Friday, 6 November 2015

Nepal, Mr. Modi and Petrol stations

I know that I haven’t posted for a very long time for now. Please accept my sincere apology. There have been lots of things that going around in my life. I have moved to my home country Nepal after almost 10 years of stay in Europe in February 2015.  Unfortunately, a big earthquake hit Nepal on 25th April 2015 that has severely affected many peoples in Nepal. Around 10,000 peoples were dead.  Many people lost their relatives and belongings. Everybody suffered by wrath of the mighty Earthquake.  

Things started to become normal after several months and suddenly Mr. Modi, the prime minister of India Modi-fied the life of Nepalese people who were attempting to enjoy their day to day normal life and were enthralled by newly formulated constitution.  Nepal was slapped by an unofficial blockade from India limiting supply of essential commodities and fuel in Nepal. Being a landlocked country, Nepal solely relies on India for its need of fuel. Being a sovereign country, Nepal has every right to decide what is right for the people of Nepal and to promulgate constitution that was ratified by over 90 % of constitution assembly members. India did not like some part of the constitution and started the so called “unofficial” blockade since beginning of September 2015.  The interference of India on internal affair of Nepal is totally wrong from any possible angle but surprisingly India thinks that they have every right to bully Nepal. Now, due to the blockade life of a common Nepalese people is very miserable. There is scarcity of cooking gas, no fuel (petrol and diesel) to run vehicles. Miles long queue of vehicles are a normal scene at every nook of the capital, Kathmandu. If someone has 20 liters of petrol or diesel or 2-3 cylinders of cooking gas, then he/she is part of the minority of people in Kathmandu who happily celebrated the ongoing festive season of Dashain and Tihar. For everyone else, days are spent counting numbers of fuel carrying vehicles entering Nepal and queuing at a fuel station on a scorching heat. Things are so bad in Kathmandu and majority of places in Nepal that if you like to irritate someone, just say ‘Did I tell you something, you look like Mr. Modi with that beard’. LOL.

Rambling aside, I was looking for a map of fuel stations in Kathmandu, and no surprise I could not find one. Not even in the official website of Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC) , the sole body that is responsible for import and distribution of fuels within Nepal. I did not even find a simple table list. Shame NOC. So I decided to create one. For the map, I used Open Street Map (OSM) data. The fuel station list may be incomplete as data was gathered from Voluntary GIS (VGIS) approach. For queering the data, Overpass-API was used. Overpass-API is a query language that is used to grab data of interest from OSM. For displaying the map, the power of GIST from GITHUB was used. If you like KML file of the map then click here. I will write a detail post about Overpass-API sometime in future when I will be tired of scolding Mr. Modi for his wrong deeds. For now its everyone’s favorite things to do here in Nepal. Even ladies love it more than watching  Indian drama serials.