, pub-6463624976770492, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 Proud to be a Sikkimese

Friday, June 05, 2020

Environment Day 2020 celebrated at Shantinagar

Singtam, June 5:  Dr. MK Sharma, Health Minister and Area MLA gave his short visit to Shantinagar, Singtam to attend the World Environment day organised by Shantinagar Gaon Sudhar Samiti. Also present on the occasion were Tekendra Sharma, BDO, Khamdong BAC, M Narayan Sharma, RO, Singtam Forest Office and members of Shantinagar Gaon Sudhar Samiti. More than 70 saplings of different species were planted along the Shantinagar Walkway. 

Krishna Chettri, President, SGSS thanked Dr. Sharma and other distinguished guests for his auspicious presence. He further appreciated the presence of the members of Shantinagar Gaon Sudhar Samiti early in the morning for today’s event. He spoked about Deo Kumari Pradhan, the senior-most member in her 80s who never fails to attend any event. Media person Nandu Dutraj, Nirmal Mangar and Priya was also present.

Tuesday, June 02, 2020

Singtam Newar Sakha organises Blood Donation at District Hospital

SINGTAM, JUNE 1: Members of Newa Bhay Bowneykutti, Singtam Sakha under Sikkim Newar Guthi conducted one day blood donation camp at District Hospital Singtam. Twelve individuals both male and female participated at the donation camp.  Popular cine star Uttam Pradhan, member of NBB also visited the hospital to encourage the noble cause.

Speaking on the occasion, Binod Pradhan, President NBB said, we had been talking with the hospital management regarding the necessity of blood and it was an appropriate time for us also to help them at this need of hour. The hospital authority had requested the members to remain as standby for the next blood donation camp to be held at District Hospital Singtam on June 5 (Friday) as such only 12 members contributed the blood donation, today. Last month, we had provided two weeks volunteer service to the hospital, Pradhan added.

NBB through this press release thanked different officials of District Hospital Singtam including Dr Tshering Laden (CMO, EAST), Dr Tempo Gyaltsen (DMS), Mr Somnath Pandey (Sr. MSO), Dr Diki Bhutia (Blood Bank In-charge), Mr DR  Dhakal (Sr. Technical Officer), Mrs Sapana Chettri (Blood Bank Technician) & Mrs Diki Lepcha ( Sr. Nurse) for their valuable support.

Following members donated their blood – Abhisek Pradhan (O+ve), Deo Kumar Pradhan (A+ve), Dhiraj Pradhan (B+ve), Gopal Pradhan (B+ve), Manoj Pradhan (B+ve), Mani Kumar Pradhan (A+ve), Madhusudan Pradhan (A+ve), Prashant Pradhan (O+ve), Shyam Pradhan (O+ve), Sishir Pradhan (A+ve), Anisha Pradhan (O+ve) and Karma Lepcha (A+ve).

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Singtam Heritage Post Box and its story

I was part of a beautiful concept brought by Roshan Prasad; our own popular philatelist from Singtam to re-install a neglected Post Box found lying near the old post office building at the heart of the bazaar.
In one of its kind event, we the members of Sikkim Philatelic and Numismatic Society added a page on the map of world’s postal history when we removed the neglected post-box gave new colours and had its permanent installation near the Water Fountain as a Heritage Post Box. An earlier Sikkim postal cancellation marks along with establishment of Post Office in Singtam in 1903 was written on the stone slab below the base of the Post Box. First of its kind in Sikkim and a proud place of being few in India and the world.
KN Rai, then Speaker, Sikkim Legislative Assembly inaugurated the Heritage Box on the event Inspire 2017 – A Hobby Fest. The event coincided with the 12th anniversary of the formation of Sikkim Philatelic and Numismatic Society. An exhibition on hobby was held at Bihari Dharamsala, Singtam on May 30th, 2017- the first hobby fest of Sikkim. Inspire 2017- a hobby fest featured display of stamps, coins, bank notes, antiques, matchbox collection, autographs, old newspapers, identity cards and button flowers.

Three years passed by, we received numerous call of appreciation; our photograph of the Heritage Post Box of Singtam got published at various philatelic magazines world-wide. We just wanted to have the name of Singtam on the world map. We today have succeeded but this wasn’t as easy as it look.
Two days ahead of the event, the place where we had decided to install the Heritage Post Box at the water fountain site; despite having permission from Area MLA, Singtam Police Station and the Singtam Nagar Panchayat we were stopped to do so. We wanted passer-by people to see the Post Box and feel proud of the century old postal history of Singtam.
A huge section of crowd came forward and alleged the ‘dustbin’ – the word used for our Heritage Post Box to be thrown away. In that mass there were few good human souls who spoked for our cause.  Finally after few hours of noises we were forced to shift our structure to the corner on the back of a paan dokan. The crowd justified – the structure would disturb their wedding function on the way to Bihari Dharamsala. But today, on that much chosen place we have a Police Sign Board of No Parking – and that very crowd was there to praise the efforts of the Police Station to have the No Parking Sign Board.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Goddess Kumari: the legends of its origin- i

Ten years back on my first visit to Indra Jatra festival at Zero Point, Gangtok I happened to see a photo frame of a small girl in red costume significantly distinct from other girls of her age with the painted third eye on her forehead. That was my first day with Indra Jatra, Newar’s biggest festival at Sikkim and off course with the goddess Kumari, which in 2011 was declared a Government Holiday by the State Government of Sikkim. The festival highlighted the pulling off a chariot by the devotees with a photo frame of Goddess Kumari on it that was moved through the streets of Gangtok from Zero Point to MG Marg. The chariot was led by masked dancers with faces of deities in honour of God Indra and a long procession of Newar devotees.

Getting back to the story of Kumari, it is said there are eleven living goddess known as Kumari in Nepal. The Kumari of Kathmandu also known as the Royal Kumari is considered to be the most significant and largely followed by the Newar population across the globe.

In Nepal, the Newars follows an exceptional customary in which young girls with special characters are formally installed as living Kumari ; regularly worshiped until they attain some biological impurities and they are replaced with another young girl who also has to undergo some set-ups to be identified as a Kumari. The history of Kumari worship in Nepal is hidden in a great deal of legend and mystery. Though there are evidence that a goddess of this name had been worshiped for a very long time.

Him Lal Ghimire in his article A Study of Living Godess Kumārī: The Source of Cultural Tourism in Nepal writes ‘Kumari is derived from the Sanskrit word Kaumarya, which means princess. The word Kumārī literally means “virgin girl” in Nepali. The Kumārī or Kumārī Devi comes from the Hindu faith however most of the “traditional” Kumārī in Kathmandu are from Newar community. The Kumārī is a prepubescent girl who is hailed as manifestations of divine and spiritual energy, the living incarnation of the Hindu goddess of power Durga who is also named as Talejū (Tulaja) Bhawani, Bhagawati, Kālī, Pārvatī, Tripurasundarī, Ambikā etc’.

The word Taleju is derived from the indigenous Newar language and translates approximately as the “Goddess of the High Temple” as it is found in a book An Advertised Secret:  The Goddess Taleju and the King of Kathmandu, in Tantra in Practice published in 2005 which indicates her status as the chosen deity of Nepalese kings dating back to the fourteenth century when this goddess likely first migrated to Nepal from northern Indian.

Most of the chronicles and oral traditions however place the origin of the royal worships in the Malla period.  MR Allen mentions in his book Kumari or ’virgin’ worship in Kathmandu valley published in 1976, naming Trailokya Malla, a late sixteenth-century ruler of an undivided kingdom with his capital at Bhadgaon, Siddhinarasingh, a seventeenth century king of Patan, and yet others Jayaprakasa Malla, the mid-eighteenth century Kathmandu monarch who lost his kingdom to the Gorkhas among those who were involved in Kumari worshiping culture.

“Throughout India, Nepal, and other regions of South Asia there is a strong and longstanding ritual tradition—evidence of Kumārī worship dates back to the origins of India’s oldest scripture, the Ṛig Veda (circa 2000 B.C.E.)—in which prepubescent girls are venerated as incarnations (avatāra) of the divine feminine, called Devī or Śakti” quotes Jeffrey S. Lidke in his book Kumārī:  Nepal’s Eternally Living Goddess. 

Kumari is highly regarded as a deity whose blessings come true for those who attends her. As such every day many devotees seek for her blessings. She need to follow her rituals very strictly that she cannot talk to anyone except her family members or her caretakers. As such every day many devotes seek for her blessings. A member of her family must worship her each morning as she sits on her throne. Usually it’s her mother who dresses her every day in red clothing, paints her special design and other marking as Kumari has to appear. She lives in her Kumari Ghar with her parents or caretakers; she can never go outside other than to attend a few major festivals during the year. When she has to attend any ceremonies, she is carried.

Legends say, Kumari used to bless the King by marking his forehead with tika mixed with uncooked rice grain and red colour. The blessing during the Kumari Jatra festival brought good fortune to the King and his kingdom was protected from evil forces. The identification of the royal Kumari with the Great Goddess reveals a key facet of her identity and function as a living divinity. She is the embodiment of a power or shakti that protects the nation against any and all enemies of state.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Blood-sucking parasites killed thousands of pigeons at Singtam (2009)

It was in 20th of May, 2009, I first published the news of mysterious death of pigeons all over Singtambazaar at my blog. The pigeons were found dead on roads, house stairs, drains, house roofs and everywhere it was found. People denied any sort of Bird Flu but talked about some sort of disease in their head and die within a day.

The death of pigeons did not stop for the next one and half months and in an average 30 to 40 deaths was reported. The strange death of this avian creature was published in the newspapers and one of the national newspapers went on to say more than 10,000 deaths had occurred. It was false news but to my research the death case had been around 2000.  

I was too curious to know about its death and I closely held one dead bird from the nearby bazaar food go-down premises and found small fly like insect with pointed antenna. These pigeons are being prey to these small blood sucking flies. Those flies carry infectious disease that resulted in loss of feathers on neck and rest of body; skin inflammation was also found. These parasitic flies could be seen through naked eyes hiding behind the feathered wings and around neck.

In June 25th, the press release from KC Bhutia, Joint Director, Disease Investigation Cell, State Animal Husbandry Department said “The birds getting wet during the rains created conditions conducive for the parasites to breed,” As per the official records, 56 cases of unnatural pigeon deaths over the past two months have been reported from a particular region of the state. This apart, de-contamination campaign at the pigeonholes at residences has also been launched. These measures have yielded positive results and no fresh case of pigeon death has been reported from anywhere in the state over the past two weeks,” said Mr Bhutia. The report was based on the first batch of samples sent to the Regional Disease Diagnostics Laboratory of Guwahati.

Social activist Rudra Narsing Sakya donates hygiene kits

Rongli, 24th May 2020 : Social activist Rudra Narsing Sakya from Rongli Bazar today presented four set of PPE kits, two bottles of hand sanitizer, eleven numbers of N95 mask and two numbers of Non-Contract Forehead Infrared Thermometer to different officials of Rongli. The presentation of these materials was done at the premises of Rongli Police Station maintaining the social distance in presence of PR Dulal , SDM, Rongli Sub-Division.

The materials donated the officials included – Bhim Pradhan (BDO, Regu BAC), Dr. T. N. Sherpa (Medical Officer Incharge, Rongli PHC), Tashi C. Bhutia (SHO, Rongli Police Station) and Dawa Tshering Bhutia (Panchayat, 28 Rongli Changeylakha GPU).

news by Praveen Pradhan

Friday, May 22, 2020

Newa Bhay Bowney Kuthi, Singtam completed one week volunteer at hospital

20.05.20, Singtam: Newa Bhay Bowney kuthi, Singtam completed a week-long voluntary service to the District Hospital Singtam as a support to the administration in its fight against Covid-19. NBB volunteers had requested people to sanitize their hands compulsorily while entering the hospital and follow social distance norms during the registration process as per the guidelines of the administration. The volunteers provided masks, hand wash, hand sanitizer along with counseling to the individuals who did not follow rules and guidelines while entering the hospital.

NBB also provided one month ration to migrant labours identified by the DMS who needed support at this hour. Dr. Tempo Gyaltsen, DMS, DHS appreciated the effort of the NGO for providing volunteers and creating awareness at such a time which eases the pressure off from the administration and help them focus on other important things.
Binod Pradhan, President, NBB would like to thank Dr Tshering Laden (CMO East) , Dr Tempo Gyaltsen (DMS), Mr Somnath Pandey (Sr.MSO), Doctors, Nurse and staff of DHS for their encouragement & such opportunities where the members of NBB offered support to the Hospital and also promised to provide support whenever required.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Picnic photograph of members of Singtam Driver Association

Picnic photograph of members of Singtam Driver Association-(most probably 1980s)
LtoR: Lakpa Daju, Basant Agarwal, Hira Pradhan, Aatup Lepcha,
Gandhey (गन्दे), Somaney Aaseng.
(Identified by Mohan Pradhan Neeraj)