Kathmandu, 20 September 2017 — “Does it like asking coffee using e-mail!”, said my senior at middle of the trip from Kathmandu to Darchula in 2007 when there was not landline phone or mobile except CDMA phone. I was not in position to imagine the real ground before my field trip to Darchula though I was bit experienced about rural area of Nepal. It was new experience again. I reached Darchula of Nepal through Dharchula of India which was compulsion for every Nepali since there was no appropriate motor way from Baitadi. And we must enter Darchula before 5pm. The extraordinary experience was not the end here. However, it was just started.
During my trip, I found there was no electricity for two days and only one source of the Internet connection was CDMA provided by Nepal Telecom. No electricity, no power backup after a certain hour and no the Internet. Obviously geography structure of Darchula was another challenge of movement for people with limited resources and facilities. Travelling to Kailali was ultimate option of the Internet for my staffs there.
In a way before my trip, I was planning to make centralized online database system. But, my journey to field offices had set new direction to rethink about implementation of Management Information System differently to address disconnected offices away from HQs. I coined decentralized and distributed database system to connect disconnected offices away from HQs.
This is not only case of 2007 but also still many people are disconnected in rural areas. However, people in urban and city areas in Nepal are disconnected with their near and beloveds like – mother, father, brother-sister, spouse and kids – since they are almost busy in new media – like Facebook – to make new social relations in global village. The internet is like a fire whether you use to light the village or to burn the village.
Using the Internet for sustainable development, especially to connect people of rural area with opportunities, and a balance between the Internet and social life are future of humanity. In a way, I am usually disconnected at home to be connected with my kids and family.
(This speech was shared in an event of the Internet Society on Wednesday, 19 September 2017 at Hotel Yellow Pagoda, Kantipath,Kathmandu)