I read “Take the Lead” by Anil Chitrakar about two months back. Finally, now I’ve decided to review the book briefly and mention the things I like and things I disliked.
Undoubtedly, Anil Chitrakar is a prolific man with vast experience and knowledge. Reviewing or criticizing work of such person by a young bud like me is out of league. But still I would like to pour some word about his book.
If you are optimistic person who believe in “Nepal mai garna sakincha”, then this book will fuel you enthusiasm. If you are other part who are pessimistic “Nepal ma kehi hunna”, then this book might change your thought, “might”.
I’m in between pessimistic and optimistic crowd, Nepal has possibilities; we can achieve a golden future mentioned in book only if those possibilities are nurtured, existing problem are realized and steps are taken to solve them. The book “Take The Lead” contains lots of essays that shed light on those possibilities and generally tires to fill its reader mind with ray of hope and optimism.
Generally author has tired to spread that “ray of hope” through story telling and his findings during his career. After going through the book I realized the book only talk about the positive side and somewhat ignores the negative factors that affect’s Nepal’s growth or development.
While I agree on some positive aspect discussed in a book, I couldn’t accept all the hypothesis mentioned in the book. After reading the book, I felt the book is overshadowed by author’s ”overly-optimistic” analysis and “confirmation bias” which ignores the factor that doesn’t agrees with his hypothesis. Some points I would like to critique are explained below.
Trumpet of tourism in Nepal
Without a doubt Nepal is naturally beautiful and rich in culture and heritage. But Nepal is not the only one or flag bearer in this category; there are other countries that has monuments built in B.C era and have striking beauty as well. Nepal lacks good transportation facility & infrastructure. Tribhuvan Airport is ranked as one of the worst airport in the world and it is the only international airport in the country. Even if tourism industry suddenly starts to we cannot accommodate all the tourists efficiently and effectively; lack of infrastructures is to blame.
Country between two big economy
Author has mentioned that Nepal is between two economic giant China & India, thus Nepal can take advantage of this two big market. But in reality, Nepal is heavily dependent on these country. Almost everything is imported from either India or China. Nepali products haven’t been able to compete with products imported from these countries; except WaiWai. We can improve our economy by exporting “things” to these countries, that “things” are not mentioned in a book.
The book criticize about the foreign aid Nepal is receiving. I agree, foreign aid haven’t been able to change Nepal as expected. Nepal would have been better place if those aid were to be properly utilized. The book mentions how Nepal is receiving aid for maintaining heritage from US even though inception of US as a country is newer that of Nepal. This generalization ignores the fact the US was colonized by Europeans and UK where as Nepal came to current form only after unification by Prithivi Narayan Shah i.e. about 260 years ago.
There are other other hasty generalization in the book; I couldn’t remind myself all those. Plus, long post are boring. So I would like to conclude here. Have anything to say ? mention in the comment.