Two centuries since the establishment of diplomatic relationship has a great importance in the history of any nation. Nepal's relations with United Kingdom cannot be an exception. As Nepal and United Kingdom have been celebrating the year 2016 as the Bicentenary Year of establishment of their relations, organizations like Nepal Britain Society, working at the people-to-people level, are working to make the occasion special.
Under the leadership of President Pratima Pande, Nepal Britain Society has been bringing the bicentenary celebrations to the people-to-people level through events, one of which was the Bicentenary Musical Evening.
Following the visit of British Prince Harry to Nepal, the bicentenary program picked up a new momentum. After hosting a couple of programs like Everest Marathon, Nepal Britain Society hosted two lecture programs and supported Everest Marathon in addition to the Musical Evening.
With the music of Sursudha and Guitar of Anil Shahi, the hall of Yak and Yeti Hotel, was full of thrill and enthusiastic participation for almost three hours. The Bicentenary Musical Evening was also organized to celebrate the 90th birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, shows how music was bringing the two countries closer.
Sponsored by Sulabh Agrawal from Jagadamba Overseas Pvt.Ltd, the musical program was a thrilling performance. British Ambassador to Nepal and Trustee and Senior Vice president of Nepal Britain Society Richard Morris said that this kind of program will help to further strengthen the bilateral relations between the two countries.
Welcoming the guests, president of Nepal Britain Society Pratima Pande, MBE, said, "I am very happy to welcome you all to celebrate the bicentenary of Nepal Britain Relationship by organizing this event in the form of songs, dance, classical and fusion music. This evening’s celebration is to bring all the members and the people of the two countries together by uniting ourselves with music. The musicians have prepared an excellent program.”
Along with organizing the musical concert, Nepal Britain Society held many other programs. “During the year, we had a lecture by Madhukar S.Rana on the topic, should Nepal be in the Commonwealth? and this month we had a lecture on the Anglo Nepal War by Retired General Prem Singh Basnyat. The Tenzing Hillary Marathon took place on May 29, 2016 to celebrate the bicentenary. British Ambassador Richard Morris ran a part of the marathon 8 KM to the finish line which was indeed a very hard feat due to the high altitude. As a chief guest, Ambassador Morris gave away the prizes. Nepal Britain Society donated Rs.50,000.00 cash prize for the ladies category which was won by a local lady runner from Solukhumbu,” said president Pande.
The Bicentenary Musical Program was the biggest program organized in Nepal at the people’s level. “The program would not have been possible without our wonderful musicians Sur Sudha and Anil Shahi and friends, other artists and Sanjeev Pandey. Former Nepalese ambassador to United Kingdom Dr. Singh Bahadur Basnyat was one of the co-coordinators of the program,” said president Pande.
Former ambassador Dr. Basnyat, who performed violin at the program, said music can be used to promote friendship at the people’s level. “During my tenure as an ambassador in United Kingdom, I had the privilege to organize various Nepalese musical programs."
Trustee of Nepal Britain Society Sagar SJB Rana highlighted the bicentenary exhibition, which is scheduled for November 18, 2016 at Nepal Art Council.
“As a part of bicentenary celebration, we are organizing a photo exhibition with about 150 images depicting the evolution of Nepal-Britain relations and this will form the main body and attraction of exhibition,” said Rana. “The inspirational leadership of Pratima Pande to foster Nepal-Britain friendship has been recognized in many ways and I hope this project can add another dimension to it.”
Nepal Britain Society’s contribution to strengthening the Nepal-Britain Society continues as the society welcomed three former New Castle University students who cycled all the way from Shanghai to Kathmandu since the last few months via Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, Myanmar, India and Nepal. According to Nepal Britain Society, these three young men have raised nearly 40,000.00 pounds by cycling for charity which will go to build home for the earthquake victims.