By Our Reporter
Although Kathmandu is not an industrial city and its sky has remained clear since October, the level of dust and smoke in air in many places of the city has crossed minimum index of 230 cubic metres.
The latest media reports said the pollution index has increased to 267 cubic metre, which is higher than the normal limit.
Dust particles and smoke are the key air pollutants in Kathmandu. The increment of traffic and human activities are blamed for the air pollution. Moreover, the road widening works, which have been in progress for the past five years and the construction of the houses damaged by the earthquake have further polluted the air in the Kathmandu Valley.
The pollution level has increased with the onset of cool winter season resulting in the rise of pollution-related health ailments like asthma, cough, common cold and heart diseases.
From housewives to those who go for morning walks are found suffering from different ailments. Though people could be seen wearing masks, experts claim that the masks are not enough to prevent one from the bad effect of air pollution.
“I have to sweep my houses twice as dust covers almost everything. I can notice thick layer of dust in the TV screen, furniture and kitchen utensils, Radhika Khanal, a woman of Koteshwore, said.
Even the green vegetables grown in her gardens are covered by the dust.
“I am fed up with dust, I have no way to overcome this problem,” she said.
Her neighbour Sita Nepal has similar story to tell. “Even the ropes stretched to dry clothes in the roof have covered by dust.
WHO in October this year had warned about the growing pollution in Kathmandu. According to an analysis of WHO, 36 people out of every 100,000 die in Nepal from outdoor air pollution leading to heart diseases, lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and stroke.
Heaps of garbage accumulated everywhere in the city, old vehicles, smoke emanating from brick kilns and the dusts from the under-construction roads have been the main agents of air pollution.
Interestingly, the government has paid little attention to reduce the air pollution. Even the government has failed to remove the old vehicles despite introducing a policy to that direction.
Doctors have already warned that the air pollution could be the main cause of death in Kathmandu if proper measures were not taken to control it.
Demise of Mustangi king Palbar Bista a loss to the nation
Former king of Mustang Jigme Dorje Palbar Bista passed away while undergoing treatment at Om Hospital in Kathamndu Friday morning.
The 86-year-old Raja was suffering from multiple ailments including asthma and blood pressure since long. He was taken to hospital on last Tuesday after he complained of respiratory problem.
Born at Lomanthang in Upper Mustang, Palbar Bista was the third son of late Mustangi king Angun Tenjing Trandul. He had ascended to the throne after his father died in 1964.
He had been stripped of his title in 2008 following the abolishment of monarchy from Nepal.
Although king Mahendra abolished the practice of keeping Raja Rajauta, the Mustangi king was a big admirer of King Mahendra and King Birendra.
Of the four kings which were not abolished, Parbal Bista of Mustang was one. The other three retained kings were those of Salyan, Bajhang and Jajarkot. All these four kings enjoyed honorary title of the Nepal Army until they were stripped of their title in 2008. However, the Mustangi king was highly revered even after his title was stripped.
He had played a key role to control the Khampa revolt in Mustanf and maintain national integrity.
He used to say that all the Buddhist followers should respect the politics king Mahendra applied for the national unity and integrity and the peace campaign launched by king Birendra. He used to say that both Mahendra and Birendra were visionary kings.
He has been staying at Boudhha of Kathmandu for the last few years. His last rites were performed at Teku confluence as per the Buddhist tradition.