KATHMANDU: Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai today splurged on books on diverse disciplines such as contemporary politics, peace processes, political economy and science.
Prime Minister Bhattarai spent Rs 24,000 out of Rs 34,000, monthly salary of Ashadh, on the books at the 16th book exhibition at Bhrikuti Mandap, according to his personal secretary Biswadeep Pandey. Most of the books were in English.
During his visit to the book stalls, he would pick books and hand them over to security personnel keeping assistants busy footing the bill. According to Pandey, the PM bought around 35 books from different stalls.
At the Mandala Book Point stall, Bhattarai asked for the book ‘Nepal in Transition: From People’s War to Fragile Peace’ a Cambridge University Press publication with Sebastian Von Einsiedel, David M Malone and Suman Pradhan as editors.
Bhattarai, a PhD on ‘The Nature of Underdevelopment and Regional structure of Nepal: A Marxist Analysis’, also bought some books on development.
At the Ratna Pustak Bhandar stall, he sought Decentralisation and Development, which has Tony Hagen as the author. Bhanadar’s manager Suresh Shrestha told this daily that he could not provide Prime Minister’s other favourites as most of the books at his stall were on Nepali literature.
Bhattarai also splurged on dictionaries of Mathematics, Electronics and Biology at the Penguin publication stall. Sellers had offered the dictionaries as gifts, but the PM preferred to pay.
President of National Booksellers and Publishers Union Ramchandra Timothy said it took about 16 years to have the country’s executive chief at the book fair.
Timothy said Bhattarai had visited the fairs in the past as well.
The voracious reader also bought Francis Fukuyama’s ‘Origin of the Political Order’, Lokraj Baral’s Nepal - Nation-State in the Wilderness, David Bornstein’s ‘How to Change the World,’ Susane Hangen’s Rise of Ethnic Politics in Nepal, ‘The Aryan Debate’, ‘Does the Elephant Dance? : Contemporary Indian Foreign Policy’ and Marxism and Class Analysis’.
At a programme yesterday, Bhattarai’s wife and leader Hisila Yami had informed that Bhattarai reads for an hour before bedtime even during his hectic schedules.