Sandwiched between the two of world’s greatest giants India and China, Nepal is a landlocked country located in the South-East region of Asia. Nepal is stretched from 53 meters above sea level to the world’s tallest mountain Mount Everest at 8848 meters. Following are few of most important facts about Nepal.
Area: 1,47,181 sq.km.
National Language: Nepali.
National Currency: Rupees/Rupaiya.
National Animal: Cow.
National Bird: Lophophorus/Danfe.
National Flower: Rhododendron/laligurans.
Population: 30 million (approx).
After a decade long political turmoil, Nepal, also known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal has recently found its tortoise paced stability, still accompanied by frequent outbursts of more than 100 small political parties. The Shah kings that ruled the country for the better part of the history are now the pray-tell of the past. The constitutional assembly has been constituted to provide the people with the constitution and having failed to do so the expiration of the CA has been extended for several times now.
Nepal was traditionally known as a Hindu country but recently it has been declared a secular state, however having said that, Hinduism is followed by the majority of people with more than 80%, Buddhism trailing on approximately 10% behind that, Islam approximately on 4% and Kiranti, an indigenous religion after that approximately 4% and others including Christianity. Nepal is an incredible example of religious tolerance where a huge diversity of people striving various religious values live in peace and harmony with utmost respect and honor for the other religions.
Flora and Fauna:
With an outstanding climatic diversity of tropical to arctic, Nepal is the home to a wide range of species of both flora and fauna, including Kadhe Bhyakur, also known as the Spinny Blabber, one horned rhino, 245 species of plants and herbs that are indigenous to Nepal and Nepal alone, of 6000 species found in the country making it a paradise not only for tourists and explorers but also for researchers and scientists. Nepal is also known for its habitat of the rare and glorifying Bengal Tiger. Other than that, Nepal is also very rich in its possession of medicinal herds holding a major scientific importance. One of the most popular herbs is the Yarshagumba.
Nepal holds one of worlds rarest riches of indigenous diversity as more than 100 different tribes share the country in religious and cultural harmony and homage, each tribe with a cultural heirloom unique in practice and importance to the other. However majority of the country being Hindus, Dashain and Tihar mark as the biggest festival. However, Lhosar in Sherpa, Gurung and Tamang communities are also happily celebrated by the Hindus in the country. Chhath typical to the Terai communities is also celebrated by the people in the Hilly Region. Holi, a traditionally Hindu festival is a major national festival irrespective of Religion, cast, creed and geographic region. English New Year and Christmas is also celebrated by majority of urban population despite having a calendar of their own. So, it can be easily derived that Nepal is the world's only country where people are brought close by means of festivals irrespective of their diversity in culture, tradition, language and most important of all religion.
Within a small vicinity as Nepal’s, there are 123 languages spoken in the country falling mostly in the Indo-Aryan and Sino-Tibetan language Families. Nepali is the official and national language of the country spoken almost everywhere and by everyone. Bhojpuri is the second most spoken language native to the Terai territories of the country. Newari is also spoken among the Newar communities and are scattered all over the country covering valleys and major business transits including Kathmandu Valley which is inhabited by a majority of Newars.
Nepal is an agricultural country owing much of its GDP contributed by agricultural products like cereals, vegetable ghee, honey. Other than agricultural exports Nepal is an exporter of handicrafts, carpet and medicinal herbs. Major reliance on imports are on India and China which are mostly industrial goods, mechanical and engineering goods creating a large deficit on imports and exports.Tourism is one of the main industries that has a huge prospect of flourishing. Nepal has a PCI of 404 USD and ranked 145 in the HDI.
Culture and caste:
There are 59 castes and 125 sub castes which makes Nepal a garden of castes and sub castes like King Prithvi Narayan Shah said. Earlier there were 4 castes Brahmin, Chhetri, Vaishya and Shudhra but after the abolition of Caste system these kinds of classification and treatment based on caste system has been deemed illegal by the government, however, it fails to implement in practical life and is centralised mostly in the urbanised areas.
Some of the ethnic tribes that are indigenous to Nepal and wanderers are Chepangs, Kusundas and Lepchas who are still in their nomadic lives. The brahmin, Chhetris and Newars of the Aryan race have a majority in most parts of the country while Kirant with a religion of their own, Rai and Limbus also known as Limbuwans falling in the Mongoloid race are also found abundantly. Sherpas residing mostly in the Solukhumbu district of Nepal are the mountain dwellers and live on the lap of the Great Mount Everest. Magars on the other hand live in east and west of Nepal differing however in language and in cultural practice.
This diversity of races and caste have few mutually celebrated festivals among all of them and each of them also have their own unique festivals native only to them. Thus makes them unique and mysterious in their own way. The most glorifying fact is that none of these tribe have hatred or remorse against each other and respect and honour passionately about each other’s culture, cultural practices, norms and values, respect the differences amongst them and live in a mutual harmony found nowhere else around the world.