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  Nepal set to Observe Grand Golden Jubilee of Mt. Cho-Oyu after Mt. Everest


His Majesty's Government has adopted a policy to celebrate Golden Jubilee Anniversary of accent on the Himalayan peaks above 8000 meters. Inspired by the grand success of the Mount Everest Golden Jubilee in May 2003, Nepal is now preparing to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Mount Cho-Oyu (8201 meters or 26,900 feet) on October 19, 2004. The Golden Jubilee celebration of Mount Everest (8848 meters) brought an overwhelming number of mountaineers and international media to Nepal. During this period Nepal was on limelight through the pervasive coverage in major electronic and print media. The event was successful on portraying the image of Nepal, as a major happening place on the earth and elevating the enchanting destination status to a tectonic height.

The mega event "Grand Golden Jubilee of Mount Cho-Oyu after Mt. Everest" is so designed to celebrate one of humankind's greatest achievements by setting footprint on the world's sixth highest peak on the planet. This historic event will further signify the glory of the peak and fetch in positive publicity not only about Nepal as a most happening destination but also as a pioneer player in the arena of mountain sports and adventure activities. Series of lined up activities as part of this event will also encourage all spectrum of people wishing to visit Nepal.

The Cho Oyu Golden Jubilee Celebration Committee headed by the Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation has innumerable events to celebrate beginning from October 17, 2004. The grand finale of the Cho Oyu Golden Jubilee Celebration will be held on October 19, 2004. The last leg of the program will conclude with the felicitation to the successful luminaries of Cho Oyu- S. Joechler, H. Tichy of Austria and P. Dawa Lama of Nepal, who has set the record by setting their first foot while ascending Mount Cho Oyu on October 19, 1954.

Cho Oyu sits astride the border of Nepal and Tibet, about 20 miles west of Mount Everest. It is the sixth highest mountain in the world. Cho Oyu is translated in Tibetan as "the goddess of the turquoise." A famous trade route crossed Nangpa La pass, just west of Cho Oyu, and very close to the Advanced Base Camp. From Tibet, salt used to be brought over this pass to Namche Bazaar (Khumbu's commerce center) in exchange for grain from the south.

Some programs designed to mark one of the most important days in the history of Nepal's mountaineering include Street Festival and Food Festival in Thamel and Patan, Philatelic Exhibition at Patan Durbar Square, Puspha Bristi or showering of flowers at Tundikhel, Civic reception for the successful Mount Cho-Oyu summiteers at Durbar Square Kathmandu, colourful procession, cultural program, bringing out the commemorative stamps, symposium, felicitation of the Cho-Oyu ascenders and Gala Dinners.

As per the policy of opening more mountains for climbing the government has already opened 326 peaks for climbing. Similarly, it has come up with different tourism friendly policies to facilitate the mountain tourism to contribute to the economic growth. Some of the proactive steps that the government has already taken towards this end include waiving royalty fees for 20 peaks, reducing royalty fees by 75% for 40 peaks and provision of liaison officers for peaks above 6500 meters only. It is worthy to mention here that mountain tourism generated over Rs. 18 Crores from royalty fee in 2003.

At a time when tourism has become a major forex earning source of the country and mountain tourism a major part of it, celebration of such occasions is expected to help boost the country's tourism industry as well as promote Nepal as one of the outstanding tourist destinations in the world.

Thus, His Majesty's Government of Nepal expects to enhance the glory of Nepal in the international tourism marketplace and also promote domestic tourism by organizing a variety of programs commemorating the first ascend to different peaks above 8000 meters.

The implementing agency for carrying out all the activities/programs concerning the Grand Golden Jubilee of Mt. Cho-Oyu after Mt. Everest will be Nepal Mountaineering Association.

 

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