Stories: Nepal

  • “If You Have Money, You Can Think Whatever You Want”

    People in Nepal’s Thulopakhar village shudder to hear of a girl going to work abroad. Under their voices, neighbors mutter about sex work, abuse, impropriety. In this village, nestled beneath the Himalayas, some 70 kilometers from the capital city of Kathmandu, boys leave because they have no choice but to earn money for their families; girls need to stay...

  • Meet Our Newest Fellows

    The International Reporting Project is awarding fellowships to report on different topics around the world. The following fellowships were awarded in late 2017 and early 2018.                           Religion Issues We congratulate the following journalists who were awarded fellowships in late 2017 and early 2018 to cover religion issues: Jessica Aguirre is...

  • The child brides of Nepal: why education alone is not enough to stop underage marriages

    Inside the house of her husband’s parents, Apsara Devi Sah sits on a mat in a small, windowless storage room with a mud floor. Three days after her wedding she is still dressed in bridal finery – an ornately embroidered yellow veil and dress dipped in red, elaborate mehndi snaking down her arms and legs. Dozens of green,...

  • In Nepal’s Towns Without Men, Women Take on Newfound Responsibility

    KATHMANDU, NEPAL – Two-and-a-half-year-old Ansuman Thatal wakes up from his nap with a start. He scans the room, and before anyone can comfort him, begins bawling: “Baba, baba, baba.” By this point, the baba, or daddy, in question – Ashok Thatal – has been away for a week. For his wife, Shova, and 7-year-old daughter, such a state...

  • The Omnipresence of Dust in Kathmandu

    It's the middle of winter, and the wards of Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital in downtown Kathmandu, Nepal, are full of people who can't breathe. On the third-floor pediatrics ward, Basanta K.C. balances his baby daughter, Bursa, in his right arm and deftly threads a narrow plastic tube into her nostrils. As she struggles for air, her...

  • A world without men? When men go abroad to work, women in Nepal take the lead at home.

    Night has fallen inky black and cold over Amar Basti village, but Kalpana Thapa and her neighbors are loath to drift off to bed. They punch at their phones, pull shawls tighter and coo at the children careening around. A light bulb, powered by a shared electricity line, illuminates the concrete platform that serves as Thapa’s dining room. ...

  • Are Qatar’s reform efforts falling short?

    When Ranjit Kumar Sah finished his schooling in Nepal, Qatar was the natural next step. Though his village is so remote it takes half-an-hour to reach a paved road, it’s located in an area that has become one of the epicentres of Nepal’s labour migration boom. Between 2009 and 2015, migration from Dhanusha District more than doubled, and...

  • Preying on disaster: How human trafficking has spiked in quake-shattered Nepal

    The year following two earthquakes that devastated Nepal saw a spike in desperate people falling into the clutches of human traffickers. Two years later, with the country’s infrastructure and economy still in ruins, NGOs say human trafficking is still on the rise. Nepal has long been a source of economic migrants, and the money they’ve sent...

  • ‘She’s like my wife, you know how it is’

    Sushant, 18, was accompanying two girls from his college to a nearby market to shop for make-up supplies when he was stopped and questioned by the Nepal police. “These checks are a complete nuisance,” said the young man. “It’s harassment!” His other young friends laughed and waved as they strolled across the border from Nepal...

  • Nepali Tiger Poachers Fear University of Montana Mapmakers

    On the far side of the world, rangers trying to protect tigers in Nepal depend on maps made in Missoula. None of Kevin McManigal’s cartography students at the University of Montana have been to the Parsa Wildlife Preserve. But they’ve spent the past six months building the most detailed topographic record the 155,000-acre tiger habitat has...