Texting ‘Jam’ to 4321 wasn’t helpful on May 1. The answer came back as: “There is no jam and no pressure…”
Yes, there weren’t any vehicles in the streets of Kathmandu today…but neither were the streets free of ‘pressure’. I haven’t figured out what ‘pressure’ means, actually…at least in their perspectives.
There was ‘pressure’ in major parts of the city. It took us (cousin n me) 45 minutes to reach Durbar Marg (on foot), and another hour and a half to traverse through the massive and confused mob, moving from and in all directions, from Durbar Marg to New Road gate.
At Ratnapark, the speakers blasted with ‘patriotic’ songs every now and then, while street vendors were making good business. It was quite an experience–sandwiched amidst strangers or ‘maoists’ who were trying to get into the Khula Manch. I took off my glasses, for fear of being crushed by the frenzy of excited people.
The man behind me kept saying, ‘Pelnus na bahini, agadi pelnus…’ Haina kata tira pelne dai, thau ta chaina…