Some people cycle long distances for fundraising, others for adventure, but Anish Dhakal, Dilip Chhetri and Nirmal Baral are travelling around the world to spread a message of environmental protection and world peace.
The three Nepali cyclists set off from Kathmandu on Dec. 30 last year and reached Taiwan on Tuesday by plane from Malaysia.
Along the way, they try to spread their message in any way possible — by speaking to media, participating in cycling events, presenting at schools or participating in a cleanup event in Laos.
With banners and flags on their bikes, they are frequently stopped by passersby, which for them, is another chance to spread the word.
Dhakal said he acknowledges that they do not think they can change the world, but said they believe that every bit counts.
In Taiwan, where they are to stay for up to a week, the cyclists will likely forgo some of the more scenic areas so that they can increase their chances of meeting people, Dhakal said.
“We have to visit more cities so people can catch us,” he said. “We can’t do anything, but if people can only see us and understand what we’re doing, I think that’s enough.”
A 22-year-old environmental activist, Dhakal said he was inspired to make the journey after the 2015 Nepal Earthquake, which caused a lot of destruction in the nation. With no sponsors, Dhakal recruited two friends, both social workers, to join his cause.
He has been asked how he could just leave everything behind for five years, Dhakal said, adding that he wants to “achieve something” and believes that it is time to do something for nature after only taking from it for so long.
“Everyone is busy and they don’t want to stop what they’re doing,” he says. “Nowadays, there’s only economic development. There’s no social development.”
The trip is entirely self-funded, but the team has received help from Nepalese expatriates, including the Nepal Taiwan Association, which helped them find accommodation in Taipei, Dhakal said, adding that if it were not for the association, they would be camping.
They chose to cycle because it is both healthy and eco-friendly, and simultaneously a means to promote eco-friendly practices, Dhakal added.
“If someone like us can cycle from Nepal to another country, why can’t someone in one particular city travel a small distance by bicycle and reduce their carbon footprint?” Dhakal asked.
The trio is looking for opportunities to get involved in Taiwan, and what they find will determine how long they will stay until they depart for their next destination — either South Korea or Japan, he said.
Taiwan might be China’s next target after it has “walled off” Hong Kong from the rest of the world with its new national security legislation, Academia Sinica Institute of Sociology fellow Wu Jieh-min (吳介民) said on Thursday. At a seminar organized by the Economic Democracy Union, the Taiwan Association for Human Rights, the Hong Kong Outlanders and the Judicial Reform Foundation, Wu said that the legislation is simultaneously a fig leaf concealing Beijing’s autocratic rule in Hong Kong and a figurative “Berlin Wall,” denying democratic countries access to Hong Kong. Wu said it is evident that Taiwan would be China’s next target. The
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb
The National Taiwan Museum’s Railway Department Park in Taipei is to open to the public today. The park in Datong District (大同) near the North Gate (北門, Beimen) is one of the museum’s four branches. During the Japanese colonial era, the site housed the railway department of the Office of the Governor-General of Taiwan’s Bureau of Transportation. After World War II, it served as the headquarters for the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) for several decades. In 2007, it was listed as a national monument under the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法). At an opening ceremony yesterday, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung
CHALLENGER DEEP: Lin Ying-Tsong was invited by Caladan Oceanic founder Victor Vescovo to join him on a 10-hour long trip in the company’s submersible Taiwanese-American Lin Ying-Tsong (林穎聰) last month became the first person from Asia and the 12th in human history to dive into the deepest part on Earth, the Challenger Deep in the Mariana Trench. Lin, 45, an expert in deep sea acoustics with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in Massachusetts, joined US adventurer and Caladan Oceanic founder Victor Vescovo, 54, on June 22 in a descent to the central pool of the Challenger Deep, the deepest point of the trench, which lies at a depth of more than 10,900m. The pair made the descent in a submersible named Limiting Factor, a US$37