradhan, President of the club spoke of the ill effects of the intake of the drugs in today's society. He recalled for the need of such organization to help those people. Pradhan added those people should not be seen as the ills of the society but need to have a talk with them. Initially it won't be easy but with helping hand from every individual present on the meet, Pradhan was very optimistic about his approach with a success.
Different discussion was held to improve and appraise the club and be available to every needful individual. Suggestion on diverting the minds of those people to intellectual game like chess and others were are discussed. Arun Lama,Chief Guest applauded the initiative taken by the youths to help build the stronger and better society. He asked everyone to come forth and fight this evil and build better Sikkim for tomorrow. He assured every possible help from his side. Lama emphasized more and more people from rural areas and urban areas should be included in the club and there should be no age level for the people to be the member of the club was told.

Old picture of Singtam Teesta River

Old picture of Singtam Teesta River which is no more the same as then
Bridge over Teesta river near Singtam

International Flower Festival 2008, Sikkim (in pictures)

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Damdul’s crusade inspires wife

- Shillong Tibetan’s family ready to make ‘supreme sacrifice’ for freedom


Shillong, March 28: Tsering Dolma’s face shows no signs of pain. What shines bright in her eyes is the fierce determination of a woman who is ready to die for a cause for which her husband tried to give his life on Wednesday.

Tsering, wife of Shillong-based Tibetan Kalsang Damdul, who attempted self-immolation on Wednesday on the Sikkim-Bengal border, today said she and her two-year-old son were ready for the “supreme sacrifice” for Tibet and its people. Damdul had said his action was spurred by his “inner voice”.

Cradling her child at their Jhalupara residence in Shillong, Tsering said she was “brimming with courage and confidence” after the brave act by her husband. “For the sake of Tibet, we are ready to sacrifice our lives and even our child.”

There are nearly 700 Tibetans in various parts of Shillong. Most of them either run restaurants or sell fruits and clothing.

It was on March 16 that Damdul, a member of Tibetan Youth Congress along with 79 other Shillong Tibetan youths, went to the Sikkim border. Their plan was to cross Nathu-la and reach Tibet to give support to the anti-China campaign.

“I was supposed to go along with my husband to Sikkim, but my mother-in-law did not let me,” Tsering said.

She said Damdul called up from Sikkim after the headline-grabbing incident.

Born in Shillong, Tsering believes that one day her dream of a free land will be fulfilled. “We are in exile since 1959. There should be more pressure from India on China for a peaceful settlement.”

To get the support of the people of Meghalaya, Tsering took the initiative to start a signature campaign in Shillong.

Damdul’s younger brother Tenam is also a proud member of the team from Shillong.

Tashi Lhamo — who runs a restaurant at Barabazar in the Meghalaya capital — sent his 22-year-old son, Tenzin Dukgyal, along with the team. “They went first to Siliguri and from there, they proceeded on foot to Sikkim,” Tashi said. The team, however, was not allowed to cross over to Tibet.

Nima Palmo, another woman, had also sent her son to the Nathu-la border. She came to know later that the Shillong delegation was not allowed to cross over into Tibet.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Tibetans protest in Sikkim

It was yet another day, this was day three of protest against the Brutal Chinese Regime. The Peaceful Marcher's who took the long trek from Siliguri on 20th March arrrived here at the Sikkim Border On 23rd of march.

Till than they have been protesting for the lackadaiscal move by the Sikkimese Government, since they have not been allowed to gain access into the Capital of sikkim.

Today is the Third day of Protest,and they even called for unanimous decision to launch Indefinite hunger strike continuing from yesterday, for not letting them access. The youth's resenment was clearly visible about how deep the conflict was in tibet.

They are still determined to enter the border, but the spearhead of their organisation have called for patience and perseverence.

There was even an attempt by one fo the protestor's to inflame himself with,but immediately he was stopped by the Indian Police and the Tibetan Volunteer's who were also controlling their friends situation.

(Report by Tenzing Theckpa)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

“Bhandari still believes in suppression of women”

Gangtok: “Former Chief Minister and Sikkim Pradesh Congress Committee President, Mr. Nar Bahadur Bhandari, has made a negative comment on a Sikkimese cheli (woman), Mrs. Tika Maya Chamling, winning award in the International Florishow 2008. It reveals that Mr. Bhandari still believes in suppression of women as in 18-19 century”. This is said in a Sikkim Democratic Front press release issued by SDF Publicity Secretary, Mr. T. N. Sharma.
The release said, “The florishow at Saramsa Garden, which attracted over one lakh visitors, including domestic and foreign tourists, earned wide applause from all over the country and abroad. Local, national and international media opined that by hosting such an international event Sikkim’s prestige has been heightened. SDF party feels proud when any Sikkimese woman, by dint of her own capacity, is able to win awards in such an international level exhibition”.
The release also referred to another remark of Mr. Bhandari. “According to a report in a daily newspaper of March 24”, the release says, “Mr. Bhandari has tried to instigate members of Limbu-Tamang communities by asking them to ‘come out in the open with khukri’ (chopper) to get their rights. It can not be accepted that he is speaking in the interest of Limbu-Tamang, or he has any moral right for that, because it is he (Mr. Bhandari) who on 21 April 1987 had snatched away their rights”.
“Mr. Bhandari, who had said in 1994 that he would ‘kill people as leeches are killed by putting salt on them’, is now seen by the people as only a noise maker and nothing else”, the release said, adding, “SDF party is committed to provide Assembly seats to Limbu Tamang and make Sikkim a tribal State and the party is working in that direction from the State Assembly to Delhi”

Three Honours to Prof Mahendra P Lama

image New York, 19 March: Prof Mahendra P Lama today received the India-China Fellowship awarded to him by the prestigious New School University in New York. This Fellowship was awarded to him to recognise his leadership and commitment to the dialogue in India, China and the United States. While speaking at the glittering function held at the University in the heart of New York City in the United States, Prof Bob Kerrey, President of the University and former Senator admired Prof Lama profusely for his singleminded dedication and major contributions to issues of cross border cooperation, peace and development. Prof Lama will in the course of next fortnight lecture at various Universities in the US.

Prof Lama has also been invited as an International Observer for the crucial Constituent Assembly election in Nepal. The election will be held on 10 April 2008. A number of international organisations including the United Nation and European Union are supporting the National Election Observation Committee in Nepal to monitor the this path breaking election in the history of modern Nepal. The invitation letter to Prof Lama mentions that “Keeping in view your constant support, dedication and solidarity for the cause of human rights and democratic development in Nepal, we are pleased to extend this invitation to you in order to join as a short-term observer with the International Election Observation mission hosted by National Election Observation Committee (NEOC) in coordination with the Government of Nepal.” Prof Lama is one of very few international observers invited from the South and South East Asia region. The NEOC will be deploying a number of international overseers from all over the world in various polling booths spread throughout Nepal

Prof Lama has also been nominated as a member of the high level National Task Force to examine the issues of hill and mountain development in the country. This Task Force has been appointed by the Prime Minister of India as a sequel to the decision taken in the National Development Council Meeting held in last December 2008 in New Delhi. This Task force will prepare the full report on various development issues of the hills and mountain regions of India. The Task Force which is supervised by the Planning Commission in New Delhi is also likely to visit Darjeeling and Sikkim.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Kingdom without a king

30 years ago in India Today

Our jeep jolted to a halt before the border town of Rangpo. The Nepalese driver leapt out to survey the scene and said, “We will cross into Sikkim now. All this was India.” “But Sikkim is a part of India,” we said. “That is what they say,” he replied. It was under the shrewd gaze of New Delhi thousands of miles away that Sikkim changed governments.

In April 1975, the Government of India introduced the 36th Amendment Act making Sikkim the 22nd state of the Indian Union. The Sikkim issue, which had earlier developed into a national debate a year ago, never got complete hearing due to the declaration of Emergency.

In Gangtok, the deposed Chogyal’s eldest son’s death has caused a sudden tightening of political reflexes all around. The Sikkimese continue to recognise Chogyal as the divine defender of their faith. — Sunil Sethi

SDF supporters unhappy with local coordinator

Dissatisfied with the alleged improper work of the local coordinator of Sikkim Democratic Front, some youth supporters of Singtam held a meeting at Sirwani, Singtam on March 24 under the leadership of Mr. Prakash Subba, claiming to be an active member of SDF Party and Mr. Uttam Pradhan, a local resident and leading superstar of Nepali Film Industry. In the meeting, it was alleged that the coordinator of SDF Party, who has been assigned to work for the welfare of the youths of Singtam, ‘has not done anything beneficial for the educated unemployed youths’.
Mr. Prakash Subba said that the youths are ‘whole hearted supporters of SDF Party’ so it is the responsibility of the Party to work for their welfare. ‘We will always support SDF and we admire and follow its principles’, he said. He also said that they are very glad to be associated with SDF Party and they do not have any grievances against the Party or its principles. But they are unhappy with the work of the coordinator. ‘At present, the main obstacle between the principles and ideas of SDF Party and their execution by the youths is the coordinator’, he alleged. Mr. Uttam Pradhan mentioned unemployment in the State and sought ‘proper guidance of the SDF Party in making the educated unemployed youths self established and self sufficient’. The group decided to hold another meeting on March 26, gathering all the youths of Singtam, to form an association.

Tibetan marchers to Nathula reach Tar Khola

RANGPO, March 23:
Some 300 activists from the Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC) on a peace march from Siliguri in West Bengal to the Nathula Border, in an attempt to join the protest movement in Tibet reached the Tar Khola, 10th Mile area yesterday.
The marchers are planning to cover some 170 kilometers in eight days before reaching Nathula.
The protesters are just 7 km from Rangpo on the West Bengal side. They will attempt to enter Sikkim at the Rangpo Check Post tomorrow at 10.30 am, the protestors said.
However, the Sikkim government has already announced plans to stop the march from entering the State.
Security at the border check Post here has been beefed up after the protestors started their march. Since yesterday, every passenger has to pass heavy security checks before entering the State. East District, SP Dr. MS Tuli, who was at Rangpo to oversee the security arrangements, informed that the Police will not allow the protestors due to “security reasons.”
Ugen Sewang, North East Tibetan Youth Congress spokesperson told this correspondent over the phone that all the protestors have decided to enter Sikkim in the morning. “We are on a peaceful march and the Police must allow us to enter though Rangpo check post,” he said.
If the Police stop them, an alternative option will be decided upon, he said.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Peace marchers set off from Siliguri to join protests in Tibet

Phayul[Thursday, March 20, 2008 20:39]
The peace marchers gather at Kalachakra Phodang, Salugara before undertaking their long walk (Photo by Tenzin Nyima for
The peace marchers gather at Kalachakra Phodang, Salugara before undertaking their long walk (Photo by Tenzin Nyima for
Dharamsala, March 20: 300 pro-Tibet activists from the North-East region of India started on a peace march from Siliguri in West Bengal to Nathula Border in Sikkim in their attempt to join Tibetan protests going on in Tibet.

The march was flagged off at 2 p.m. on Thursday from Kalachakra Phodang, Salugara.

The peace march, organised by North-East Zonal Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC), has seen the participation of members of Regional Tibetan Women's Association as well as many local Tibetans and Tibet supporters.

Tibetans from Dimapur, Kohima, Shillong, Kalimpong, Darjeeling, Ravangla and other places are taking part in the march to join fellow Tibetans in their ongoing protests against China’s illegal occupation of Tibet.

16-year old Tenzin Passang and 78-year old Mr Lobsang, both from Ravangla Tibetan Settlement in Sikkim, are among the 300 odd marchers.

"The main aim of the march is to join the ongoing protest in Tibet," said Mr. Samdup, the media coordinator of the movement.

Photo by Tenzin Nyima for
Photo by Tenzin Nyima for
“The peace march to Tibet is a determined attempt to join fellow Tibetans inside Tibet in our fight against China’s illegal and repressive occupation of Tibet,” Urgen from Northeast RTYC told over the phone.

Pawo Dawa Gyalpo, president of North-East TYC, said, "This is the moment for action."

The marchers are planning to cover some 170kms in 8 days before reaching Nathu-La, a border post between Tibet and India. Sealed by India after the 1962 Sino-Indian War, it was re-opened in 2006 following numerous bilateral trade agreements.

One news media has, however, reported that the Sikkim government is already considering to stop the protesters at Rangpo, the border between West Bengal and Sikkim.

The marchers are, however, determined to go anyway and are expecting to enter Sikkim on coming on Monday, March 24, on their way to the Nathu-La border.

The peace marchers have put forward the following three demands to the Indian government and the international community to pay heed to:

1. To put pressure on the Chinese government to immediately stop violent crackdowns on Tibetan protesters in Tibet.

2. To urge for investigation by the UN into the brutal killings, detention, torture and arrests in Tibet since the protest started on March 10.

3. To boycott the Beijing Olympics as China has failed to improve its human rights record.

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Climbers banned from Everest as China seeks to stop protests on summit

The plans of several international expeditions and dozens of climbers to scale the world's highest peak in May and June have been thrown into chaos by China in effect closing the mountain on both sides.

The Chinese are anxious that nothing should disrupt the high point of the run-up to the Beijing Olympic Games in August - the carrying of the Olympic Torch up Everest's slopes as part of its relay procession around the globe, due to take place sometime in the first half of May.

To make sure that nothing does disrupt it, the Chinese closed the mountain's north side in Chinese-occupied Tibet last week. At the weekend came the news that they have persuaded Nepal to close it from the south side also.

The closures are likely to last for about the first 10 days in May, but this is the absolutely crucial time for Everest expeditions seeking the necessary acclimatisation on the mountain's lower slopes - and it means that most if not all expeditions will be impossible. Among the many disappointed climbers will be the veteran British explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes, who had hoped to make up for a failure to scale the peak in 2004.

Taking the torch up Everest is likely to prove a publicity coup for China on the grandest international scale. But the current nationalist unrest in Tibet, which led to violent protests in the capital, Lhasa, on Friday, is making the Beijing authorities extremely nervous.

Their anxiety is heightened by the fact that campaigns by Tibetan-independence activists have historically been supported by many climbers and mountaineers. Four American pro-Tibet demonstrators made their way to Everest base camp on the Tibetan side last year and unfurled a banner reading "One World, One Dream, Free Tibet 2008".

China announced the ban on climbing Everest from the Tibetan side on Wednesday in a letter to expedition companies from the China Tibet Mountaineering Association which said: "Concern over climbing activities, crowded climbing routes and increasing environmental pressures will cause potential safety problems in Qomolangma [Everest] areas. We are not able to accept your expedition, so please postpone your climbing."

News of the ban from the southern, Nepalese side came in an announcement from the Nepalese Tourism minister Prithvi Subba Gurung, who said that the closure was in response to a request from China, adding: "This is to prevent some people who could infiltrate and cause trouble during the time when they take the torch to the top."

The ban has thrown the climbing industry into turmoil. Sir Ranulph, for example, had been set make an attempt at scaling the summit on 15 May. However, the closure will leave no time for his expedition to fix ropes, cache oxygen and acclimatise. The 64-year-old had engaged the aid of the mountain guide and experienced Everest climber Kenton Cool, who had planned to take Sir Ranulph to the Alps in preparation for the Himalyan ascent. "With the mountain completely shut until 10 May our chances of a summit attempt are virtually zero," said Mr Cool. "Hopefully there is still room for negotiation with the authorities. We would only need a few days to stock camps and prepare, so we could still be in with a chance."

Beijing's Vice Mayor, Liu Jingming, who is overseeing Olympic preparations, said: "The torch relay to Mount Everest is a highlight of the whole relay and represents the idea of green Olympics, hi-tech Olympics and people's Olympics."

However, Mr Cool said that the Olympic Games were about competition and the celebration of sporting achievements, adding: "I don't see how closing the world's highest mountain to everyone but yourself is in the spirit of the games."

This year's Olympic Torch relay will begin on 25 March at Olympia, the ancient site of the games in Greece. From there it will travel to Athens and then to Beijing, arriving on 31 March. From Beijing, the torch will be carried by 21,880 torchbearers on a route passing through every continent except Antarctica before returning to China.

- Michael McCarthy and Jack Geldard

Skiing in Sikkim launched

To make Sikkim an adventure tourism hotspot, Sikkim Mountaineering Association (SMA) jointly with Blue Sky Tours and Travels of Gangtok introduced Ice Skiing at Phuni in Lachung and Yumthang on March 18.
Phuni is situated 18 kms from Lachung town in an altitude of about 11,500 ft. The first of its kind skiing in the State meant for general public and tourists was inaugurated by Mr. Hishey Lachungpa, Minister for Health and Family Welfare Department. The Ice Skiing would continue for fifteen days and it is open for all interested people of the State and tourists for entertainment in the marvelous snow. Mr. Kazi Sherpa, General Secretary of SMA, Pema Wangchuk Bhutia, Mohan Biswakarma, Mingma Sherpa, Dawa Sherpa and Sonam Wangchuk Lepcha preformed a breathtaking demonstration of Ice Ski. The six skiers have taken basic course of Ice Ski at Directorate of Mountaineering Allied Institute in Manali from February 11 to 25. On the inaugural day of the ski, there were many tourists. They were seen enjoying each and every moment on ski and playing with snow. They were even enjoying frequent fall on snow due to mproper body control. “We never expected to be ski in Sikkim. It is a great surprise and a pleasing experience for us from Sikkim. Now we don’t need to visit Manali for Ice Skiing. Sikkim is our Manali. We are not going to forget this special moment in our entire life”, said a group of domestic tourists who were visibly excited and happy.
Mr. Hishey Lachungpa appreciated the initiative taken by SMA and Blue Sky Tours and Travels for the promotion of adventure tourism in Sikkim. He said Ski as an adventure sport has a vast potential of attracting tourists from all over the world and Sikkim is fit for the promotion of Ski. Paljor Lachungpa, Managing Director of Blue Sky Tours and Travels,. said that principal objective of introduction of Ice Skiing is to promote adventure sports and tourism in the State, to generate employment, to boost tourism and to introduce Sikkim to the world in adventure tourism.

Phuni Valley beckons
Skiing in Sikkim now a reality

GANGTOK, March 19:
With the introduction of snow skiing at Phuni Valley on March 17, this picturesque valley located 18 km ahead of Lachung, will henceforth serve as the skiing centre where tourists visiting this part of the country could enjoy the sport in a relaxed pace.
The vast open spaces above the snowline have been open to the skiing enthusiasts. The awesome height at 11,000 feet and spread of the snow clad mountains, with the added advantage of powdered snow are tempting enough to magnetize the adventurous spirits of the avid skier, providing all the thrill and excitement attached to the game.
Realizing the immense prospect for tourism, the Blue Sky Tours and Travels in collaboration with Sikkim Mountaineering Association has successfully introduced the sport-a time for the tourists and locals to rejoice at.
The State Health Minister, Hissey Lachungpa officially inaugurated snow skiing in a function held at Phuni on March 17 in the presence of Senior Superintendent of Police (North)-Tshering Bhutia, Sub-Divisional Magistrate (Chungthang) Norgay Bhutia and Sub Divisional Police Officer (Chungthang)Tshering Norbu.
According to the organizers, the new Ice ski terrain being developed at Phuni valley will definitely fire-up the imagination of ski-lovers as it offers a new challenge to their spirit of adventure.
The educated unemployed youths of the region can now opt for undergoing a snow skiing course to become professional skiers and thereafter train the skiing enthusiasts both within and outside the State for monetary benefits, organizers said. Besides, the former can participate at snow skiing competitions at national and international levels.
Speaking to mediapersons, managing director of Blue Sky, Palzor Lachungpa, informed that the newly introduced snow skiing will be made available to tourists at the designated location for another 10-15 days on trial basis with its fee going up to as high as Rs 150 for a time duration of 30 minutes. “We will work on the project report on snow skiing, which will then be submitted to the State Government at the earliest for appraisal so as to play a host to the sport on a much broader perspective in the forthcoming future,” Mr Lachungpa added.
He further added that plans are underway on the part of the organizers towards organizing national level snow skiing competitions alongside to upgrade an advanced ski slope newly opened at Yumthang, 6 kms further north from Phuni and to introduce ski-doo snow racing with the sole objective to attract hordes of tourists to North Sikkim which otherwise the inflow of tourists was on the decline.
Meanwhile, Kazi Sherpa, a professional skier from Sikkim Mountaineering Association on his part stated that snow skiing facilities and training for beginners will be available during the best part of winter months starting from the first week of January to mid week of March but it would all depend upon the availability of snow. “This is now the only place in the entire north-east where the Ice skiers can indulge in their favorite sport in the winter months with a setting just perfect both for the beginners and the seasoned,” he maintained.
A group of six freshly trained professional skiers including Pema Wangchuk Bhutia hailing from Bojoghari in East Sikkim, Mohan Biswakarma (Saleptanki), Mingma Sherpa and Dawa Sherpa, both from Kupup, Sonam Wangchuk Lepcha (Burtuk) and Kazi Sherpa (Baluwakhani) recently attended a 15 day long Snow Skiing Course at Directorate of Mountaineering and Allied Sports at Manali (Himachal Pradesh) through the capacity building training programmes of the Sikkim government.
These professional skiers are available to guide and instruct the skiing enthusiasts in the sport.
It was a short duration requirement based course for beginners. The trainees were imparted training in elementary techniques of skiing like ski exercises, sliding on skis, straight running, side slip, snow plough and turn, fall and recovery.
Speaking to Pema Wangchuk Bhutia, he stated that he is positively looking forward to undergo a further advanced training course in skiing and thereafter participate in skiing competitions.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Florishow opens up new avenues for the floriculturists in Sikkim

By Tashi Pradhan, Gangtok (Sikkim), Mar 19 : The first International Florishow, held in Sikkim recently, pulled large number of participants from within the country and abroad.

Lauding the effort of the State Government, the participants viewed the festival as unique opportunity for commercial purposes.

Showcasing the huge variety of flowers, the Florishow exploded in myriad hues of beautiful blossoms.

Sikkim is renowned for its rich flora and the Florishow displayed around 600 species of orchids, 240 species of trees and ferns, 150 varieties of gladioli and 46 types of the world-famous rhododendrons during this show.

Home to more than 600 orchids, Sikkim is known as nature's own garden. The Florishow was first ever-professional floriculture expo facilitating buyer seller meet.

A dozen delegates from foreign countries and fifty-eight delegates from across the country thronged this show.

The Florishow proved to be an ideal place for professionals to look for future supply of all types of orchids from Sikkim.

The participants were more than elated for having been part of such an event, which opened a plethora of commercial prospects for them alongside opening a window to international flower markets.

The international participants pointed out that it is basically the conducive weather conditions that sustain the growth of a large variety of orchids in the state.

"There are lots of opportunities for flower production because the climate is very good. You don't have very high and low temperature. So, there are unlimited possibilities for flower production in Sikkim," said Jan Schuttrups, a participant from Netherlands.

Maarten van der leeden, sales manager of a firm, which supplies raw material to farmers from Netherlands appreciated the fact that the prices of flowers in India are much cheaper than in his country.

"Our raw material is supplied to the farmers, to the projects here in Sikkim. So, we are suppliers of young rose plants. The difference between Sikkim and Holland as far as orchids are concerned is that the orchids in Sikkim are on a developing stage. The cost price here is much lower than you can expect in Holland. So, we have huge future for orchids here," said Maarten.

The Agriculture and Cooperation Department saw the event as an opportunity to exhibit the flora of the state.

The International FloriShow was organised by the State Department of Horticulture, supported by the Union Ministry of Agriculture and various concerned Central institutions.

Sikkim is well-known for its rich flora and the festival displayed around 600 species of orchids, 240 species of trees and ferns, 150 varieties of gladioli and 46 types of the world-famous rhododendrons during this show.

--- ANI

I want to be a decision-maker: Bhutia

GANGTOK, March 18:
"One should never forget one's roots," Baichung Bhutia said somewhere during the flurry of felicitations Sikkim had organized to celebrate his Padmashree award. It was but expected that the star striker should end up where it had all begun for him.

After the long journey and the many stopovers, you would have expected the tight embrace of fatigue when he reached Tinkitam Tam with wife Madhuri and their pug Max on Monday afternoon. Instead, he suddenly seemed to have been revitalized. He had a cousin's marriage to attend and Bhutia was soon getting himself ready for the party. In a bokhu (traditional a traditional Sikkimese dress) — "this is the same one I wore during my marriage" — Bhutia hopped into his car and drove Madhuri and mother Doma Dorjee Bhutia to his aunt's place. TOI found a front seat as the India captain negotiated the sharp turns and wicked bends. Excerpts:

Your first visit to Tinkitam after getting the Padmashree. Must be feeling great.

Every year I come but this visit is special for me — 'Padmashree' Baichung visiting his parents. The reception at Rongpo was also fantastic. I am really grateful to the people of Sikkim.

There is so much tranquillity here...

I generally come here after a football season. The grind that I go through in Kolkata sometimes gets to me. I come here to recharge my batteries. I like the serenity of the mountains. Unlike people in the plains, people here are very laid back. I do lose my temper on the football pitch these days; after 15 years in the plains I suppose I too have picked up some of the traits.

When you first left Tinkitam did you ever think of becoming the face of Indian football?

Never. I just wanted to be good footballer. Dreamt of wearing the national jersey one day. God was very kind to me. I was not very ambitious. I just wanted to play the game I was in love with. It was only after 1997 that I felt I was making a name for myself.

Are you scared of failure?

I never allowed success and failure to rule my life. I have always taken life as it came. Whenever I have a bad match I try to forget it. It's no point mulling over what could have been.

This success, the adulation... Who do you think played a major role?

My parents, my brother (RD Bhutia) and also the coaches I have played under. I can't pinpoint one person. Everybody played a role in shaping me.

Tashi Namgyal Academy would have also played a big role...

Of course. It helped me respect my opponents and be faithful to the game. It taught me to be disciplined. Manas Chakraborty, my first coach, was also a very important man early in my career.

You got very emotional during the reception at the TNA.

I have some many memories there. While travelling from Delhi to Ajmer, the tournament where I was first noticed, most of the TNA players didn't have reserved ticket. So Manas sir and some of the boys threatened to travel sitting on the roof! Finally, the TT agreed to give us berths and the players came down. It was hilarious.

What's wrong with Kolkata football; hardly anything to write home about in the last four years?

The clubs have to change their mentality first. They still think supporters will keeping coming when worldwide clubs are reaching out to increase the fan base. They are caught in a ridiculous time warp; times are changing but Kolkata clubs are not.

Why do you think fans stopped coming to the grounds?

Poor facilities is clearly one of the reasons. Leaking pipes, shoddy toilets, no parking space... who will come? You tell me, would you want to take your family out for a soccer match in Kolkata? It's so lousy.

But still there is passion amongst the fans....

Exactly. The clubs are taking this passion for granted. They are going for small term gains while losing the bigger picture.

You sound very upset with the set-up?

Upset, because I love Kolkata. I want to see Kolkata football regaining its lost glory. People in Kolkata are much more pragmatic and enterprising now. The city is also very happening. If everything is going in the right direction why should football go the other way?

Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?

Ten years back I didn't know I would be a Padmashree one day. So, how can I say where I will be in 2018? But one thing is for sure: I will be at a place where I can make changes. I want to be a decision-maker whose views will be taken seriously and ideas executed well.

Like All India Football Federation chief?

I know you want a headline (laughing). Seriously speaking, I am still learning the nuances of football administration. I will say I haven't planned my future yet. I can have my own company, can be with football also. We will wait and see.

Lastly, what's the immediate plan?

I am taking my parents to Sydney where my brother stays. I'll be returning after a fortnight and heading straight to the national camp.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

प्रकृतिको आँखामा आँशु, गाजावालाको रुष्टपनाले पराकाष्ठा नाघ्यो

नेपाली मूलकी छोरी प्रकृति गिरीलाई हिजो शनिवार को कार्यक्रममा जुरीले निकै तल्लो दर्जामा राखेर मार्किङ गरे, उनलाई मध्यम दिइयो । मध्यम भनेको फेल हो, उनीहरुको भाषामा । टप थ्रीको लेवलमा पुग्ने प्रकृतिको गायन कला नभएकै हो त ? पक्कै होइन । उनलाई जुरीले राम्रो नम्वर नदिनुको एउटै कारण छ, उनी नेपाली मूलकी छोरी हुन । बारम्बार व्यापक भोटले लिडिङ गरिराखेकी प्रकृतिसंग जुरीहरु डराएर उनलाई प्रतियोगिताबाट बाहिर निकाल्न बहुत प्रयासहरु पहिले पनि नभएका होइनन, हिजो त उनीहरुको यो सौतेलोपनले पराकाष्ठा नै नाघ्यो ।

कुनाल गाजावालको गुरु आदेश शिवास्तव जो कार्यक्रममा अतिथि थिए उनले प्रृकतिलाई सरताज सवोत्तम दिनु र कार्यक्रमका जुरी कुनाल गाजावालाले मध्यम दिनु भनेको कस्तो जजमेन्ट हो ? हिजोको कार्यक्रम हेरेपछि सवै नेपालीहरु तथा प्रकृतिका फयानहरु निकै रुष्ट छन् । भूपालका हजारौं दर्शकहरुले प्रकृति लाई वान्स मोर भनेर व्यापक सपोट र उनको गायकलाई उत्कृष्ट मान्दामान्दै पनि जुरीलाई प्रकृतिको परफरमेन्स (मध्यम) फेल देखिनु भनेको के हो ? के कुनाल गाजावालालाई नियन्त्रण गर्ने मान्छे नभएकै हो त ?

हिजो प्रकृतिलाई एउटै कार्यक्रमम बारम्बार रुवाइयो । यतिवेला नेपाली मन कति रोयो होला, यसको कुनै सीमा छैन । उस्तै परे भारतमा हिजोको छोटे उस्ताद कार्यक्रमलाई लिएर व्यापक प्रदर्शन हुने पककापक्की छ । कुनाल गाजावालाको यो व्यवहारले कुनाललाई सवैको नजरबाट गिराएको छ । यस्तो चरित्र बोकेको मान्छेलाई गजेन्द्र सिं जस्ता मान्छेले कार्यक्रममा जुरीको स्थान दिनु हास्यापद हो भन्ने भावनाहरु व्यापक भइराखेको पाइन्छ । यस्तो नालायकीपन वोक्ने कुनाल गाजावाललाई जुरीको पदबाट सधैको लागि निकालेर फयाक्ने जिम्मा अव आम प्रकृतिका फयानहरुको तथा गजेन्द्र सिं को हो भन्ने आवाजहरु वुलन्द भइराखेका छन् ।

अव हुने मेघा फाइनल अप्रिल पाँचमा डिसिजन हुने हुँदा सम्पूर्ण जनताहरु, प्रकृतिका फयानहरु तथा आम नागरिकहरुले प्रकृतिलाई एकपटक फेरि व्यापक भोट दिएर कुनाल गाजावाललाई सवैको सामु नङयाउँन जरुरी भइसकेको छ ताकी अर्को रियालिटी शो मा यी यावत कुराहरु नदोहोरिउन । प्रकृतिलाई भोट दिएर टप टु मा पुर्‍याउँने जिम्मा तपाईहरु सवैको हो त्यसैले प्रकृतिलाई भोट दिनुहोस्।

प्रकृतिलाई इन्टरनेटवाट भोट गर्न यहाँ थिच्नुहोस्

Prakriti eliminated from Chotte Ustaad

Comments collected on the elimination of Prakriti Giri:



Green Belt
Green Belt

Prakriti Got Eliminated :

* Yesterday, they declared the result in Jaipur and Prakriti got eliminated. She did not cry.
We all agree that she sings average but we were seeking advice how to make the judges feel that they cannot humilate by saying whatever they feel like.
Many people were suggesting Prakriti to quit from the show. Yesterday after the result was declared her aunty told judges that after watching saturday's episode people were suggesting her to quit but she did not quit because GHORKHALIS never run away from the battlefield, rather prefer to die while fighting in the battlefield. CHOTE USTAAD was like battlefiled for Prakriti and she being a daughter of GHORKHALI she fought till the end.
She told judges that while commenting on child try to understand the physocology of child also. They said sorry to prakriti personally.Anyways, prakriti is always a CHOTE USTAAD for us. Dont miss to watch Friday's episode.

Dont miss to see Friday's episode.

* Sad to know that she got eliminated. I am sure it is the judges who are fully responsible for her elimination. Humiliation to small kids in public should be banned from such programs. Those judges may be popular singers and music director, they totally lost their image as good human being at least from me. Jastai thulo bhaye pani behura ta dekhai halyo.

Cold Mountain
* Yes, this was bound to happen. They would not have let her win under any circumstances. She has been very brave, gracious and has maintained her dignity. She should be given a hero's welcome in Darjeeling.

Prakriti Eliminated !!!!!!!!!
So finally Ganjendra and the Judges succeeded in eliminating Prakriti who had become dangerous for the Two Super Talented Gals , Anvesha and Aishwarya.

Prakriti U rockssssssssssssssssssssssssssss

* I am more than Happy for her as she will not be facing any more humiliating comments from those ***** Judges ...

Will Miss U Prakriti !!!

* Atleast she'll not become the victim of blaming game now....Prakriti is our little star...Wish her all the success in life....and according to a post in Darjeeling-forum, her mother told the judges that public was suggesting to quit after such humliating comments but she diddn't coz gorkhalis prefer to die in battle-field than to run away!!

* Wow I am so touched by the comments of her mother ...

Great person she is yaar...

Hats off to her aunty......

* So finally the Judges may rott in hell wid their deserving contestants

Prakriti wuz very gud although not trained... She wuz natural & we all are very proud of her....

An untrained voice can give so much competition to those so-called trained voice... Just imagine how bright Prakriti's future is.. Kudos to Prakriti!!

And Judges now REST IN PEACE!!!


BRETT rOcKzZz...


I'm by no meens a fan of prakriti...I'm just postin dis comment coz 4 d 1st time i felt dat d judges were a bit 2 harsh on her.She din't sing "gila gila" dat badly 2 get a madhyam...Dey cud hav eesily givn her n "uttam" or juz,juz abt atiuttam...d 2nd song,,,sur was not at all fine,but again,madhyam was 2 low...she shud hav been givn uttam 4 dat 1.....she has sung sum of d songs worse dan dese(d 1 in salman's episode) but has managed a sarvottam nd atiuttam in dose...

Judges had 2 do dis or else,widout ANWESHA,dere wud hav been no use of watchin d finals,coz i'm sure anwesha is much behind prakriti in terms of public voting. But its gud dat judges respect "true talent",so dey brout up d "BEST-2"...D gals...Now since prakriti is eliminated,den guys 4m dis comm,its my sincerest reqst 2 u all 2 vote 4 anwesha...Music will loose if anwesha looses...............

An u guys shud b concentratin more on bringin out d "technical aspects" rathr dan bringin out "BASELESS TOPICS"...Y dont u talk abt prakriti's weeknesses nd come up wid suggestions 4 her impruvement,coz she terribly needs technical lessons nd shreya did xplain 2 her abt d mistakes,she committed in antara of d 2nd song,so u shudnt hav ny complaints 4m shreya(unless u ppl actually paid ny heed 2 her xplanation or u guys undrstnd music at all)...

And as 4 prakriti,she needs constant riyaz...inspite of vyom being untrained,he sounded much bettr dan prakriti nd was technically also bettr...Prakriti shud atleest devote 10mints 2 deep-breethin nd work on her "voice throw" nd "improvisation"...She is still under training period nd i feel her "GURU" isnt devotin much time on her "weak areas" nd yes,she shud also work on "high pitches"....And it wud b bettr if she concentrates more on becumin n actress or a model,coz she's more suitable 4 dose..................


::: SuMann :::

Kunal may be technically right...but thts not the way to handle the emotion of a 12 yrs old kid. He should hv restrained himself from passing such a humiliating comments.


๑۩๑• รσм

Kunal's comments is rigth but i don't like his comments .........


ღ●๋• ภคvεεภ

Chaadi Smoochy

Yawn Yawn tired of all these cries over Prashant & now Prakriti ... Our community people are brought into the show 4 humiliating dem... Always finding fault wid der singing... Waste of time.. Waste of money... And on top of dat humiliation for the whole community.. To hell wid the show... M neither voting nor watching it anymore

A 12 year old kid is being embarassed in front of whole public.. Shame on Judges


::: SuMann :::

Here comes the difference of opinion b/w u and I.

I am really happy not to vote for her atleast today as I dont want this Lovely innocent Princess to be humiliated more by those ..... Miser Judges and Producer.

I apologise for this ..... U do as per ur wish Smoochy!!!

I appreciate ur thinking.

* Photobucket

Prakriti Humiliated !!!!!

Is this the way to treat a 12 yrs old kid publicly?.....

Just imagine what had happened to her self confidence especially after getting such a humiliating comments from the judges. NOw its no point remaining in the show or even winning it bcoz she had been made to realised tht she is a Loser even if she wins the title.

Kunal's statement " ...Pop star bansakti ho par Chhote Ustaad neva.." so its totally useless to remain in the show.

PRAKRITI WILL BE MORE THAN HAPPY IF SHE GETS ELIMINATED IN THE UPCOMING EPISODE... if she somehow gets the chance to be in top 2 then she will be humiliated publicly tht will Shattered her Self Confidence and she will never ever be able to take up singing as her career.

I wish Prakriti to be out this time........for her better being...and I think every like minded ppl should not vote for her even a single vote if they really love this kid and after her elimination the Judges should be taught how to handle sensitive feelings of a Kid.

No vote for Prakriti will be a fitting reply to these insane Judges and the producer of the show who will lose the revenue from SMSes and landline voting.

All the best for Prakriti for her future!!!

U are our Chhote Ustaad and future Rock Star.