Brits lobby against visiting Nepal due to Gadhimai
KATHMANDU, Nov 19
Tourism and Civil Aviation Minister Deepak Chandra Amatya, who went to Britain last week to promote Nepal’s tourism, was left speechless when he was asked questions about animal sacrifice at the Gadhimai Fair.
Minister Amatya, who was there to participate in the World Travel Market 2014, was not just asked questions about animal sacrifice but was also handed over a petition signed by over 72,000 Brits.
He has reported about that to the President’s Office, Prime Minister’s Office and the cabinet after feeling bad during his visit. Secretary at the Tourism Ministry Suresh Man Shrestha says Brits have been lobbying to advise British tourists to not visit Nepal due to Gadhimai.
This may seriously affect the Nepali tourism industry. A total of 42,300 British tourists had visited Nepal in 2012, and 35,600 in 2013.
Tourism entrepreneurs are expressing concerns stating that the campaign started by animal rights activists against animal sacrifice at Gadhimai across Europe can seriously affect arrival of European tourists.
They fear that fall in arrival of European tourists, who are considered to be high-spending, can seriously affect the tourism industry. Foreign missions in Nepal, expressing serious interest about animal sacrifice during the Gadhimai Fair, have also urged the government to stop slaughter of animals at an open space. Joanna Lumley, who has fought for rights of the British Gurkhas, had also publicly appealed to stop that some time ago.
“British campaigners have been urging Brits to not visit Nepal accusing Nepalis to be the most violent and cruel in the world citing Gadhimai. This is set to be the biggest setback for our tourism industry. We have informed all the stakeholder bodies and advised them about the issue,” secretary Shrestha adds.
He reveals that over 72,000 Brits have signed petition against sacrifice of hundreds of thousands of animals at Gadhimai and such campaigns spreading rumors about Nepal have also been held in other countries emulating Britain.
Constituent Assembly (CA) member from CPN-UML Rajya Laxmi Golchha on Tuesday had moved the Supreme Court to stop animal sacrifice.
The Gadhimai Fair is organized every five year and around 500,000 animals are sacrificed during the fair.
Ban on filming/photo
Secretary Shrestha reveals that the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation has already directed Bara administration to stop any kind of filming/photography during the Gadhimai Fair.
“The ministry cannot speak about whether to allow sacrifice or not. But photos and videos of that has seriously harmed Nepal’s tourism and culture,” he states.
He says filming ban has been imposed this year as the foreigners have expressed concern due to the video filmed during the last edition five years ago.
It is not about the filming! It is not about doing it in an enclosed rather than open space! It is not about reducing the numbers of those innocents who are “sacrificed” from 500,000 to a lesser number!
It is about the unspeakable suffering of animals! It is about the senseless barbarism, the wanton cruelty, the horrific abuse of living, breathing, sentient beings! It is about the unacceptable and unconscionable “sacrifice” of animals to appease whatever god is worshipped…in an archaic, anachronistic practice that continues to be condoned and allowed by the governing officials of Nepal.
It is about an uncivilized custom/tradition that belongs in the dustbin of history…along with human sacrifice, child slavery and the subjugation of women, among many other injustices that persist out of ignorance, indifference, corruption and greed!
It is about a blight on the reputation of Nepal that will not go away so long as this aberrant horror persists.
It is long past time for this hideous bloodbath to end!
Citizens of conscience all around the globe say: NO MORE! THE KILLING MUST END ONCE AND FOR ALL!