The devastation caused by the recent earthquake in Nepal is still fresh in our memory. More than 8,800 people are dead and thousands have been injured. Many countries including India have sent in their help into this impoverished nation, but the massive reconstruction needed is still a daunting task. However, the behavior of Indian media and our government has been the most shocking. Operation Maitri, the rescue effort by our National Disaster Response Force, which was hyped up the Indian media, has left a bitter taste in Nepal.

After the first week of rescue efforts, the message trending on Nepal’s social media was “#GoHomeIndianMedia”. As quoted by BBC, the Indian media’s “shrillness, jingoism, exaggerations, and sometimes mistakes in coverage” has disgusted the host community. Our media’s main story was not the suffering of the Nepali people, but the generosity of the Indian government!

Whenever we extend a helping hand to someone, we are not supposed to thump our chest and claim credit. Our benefactors have to acknowledge our help and they hold the right to give credit. Let’s not be so shameful to spread self-congratulatory messages, while other countries have also done a great job in Nepal.

One look at the children of Nepal shows the dire state of affairs in that poor country. Years of civil war and government apathy have resulted in pathetic conditions for the young generation. During our visit in 2007, when Nepal became a people’s republic we were touched by the kind hearted nature of the people and hardworking child labourers. On the World Day Against Child Labour, we need to look at ways to help these poor souls. I feel these pictures speak more powerful than my words –

Children of Nepal

Early morning, Jack went down the hill to fetch pail of water

Children of Nepal

The innocent smiles of these children are truly endearing

Nepal Children 3

The innocent smiles of these children are truly endearing

Nepal Children 4

Never seen more hardworking child labourers than these!

Children of Nepal

Poor children play around rich cultural heritage sites

Children of Nepal

Street smarts roam the streets of Kathmandu carrying a pet on shoulders

Children of Nepal

Pride possession carried away zealously

Children of Nepal

Seeking blessings at the Manakamana Mandir

Children of Nepal

Dirty slippers become a toy to chew!

Children of Nepal

Children are no doubt a photographer’s delight

Children of Nepal

No age limit for daredevilry!

Children of Nepal

Early morning tuitions – a rare sight in rural areas

Children of Nepal

The joyous exuberance of children despite their poverty is touching

Children of Nepal

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Images
Levine Lawrence
Nagaraj D.H

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Levine Lawrence
Stuck inside an air-conditioned cubicle... i yearn to ride into the countryside... under the open blue skies, where farmers toil in the field, smell mitti ki khushboo, fill more greenery into the picture... travel across the world, meet more people, bring smile on faces... and finally, work for world peace. Just like those Miss World statements! I am a veteran media professional with 12 years of diverse experience in business media and research in India. Apart from my full time job as a researcher, I have been an avid travel photo-journalist, who has covered the art & cultural aspects of South India. Further, I am actively involved in the voluntary organisations working on energy efficiency, organic farming and environmental issues.