KARNALI UTSAV: Divine Connection with the Soul of Karnali

by Mar 8, 2021

Karnali Utsav, the festival of multiple dimension of Karnali province specially the stories of the Karnali is approaching to us. From 10-13 of March, 2021 (26-29 Falgun 2077) the festival is going to be celebrated in the lap of Bulbule Park, the heart of Karnali province and well known landmark situated at Birendranagar, Surkhet.

‘Karnali Utsav’ is a festival where several great minds explore and talk about different aspect of Karnali. Stories of the Karnali will be exposed in several sessions in these four days of the festival. Debate on the several issues is going to be organized in a single stage including but not limited to culture, lifestyle, economy, history, education, literature, civilization, indigenous knowledge and skills, natural resources, and etc of the Karnali.

Karnali Utsav is organized by Hriti Foundation and Asst. Prof. Kamal Lamsal is in the role of Coordinator where more than 24 self motivated volunteers devoted and continuously works together to make the event successful.

In the second edition of the Utsav, several partners including Province Government, Local Government, Nepal Academy and several other stakeholders join hands together for the collaboration.

How to Participate?

Anyone interested can join and participate the festival on mentioned date/time and location. There is no any entry fee or any sort of other charges for participation. It’s completely free!!

You can navigate through the Google map for the location information. If you are outside the Surkhet valley and wish to participate the festival, you may travel by air or by road to surkhet. There is one direct flight daily from Kathmandu to Surkhet (approx. 1 hour flight time) or you can take flight of Nepalgunj and then travel by vehicle to surkhet which will take additional 2.5 hour by road from Nepalgunj to Surkhet.

Session Details

The festival will start on 10th of March with the cycle rally and inauguration ceremony. Remaining three days are categorized in three different themes named, Hammo Mannawi (हाम्मो मान्नवी), Surke Thaili (सुर्के थैली), Kaitha Neta, Kaitho Netritwo (कैथा नेता, कैथो नेतृत्व). Inside these three themes, different 14 sessions will be enclosed and presented in the festival.

In this second edition of the Karnali Utsav, something new is coming up in between the several sessions. The hidden heroes (paikalo) of Karnali will be presented with their stories (paikalaka katha) in between the sessions.



Similar to the first edition, the second edition of the Karnali Utsav is going to start with the ‘cycle rally’ in the Birendranagar city of Surkhet. Cyclist from the home town and from Nepaljung are going to participate the rally. Several cycling clubs and organizations are also collaborating for the rally and the rally will begin at 7 o’clock in the morning.

Inauguration of the Karnali Utsav will begin with Magal singing and traditional music (dhun) at 02:00 PM. Chief Minister of Karnali Province Mahendra Bahadur Shahi will be the Chief Guest of the inauguration ceremony. Deputy Mayor of Bheriganga Municipality Renu Acharya Dhakal will deliver welcome speech in the ceremony. And, Minister of Ministry of Industry Tourism Forest and Environment Nanda Singh Budha will deliver speech on ‘Why to Visit Karnali?’

After the key note speech, Professor Jagat Prasad Upadhyaya, a Member Secretary of Nepal Academy will deliver special speech on the contribution of Yogi Narharinath to identify and exposing the magnificent and splendours history of the Karnali.

On the inauguration day, Dr. Sarwaraj Khadka, Vice-Chairperson of Planning Commission of Karnali Province, Mayor of Birendranagar Municipality Dev Kumar Subedi, Resham Bahadur Bista from Hriti Foundation and Prakash Paudel will also deliver speech in different thematic topic and issue.

In the inauguration session a photo book Karnali People and Places by Gita Bhattarai and Samrat Katuwal will be released and former Vice-Chancellor of Mid-Western University Prof. Dr. Padam Lal Devkota will review and comment on the photo book. Inauguration day will be decorated with typical Karnali regions’ cultural dance and shows.


Hammo Mannawi (हाम्मो मान्नवी)

Second day of the Karnali Utsav will be based on the theme of Hammo Mannawi (हाम्मो मान्नवी) meaning our universe, our surrounding including art, culture, tradition, society, literature, lifestyle and everything whatever we are connected with.

Based on the theme, there are several sessions on the second day of the festival which includes Kahari Sukala Hola, Kaile Jala Kaith (कहरी शुकाला होला, कैले जाला कैठ ?), Hat Janya, Bhot Janya (हाट जान्या, भोट जान्या), Aamnai Katha, Aamnai Banki (आम्नै कथा, आम्नै बान्की), Bado, Thado Ra Otalo (बाडो, थाडो र ओटालो), Chau Ra Bhau (छाउ र भाउ), and Gajal Sandhya (गजल संध्या) will be the major sessions and beside, several other short session will be there including cultural dance and stories.

Session 1: Chhau Ra Bhau

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 AM

Having the several beautiful and incredible aspect, Karnali have some terrible experience and tradition as well. Chhau meaning that the menstruation, the natural phenomenon for woman, but due to some sort of conservative thinking and tradition woman faces problem during their period commonly known as Chhaupadi Pratha. And, bhau means children. Malnutrition and child death rate is another major issue of the overall Karnali region. One survey of government of Nepal shows the highest child death rate among other province.

Writer and social activist Radha Paudel, politician and activist Binda Pandey, Child Specialist Nabaraj KC will discuss on these issues as a panelist and Journalist Kamala Panthi will moderate the session.

SESSION 2: Bado, Thado Ra Otalo

Time: 11:10 – 12:10 PM

Incredible social tolerance and cooperation could be observed in the society of Karnali. Here, the word bado means rural hamlet or village, thado means roof of the house and otalo means yard. Meaning that, the roof of one house is joint with roof of another house and a series of houses established. This also impacts the social value, tolerance and cooperation.

Chhakka Bahadur Lama, Member of House of Representative, Writer Govinda Nepali and Sociologist Tikaram Gautam will share their perspective and value of bado thado ra otalo in the session and Journalist Deepa Dahal will facilitate the session.

Update: In the updated panel list Member of Karnali Planning Commission Dipendra Rokaya will be there in stead of Chhakka Bahadur Lama, Member of House of Representative.

SESSION 3: Aamnai Katha, Aamnai Banki

Time: 12:20 – 01:30 PM

Karnali Province is rich in terms of literature, art and culture. Nepali language and civilization originated in the Sinja valley of Jumla. Different location and community have their own stories and tradition. Having these unique How the Karnali express it’s story to others, how it represent itself? Interaction on this regard will be there in this session.

Literary Writer Buddhi Sagar, Theater Artist Hira Bijuli Nepali, Deuda Singer Netra Raj Shahi and Writer Sarala Gautam will be panelist and Media Person/Singer Bhupendra Khadka will facilitate the session.

SESSION 4: Kahari Sukala Hola, Kaile Jala Kaith

Time: 01:45 – 03:00 PM

In the history of Karnali, it suffers from several epidemic, disease and pandemics. Child death rate is comparatively high. Health facilities are poor even people of the remote Karnali should struggle for Sitamol. When these all the trouble will be gone? How the Karnali could be a healthy? These hard and painful issues will be churned in this session.

Former Health Minister, Gagan Thapa, Dr. Suresh Tiwari, Dr. Anup Subedi and Dr. Durga Thapa will be the panelist of the session and Madhav Chaulagain, Writer will facilitate the session.

Session 5: Hat Janya, Bhot Janya

Time: 03:15 – 04:30 PM

People of the Karnali used to travel long by foot for the basic goods like salt, oil and etc specially to the Bhot, Tibet. Still people of Karnali struggle for employment and transportation.

Speaker of Province Assembly Raj Bahadur Shahi, Social Worker Dhanram Budhathoki, and Anthropologist Janak Rai will share insight on this issue and experience and Journalist Nagendra Upadhyaya will facilitate the session.

Gajal Sandhya

Time: 04:30 – 06:00 PM

After the several sessions of Hammo Mannawi, the evening time of second day of Karnali Utsav will be flourished with Gajals (form of amatory poem or ode, originating in Arabic poetry) of several 25 Ghazalkar and the session will be facilitate by popular media person Achyut Ghimire ‘Bulbul’.


Surke Thaili (सुर्के थैली)

Third day of the Karnali Utsav will be based on the theme of Surke Thaili (सुर्के थैली), a symbolic representation of economy, money and dreams. Based on the theme, there are different sessions on the third day of the festival which includes Karnali Ghumauto Padyo (कर्णाली घुमाउटो पड्यो), Padhnu Paddo Cha (पढ्नु पड्डो छ), Praangaarik Prayas (प्रांगारिक प्रयास), Puisa Ka Kuda, Thaili Dekhi Bank Samma (पुईंसाका कुडा, थैलीदेखि बैंकसम्म), Purwadhar Wikas: Sambirdh Karnaliko Purwadhar (पूर्वाधार विकास: समृद्ध कर्णालीको पूर्वाधार), Kabita Sanjh (कविता साँझ) will be the major sessions and beside, several other short sessions will be there including cultural dance and stories.

SESSion 6: Karnali Ghumauto Padyo

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 AM

As the Karnali river originate at Tibetan Plateau near Lake Manasarovar and flow with so many turning, left and right and then reach and passes through Karnali region, all the services, development, planing, administration and everything reach in the similar pattern after so many turnings and processes.

Planning Expert Dinesh Chandra Devkota, Vice-Chairperson of National Planning Commission, Prof. Dr. Puspa Kandel, and Member of Planning Commission Karnali Province Yogendra Shahi will discuss and share idea on this issue in the session and Social Development Activist Dr. Renu Adhikari will facilitate the session.

SESSION 7: Padhnu Paddo Cha

Time: 11:10 – 12:10 PM

In this session discussion and debate will be conducted regarding importance of education and Literate, Educated and Academic Karnali. Politician Milan Pandey, Deputy Mayor of Birendranagar Municipality Mohan Maya Dhakal, Academic Activist Shanta Dahal will be the panelist and Journalist Surya Mani Gautam will facilitate the session.

SESSION 8: Prangarik Prayas

Time: 12:20 – 01:30 PM

In the last few years Karnali is trying (prayas) to be a organic (prangarik) production hub and also promoting organic vegetable and other agriculture productions.

Secretary of Land Management Agriculture and Cooperative Ministry, Karnali Province Rajendra P. Mishra, Secretary of Ministry of Industry, Tourism, Forest and Environment, Karnali Province Mohan Dev Joshi, Chairperson of Kumakh Rural-Municipality Dilmaya Budha Magar, and Food Right Activist Suresh Kumar Gautam will share province and local government initiatives vision and entrepreneurs’ experience regarding organic production. Journalist Ganesh Kanchan Bharati will facilitate the session.

Session 9: Puisaka Kuda, Thaili Dekhi Bank Samma

Time: 01:40 – 02:50 PM

Financial and economic analysis will be there in this session relating to the present scenario of Karnali. The CEO of Rastriya Banijya Bank Kiran Kumar Shrestha, Banker Manoj Gyawali, CEO of Prabhu Bank Limited, Ashok Sherchan, Deputy CEO of Nabil Bank Limited Manoj Gyawali and Chairperson of Forward Micro Finance Sunsari, Bhagawati Chaudhari will discuss and share thought on this issue. The session will be facilitated by TV host Tikaram Yatri.

Session 10: Purwadhar Wikas: Sambirdh Karnaliko Purwadhar

Time: 03:00 – 04:15 PM

Karnali is geographically remote in nature and infrastructure development is one of the major challenge so far. Still some of the district like Dolpa, Humla etc are not well connected and access is difficult. Joint Secretary Ghanshyam Upadhyaya, Infrastructure Development Expert Dr. Shankar Prasad Sharma, Joint Secretary Dhaniram Sharma will discuss on this issue and recommendation. Host of this session is yet to decide.

Kabita Sanjh

Time: 04:30 – 06:00 PM

After the discussion and sharing sessions, in the evening poem of famous Nepalese poet Nabaraj Parajuli will be flourished and several other poets will also read poem in the concert.


Kaitha Neta, Kaitho Netritwo (कैथा नेता, कैथो नेतृत्व)

Forth or final day of the Karnali Utsav will be based on the theme of Kaitha Neta, Kaitho Netritwo (कैथा नेता, कैथो नेतृत्व), representing the leadership and leaders of Karnali province who are basically the guardian of the people here. Based on the theme, there are different sessions on the third day of the festival which includes Mukhya Manth, Mul Kuda (मुख्य मान्ठा, मुल कुडा), Lokatantra Ko Laya (लोकतन्त्रको लय), Paschim Ma Prashasak, Paschim Ka Prashasak (पश्चिममा प्रशासक, पश्चिमका प्रशासक), Sarakari Gairh Sarakari (सरकारी, गैह्र-सरकारी) will be the major sessions and beside, several other short sessions will be there including cultural dance, stories and the closing session.

SESSION 11: Paschim Ma Prashasak, Paschim Ka Prashasak

Time: 10:00 – 11:00 AM

Generally and simply, government officials do not choose the Karnali province to serve or work in several executive position due to different reasons. But several higher level government officials have worked here and working now as well. What is the root cause of this and how the administrative or executive officer of this region should be what are the challenges and positive side? Such different dimension of administrative sector of Karnali region at different level will be explored in this session.

Former Secretary Krishna Raj BC, Former Principal Secretary of Karnali Province Kewal P. Bhandari, Former CDO of Jumla Durga Banjade, and Chief Administrative Officer of Birendranagar Municipality Tikaram Dhakal will be the panelist and Media Person, Rupesh Shrestha will facilitate the session.

SESSION 12: Sarakari Gairh Sarakari

Time: 11:20 – 12:30 PM

It is commonly heard and blamed that, several persons, Non-Government Organization (NGO) and International NGO came to Karnali to make change but they changed/developed themself and Karnali does not changed, remains as it is. Still, there are numbers of such organization and persons working but what is the reality and where it is going how it is going and several such other issues including positive and negative impact will be discussed in this session.

Social Development Minister of Karnali Province Dala Rawal, Chief Attorney of Province No. 2 Dipendra Jha, Vice-Chairperson of NGO Federation Sumitra Sharma, and Director of Sambirdhi Foundation Dipendra Chaulagai will discuss in the session and Media Person Prakash Lamichhane will facilitate the session.

SESSION 13: Lokatantra Ko Laya

Time: 12:45 – 01:45

After the struggle and movement of several year, Lokatantra, means people’s rule has been established in Nepal. In the session the the expectation, impact and reality of the current situation will be discussed in this session.

Chief Editor of Setopati Amit Dhakal, Professor Prof. Dr. Sanjib Upreti, and Activist Sita Pariyar will be panelist and Media Person Saroj Raj Adhikari will facilitate the session.

Session 14: Mukhya Manth Mul Kuda

Time: 02:00 – 03:30 PM

In the final day, there is a session named Mukhya Manth, Mul Kuda meaning Key Persons, Major Discussion, where the Chief Minister of Karnali Province Mahendra bahadur Shahi and Chief Minister of Province 2 Lal babu Raut will discuss on several issues regarding the provincial government.

The session will be facilitated by Media Person Dil Bhusan Pathak. Karnali province and province 2 are geographically different but similar in terms of development, poverty and linkage with the central government. Two chief ministers of the different but similar province will share experience and discuss in the same stage in the festival.

Closing Ceremony

Time: 03:30 – 05:00 PM

In the closing ceremony, Chief of the Karnali Province Govinda Prasad Kalauni will be the Chief Guest and vote of thanks will be delivered by the Coordinator of Karnali Utsav Kamal Lamsal.

Photo Exhibition

Throughout the second edition of Karnali Utsav, there will be solo photo exhibition of young cyclist and guide Ramchandra Basnet (Bhaskar). In the photo exhibition, photographs of several 15-20 places and lifestyle of Karnali will be displayed. Major aim of the exhibition is to promote hidden tourist spots of Karnali province to all through the festival.

Karnali Utsav will be streamed LIVE on official Facebook page of Karnali Utsav: facebook.com/karnaliutsav and further information will be shared on the same page. For more details visit karnaliutsav.hriti.org. Infographics source: Karnali Utsav.


The first edition of Karnali Utsav was organized on Falgun 19, 20 and 21 2076 at Bulbule Park, Birendranagar Surkhet. In this first edition there were three major themes for three days and 14 sessions based on these theme. In 14 sessions, total of 59 speakers shared and discussed in several sessions. As per the organizer, about 10 thousand people participated the festival physically and about 1 lakh 60 thousand participated through virtual or online medium. For more details about the first edition go to this page and visit official YouTube channel for several videos and for more details about Karnali Utsav visit karnaliutsav.hriti.org.

Summary videos of three days




Sessions, Speakers and Facilitators

Group Photo – First Edition of Karnali Utsav 2020

Know About Karnali Utsav .. Kuda Karnalika

Know About Karnali Utsav .. Kuda Karnalika

The constant pounding and churning of ideas has the power to break the solid mountains of the Karnali. It can unleashe the potentials of development. Karnali Utsav is a festival of intellectual discourses, a celebration of words, festivals of art and culture. Karnali...

read more

You May Also Like…