A new page was added in the history of Rotary movement on April 13, 1959 when Nepal officially entered into the global family of Rotarians. This was the day when Rotary Club of Kathmandu was chartered as the first club in Nepal.
Rotary Club of Kathmandu has been making every effort to attain the objectives of Rotary through projects focusing primarily on Health, Hunger and Humanity. Mega Eye Camps, T. B. Control, Leprosy, eradication of Polio, installation of first Radio therapy Unit at Bhaktapur Hospital, installation of first Cath lab in Bir Hospital and then at Sahid Ganga Lal Hospital, establishment of Eastern Hospital at Biratnagar, first Maxillofacial center at National Dental Hospital, medical supplies to the National hospitals and other health institutions, donation of several (8) Ambulances in the different areas, Health camps, various scholarship awards, upgrading and equipping schools, training to the ANM for their self-sustaining, construction of school building and providing physical instrument for its development, Child train and Children’s park at Bhrikutimandap and improvement in Water supply system and construction of several reservoirs, are some of the areas Rotary Club of Kathmandu initiated and supported projects with the kind support of partners in service like Inner Wheel Club, Rotaract Club and Interact Club as well as the RVC and RCCs.
Few connecting historical facts :
The history of Rotary movement in Nepal was started with the first meeting of Rotary Club of Kathmandu on 20th November 1958, as a provisional meeting, at Royal Hotel, Kantipath (Now the Office of Election Commission and Vice President of Nepal). Since venue of the meeting was not permanent therefore, alternatively it was held in Hotel Snow View and elsewhere. Hence the need of its own land and building was felt.
RC Kathmandu was sponsored by RC Darbhanga under the RI District 325 (including Andaman Nicobar Island and Bangaladesh) when Rtn. Shital Prasad Sinha (Classification of medicinal education) was the President of that club and Rtn. Surendra N. Verma (Classification of Mineral Oil Industry, Refine Oil product distributing) was the Governor’s Special Representative (GSR) District Governor of R.I. District 325 was B. H. Engineer Dhanbad. Rtn. Clifford A. Randall from Milwaukee, WI, USA was the Rotary International President, who has signed in the Charter Certificate of RC Kathmandu along with then RI Secretary Rtn. George R. Means, (from Greenwood IN. USA who served as General Secretary of RI since 1953 to 1972) on 13th April 1959; RI Theme was Help Shape the Future. Formal program of Charter presentation ceremony was held on 28th June 1959 as 32nd meeting of RC Kathmandu followed by Lunch in the presence of Club’s Patron in Chief Late King Mahendra BB Shah Dev as the Chief Guest with 25 members among 30. As an Office Secretary of the club, I got the opportunity to meet 4 Charter Members : Late Gopal Rajbhandari, Manindra Raj Shrestha, Gulab S. Harjani and Biswa Nath Jajodia and former Charter members: Siba Prasad Rauniyar, Gopi Ram Ghiraiya, Himalaya SJB Rana, Charter Secretary Jagadish SJB Rana etc.
Retired General Kiran SJB Rana was the Charter President; he led the club for 4 years as a President. Rtn. Late Jagadish SJB Rana was the Secretary, after a long period he again joined as a Charter member of RC Kathmandu North, similarly late Rtn. Gopal Rajbhandari was the Treasurer who is the history maker of Nepal Rotary as first Nepali recipient of Service Above Self Award which is the highest Award of the Rotary International, then Charter Secretary of RC Yala, PDG Dilendra Raj Shrestha, First District Governor of RI District 3292 as well as the Charter President of RC Patan West PDG Rtn. Dr. Tika Man Vaidya, First Nepalese lady Rotary President of RC Kathmandu Mid Town, Major Donor Rtn. Mrs. Ambica Shrestha, and PDG Tirtha Man Sakya and PDG Keshav Kunwar also has received that Award.
Incidentally, the son of Charter President of RC Kathmandu, former ambassador to UK, Rtn. Prabal SJB Rana became the Charter President of RC Kantipur, which was sponsored by RC Patan West. Generally, GSR will be the Past President of any club but there are some cases where GSR were non-Past President i.e. Rtn. Kamal Mani Dixit who served RC Kathmandu 4 times as a secretary was the GSR to RC Patan, Rtn. Tulasi Neupane, then Secretary of RC Patan was the GSR to RC Patan West, and Rtn. Deepak Chhetry was GSR to RC Kantipur.
Past President of RC Kathmandu, Late Rtn.Arjun SJB Rana, father of PDG (2016-17) Multiple Major Donor Rtn. Jaya Rajya Laxmi Shah, Past President of RC Jawalakhel had joined the RC Kathmandu on 109th meeting of the club on 21st December 1960 and was the 6th President of RC Kathmandu in the Rotary Year 1964-65 when Late PP Gopal Rajbhandari was the Secretary. Spouse of PDG Rtn. Jaya Shah, Capt. Late Bobby Bikram Shah was also the member of RC Kathmandu during 80’s decade.
RC Kathmandu sponsored 6 Rotary Clubs:
1.RC Biratnagar, GSR was Late PP Hulas Chandra Golchha (Charter President Late PM Nagendra Prasad Rijal) (Rtn. Basu Dev Golyan became District Governor and Rtn. Santosh Rijal is DG for next year).
2. RC Patan, GSR was Rtn. Kamal Mani Dixit, who later transferred to RC Patan (Charter President Surendra Raj Sharma) (Rtn. Tirtha Man Sakya became District Governor).
3. RC Kathmandu Mid Town, GSR was Late PDG Tehmas R. Manekshaw (CP Dr. Roop Jyoti) (Rtn. Yogendra Man Pradhan became District Governor)
4. RC Kathmandu Metro, GSR was PP Mani Dhoj Joshi from RC Kathmandu Mid Town (Charter President Rtn.Pradeep Raj Pandey) (Rtn. Rajib Pokharel became District Governor)
5. RC Kathmandu North, GSR was Late PDG Tehmas R. Manekshaw (Charter President Rtn.Shyam B. Panday)
6. RC Kalanki, Kathmandu, Advisor was PP Rtn. Rajendra Kumar Dahal (District Secretary 20/21) (Charter President Rtn.Sulochana Sigdel)
Few members who came from other clubs and went to other :
•Rtn. Kamal Mani Dixit and Charter Secretary of RC Patan PP M.L. Kayastha transferred to RC Patan
•Luke O. Sunde transferred to RC Kathmandu Mid Town.
•Rtn. Bijaya Lal Shrestha left the Rotary and later, joined RC Patan West and became President of RC Patan West
•Late Giridhar Lal Manandhar also left Rotary and later joined RC Kathmandu Mid Town and became its President.
•Charter Secretary Late Jagadish SJB Rana discontinued Rotary and later joined RC Kathmandu North as Charter member.
•Late PDG Tehmas R. Manekshaw transferred to RC Kantipur
•R. K. Kohli and Mrs. Reema Kohli transferred to RC Patan
•PP Anup Subedi sifted to Ontario Canada and became member of Rotary Club of West Ottawa
•Rtn. Paras Mani Pokharel sifted to Japan from Rotaract and became NRN Japan President and also joins Rotary Club at Nagoya, Japan
•Former Rotaract President Pramod Poudel is a President Elect of Rotary Club of Kathmandu Mid Town
•PP of RC Kasthamandup Rtn. Rajan Bahadur Raut joined continually to RC Kathmandu
•PP Rtn.Mukunda Sharma Poudel and Prof. Dr. Rtn.Pushpa Raj Sharma join from RC Pokhara Mid Town
Few members who are directly involved in the Certain Political Party could not continue their membership i.e. PP Kuber Prasad Sharma, Gagan Thapa, U.P. Lamichhane, Upendra Karki by certain reason.
From Rotaract Club to Rotary Club of Kathmandu
PP Rtn. Anup Subedi, PP Rtn. Dan Bahadur Chand, U.P. Lamichhane, Durga Bahadur Rana (PP of Rotaract Club of Pashupati Kathmandu), PP Rtn.Narayan Krishna Kharel (PP of Rotaract Club of Pashupati Kathmandu), Rtn.Sujata Nepal, Kuber Karki, Upendra Karki, Rtn Rajendra Gautam, Rtn.Sushil Kumar Karki, President Rtn. Achut Babu Ojha, Dr. Rtn.Pradeep Pandey, Utsav Dangi, Rtn.Sonika Thapaliya, Chandani Jaiswal (PP of Rotaract Club of Kantipur Dental College), and Rtn.Mohan Krishna Maharjan (PP of Rotaract Club of Pashupati Kathmandu).
Main historical fact:
• A legacy of Rotarian has been maintained by Rtn. Ashish Jajodia who is the Grandson of our late Charter member Rtn.Biswa Nath Jajodia
• There were some Ruling Ambassadors as the members i.e. from Japan, Germany, Israel and Egypt
About the District:
In the Rotary Year 1958-59, Nepal was under RI District 325, DG was B. H. Engineer Dhanbad. Then Bangladesh created a separate District and our District became 329 in 1977-78 when DG was Prabhat K. Sinha. Again, RI makes all the District in 4 digit and our District became 3290 in 1984-85 when DG was Dr. S. C. Nandy.
Relatives of Rotarian of our club:
Brother in laws as members: Late PP Tek Chandra Pokharel & Late PP Sushil Bhattarai, Late PP Sushil Bhattarai & Late PP Rajeswar Pant, and PP Dr. Loke Bikram Thapa & PP Dr. Om K. Malla.
Major Donors: Late PP Gopal Rajbhandari, Late PDG Tehmas R. Manekshaw, R. I District 3290, PDG Rtn.Ratna Man Sakya RI District 3292, Late PP Tek Chandra Pokharel, PP Rtn.Bala Krishna Shrestha and PP Rtn. Ram Gartaula.
District Conferences organized on March 4, 1967 at Exhibition Ground; Chief Guest was Late King Mahendra. Second one in April 9-11, 1975 in Kathmandu in the presence of RI President Ernesto Imbassahy de Mellow and DG Iftekharul Alam. Third one in 21-23 Feb. 1997 in Royal Nepal Academy during the period of DG Tehmas R. Manekshaw.