Saturday, January 25, 2014


Bhutan Innovation Research & Development Service (BIRDS) is envisioned to create platform for emerging innovators at all levels in Bhutan.

 It is an ideal platform for students, farmers, professionals and interested people to support innovations. Initially it presented business ideas for emerging entrepreneurs and unemployed youth to help start their own businesses. 

One of the main goal of the BIRDS is to become a “Launch Pad” for entrepreneurs and start-up businesses in Bhutan.

The BIRDS will be the “wind beneath your wings” to help people start, manage, and grow their ideas, research and proposals to own their own business venture. 

The committee of BIRDS share business ideas, business secrets, and help find investors for the start-up business. 

If you already have a business idea, BIRDS will help prepare/fine tune your business plan and help find investors. And where necessary, it will also provide basic incubation/hand-holding services.

Friends, youths, people join the innovation movement. All are welcome—there is no age limit. Be a part of the solution and an agent of change. There are a lot of business opportunities and the BIRDS provides an ideal pathway to a successful business venture.

History of BIRDS
BIRDS is a Public Benefit Organization and the first of its kind in the country formed by some enthusiastic people who really care about the future of our country.The solution to create employment lies not only with the Government but to each individual. And, entrepreneur development and innovation is one answer.

My Say:
Every year thousands of Bhutanese youths graduates from colleges and university. A handful of them get absorb in government jobs, a few of them in the corporate and private sector. And, the rest remains unemployed.

We have never considered agriculture and farming as an entrepreneur activity. In schools and at home, we are always taught to become civil servants and work in the government offices. Moreover, if we tell our parents we want to become a farmer, they will laugh at us because our Bhutanese Society never considered Agriculture and Farming as an alternative to ease the problem of unemployment and as well as solve the issue of food import from our Neighouring country, India.

I have been hearing that the government's plan to make agriculture as an additional subject in schools. To give our youths first hand knowledge on Farming. While i was in High School, our school had a big farm where we used to grow potatoes, maize and spinach. We used to work there every Saturday afternoon. I think the farm is still there. If you have studied in Chukha Higher Secondary School, you will be knowing for sure.

If you have been following the news then probably you might be knowing that our government wants to send us abroad to work, which is a good thing. However, It's an irony to know that the youths of a small country with a population of just around Seven Hundred Thousand have to look for jobs in other countries.      

 But for how long, can we go on like this? Do we intend to send our unemployed youth to work abroad every year??

Friday, January 24, 2014

Gelephu Tshachu

On the 8th day of our Southern Tour, we visited the famous Gelephu Tshachu. We started exactly at 8.30 am from our hotel in Gelephu.

Crowds Gathered Outside the Tshachu
I had never been to a Tshachu (Hot Spring) before in my life and i couldn't resist the opportunity when our intineary was altered again.

I had seen in news and television about the hot spring bath and had a little knowledge on the status of Gelephu Hotspring. And, so when the opportunity awaited, i didnt want to deprive myself to see the hot spring in real.

When we reached the Tshachu, it was the female's turn.

The Tshachu Management has scheduled the timing for male and female. So, that women do not feel uncomfortable when men are around which is a good thing.

And, four of us immediately went inside the Tshachu compound. To my disappointment, i saw a lot of women squeezed in one small pool.

May be it was the peak winter time. So, that was why a lot of people from far and near had come and camped near the Tshachu compound.

can u see the tents there?

We waited for sometime for people to empty some spaces for us. But the pool was so squeezed that me and a friend left it because we didn't have the patience to wait for more.

So, instead we went to where our vehicle was parked and helped them in preparing our lunch.(so u know we cooked and ate where ever it was possible).

Well, i really dont know whether soaking in the hot spring can cure one's disease that what we believe, rite?. Hot Springs have minerals and if we soak in it for a long duration, it can cure us of some particular dieseases.. Moreover, seeing the large crowd i can at-least say that people still have trust in what they belief.

 Seriously, from my point of view, i would like to say, how can a stagnant water where thousands of people with all sorts of disease have bathed in the same pool cure someone.

Have you ever taken a hot spring bath? Please let me know your opinion too.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Visit to Royal Manas National Park

As part of our annual Recreational Outing and Picnic, this time we went to Royal Manas National Park located in the Southern Central Region of the country via the Tsirang - Gelephu Highway.

We were quite a large group (21 of us and some of us were traveling to this region for the first time including me). We boarded two buses with all our supplies and groceries, utensils and camping equipments to last for a week. So, that we could cook, eat and camp where ever it was possible. 

Near Yebilaptsa

Day 1: Gelephu
We started our journey early in the morning on the 8th of Jan. 2014 and reached Gelephu around 6 pm.

We went for shopping in the Gelephu Town as we needed some extra supplies to last for all of us and had an early dinner because the next day we will be heading towards a place called Gomphu.
Our Camp @ Gomphu

Day 2: Gomphu
The road to Gomphu was very narrow and steep. But luckily no vehicles ply on those roads.

We reached Gomphu Eco Lodge & camping site in the evening. It was very cold there.

 The small eco lodge is owned & managed by the Gomphu Community. Since, the rooms could hardly accommodate us, some of us had to sleep in the tents. It was fun and interesting there. They had already made preparations for a bonfire.
Bone Fire @ Gomphu

One of the Eco-Lodge in Gomphu

Day 3: Panbang

 The never ending winding roads were very tiring. However, the scenic beauty of the place awaked us. There is a large and beautiful twin waterfall on the way to Panbang. It was warm there. We stopped there to take pictures.
The Twin Waterfall near Panbang

Actually in our itenary, we were to stop for the night at Panbang Eco Lodge. However, when we reached there it was already occupied by some guest. So, we looked for two other lodges but it was not possible to stay there.
The Panbang Bridge

Bank of the Manas River.

Day 3: Camping on the Bank of the River Manas
So, we camped on the bank of Manas River. It was very windy at night.

I felt as if the wind will blow our tents at night. But nothing as such happened.
RMNP Sign Board

Day 4: RMNP
It was so windy on the morning, that we decided to go straight to the park area.

Finally on the fourth morning of our trip, we crossed the river on the boat to reach the Park area.

Wooden Boat

Wild Buffaloes

Basketball Court In Manas
There is a basketball court, football and volleyball ground. It is so beautiful on the park.

Volley Ball Court in Manas

There is a football Ground behind those trees.

Our Camping Site in Manas

The scenery are enchanting.

our camp

On the first day @ RMNP some of us   rode on the tamed elephants. There were only three elephants.
Elephant Ride

Hiking towards a place called Special Thang
Day 5: @ RMNP
On our second morning at the park, some of us went for Bird Watching. I spotted a Collared Owlet. There are plenty of Rufous Hornbill and Parakeets.

We went hiking to a place called Special Thang after breakfast. 

 There were lots of Indian Gooseberry trees.

Unfortunately, we weren't lucky enough to spot any animals. On our way back and forth we saw some footprints of tigers and leopards.

It is estimated that there are only 35 tigers in the Manas Region.
 The Indian side of the Manas is a World Heritage Site for conserving tigers.

footprints of a Tiger
We spotted a barking deer running from one side of the dry river to the other end.

The name of the dry river is Geylongkhola.

After hiking for nearly two hours, we reached the Watch Tower.

However, there was nothing to see. May be the wild animals were scared by our large group.

On our way back, we spoted several Golden Langurs (endangered species) clinging from one branch to another.

And, saw some jungle fowl.

When we reached our camp site, i were so tired that i directly went to sleep.
Wooden Boat

  Day 6: RMNP

On our third day @ RMNP, we went for river rafting..

Day 7: Back to Gelephu
On our 7th day, we returned back to Gelephu through the Indian route.

Day 8: Gelephu Tshachu

Stupa near the Tshachhu


A Brief Introduction of Royal Manas National Park:


This park has only recently been opened to the public and offers  thousands of animal and plant species, many of which are globally endangered, it is not only the most diverse protected area in the Kingdom but also noted as one of the world’s biologically outstanding parks.

Lying in south central Bhutan, Manas is connected at the southern border with India’s Manas Tiger Reserve, a World Heritage Site. To the north it borders the Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park. Royal Manas was designated a wildlife sanctuary in 1966 making it Bhutan’s oldest protected area. The area was upgraded to a National Park in 1993.

There are wide climate variations in Royal Manas. The May-September monsoons bring up to 5,000mm of rain. Rainfall is negligible in winter and the climate is extremely pleasant from November till March.
Manas is also extremely rich in wildlife species, including the highly endangered Royal Bengal tiger, Asian elephant, greater one-horned rhinoceros, clouded leopard, Himalayan black bear, gangetic dolphin and pangolin. Found virtually nowhere else in the world is the especially rare golden langur, a primate of extraordinary grace and beauty with its long, silky blond fur.

More than 365 species of birds have been officially recorded in Royal Manas National Park with an additional 200 believed to be in residence. Species found here include the globally threatened rufous-necked hornbill, Pallas fishing eagle, great white-bellied heron, spotted wren-babbler, blue-headed rock thrush and emerald cuckoo. Many of the park’s more than 900 types of plants have commercial, medicinal, traditional and religious significance.

WWF and Bhutan’s Nature Conservation Division jointly developed a five-year conservation management plan which includes training and equipping park staff, improving park infrastructure, and supporting biological and socio-economic surveys and park monitoring programs. (Source TCB Website).