Jumla, I could only think to reach on my dream. But the dream came true this March. There was much said and written about Jumla. I Initially I was not convinced at all when I was told I need to travel to Jumla for my work. All thanks to my brother who had been to Jumla last Dashian on bike tour to Rara lake, Mugu. He shared with me that there are Newars as well. I do not need to worry about my appetite as I easily get Newari dish and won’t be home sick.
It is the most visit place in Nepal surrounded by natural hills and mountains. Jumla is a part of Karnali Zone and one of the most popular district in Nepal among 75 districts. Finally, I reached there and I was spellbound after I got to see hills covered with snow through my flight. The flight was scary, adventurous and definitely gives you goose bumps when it takes almost 45 degree turn near a hill to land on Jumla Airport.
Jumla is the place where Nepali language originated from. The origin of Nepali language is Sinja of Jumla. Therefore, the Nepali dialect “Khas Bhasa” is still spoken among the people in this region. The place is popular for Apples and the entrance to “Rara lake”. Jumla on the banks of the Tila River, is one of the highest rice growing areas in the world.
This post is dedicated to the environment and scenario of the Jumla. We talk more about faces of Jumla on next post.
“जाउ जाउ जुम्ला जान्य कहिले
पाक्य फल खान्य कहिले “
Jumla was heavily affected by the decade- long conflict between them communist party of Nepal-Maoist (CPN-M) and the Nepal Government. Jumla’s economy is largely driven by trade in herbal products such as Yarchagumpha. Remoteness is the biggest challenge that limits not only Jumla residents’ ability to reach government services and other programs, but the amounts of goods, including essentials like food, that can reach the people. It was also observed during my stay that gender and caste based discrimination is still prevalent which also limit opportunities and impose daily hardships on some individuals and groups. Likewise, as apples are quite popular and Jumal is the city of apple, we do not get chance to taste it. The main drawback of Jumla and obstruct in its development is lack of appropriate technologies and facilities for storage, packaging, marketing and transportation. Jumla flourished high value agriculture for apple, walnut, vegetable seed and herb production. For example, people are not able to harness the potential of animal husbandry, as there is not a single cheese factory in the Mid-Western Region.
As Jumla is the best trekking route to high range mountains, connecting to Mugu, Dolpa, Humla and other local tourist areas, it could be great if it is developed with good management system.