Skyline of Sandhikharka
|Elevation||960 m (3,150 ft)|
|• Religions||Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist|
|Time zone||UTC+5:45 (NST)|
Sandhikharka Municipality (Nepali: सन्धिखर्क नगरपालिका) is the headquarter of Arghakhanchi District which lies in the Lumbini Zone of Nepal. The former village development committee (VDC) was converted into a municipality on 18 May 2014 by merging the existing Sandhikharka, Bangla, Narapani, Khanchikot, Kimadada, Argha and Dibharna VDCs evdo.  It is located, in a valley surrounded by hills, in the western part of the capital, Kathmandu.
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Sandhikharka is situated between the two hills Argha and Khanchi, from which the district's name is derived. Sandhikharka has made a significant progress in road building and the training of people through various national and international non-governmental organisations. Although Sandhikharka is a small town, in recent years migration to developed countries has increased, with migrants sending billions of remittance to their families every year. Development of new houses, privately own luxury vehicles and the modern atmosphere itself have shown that the town has marvellously progressed in terms of economy and other sectors.
Three small rivers; the Bangi, Ghoche and Bhadri merge at Chutrabeshi, within Sandhikharka. Therefore, people sometimes call the rivers Tribeni. There is one pitched road that connects to the national highway at Gorusinghe. However Arghakhanchi district was the first district in Nepal where all the VDCs were officially linked with the motorable roads.
Sandhikharka is located around 960 meters above sea level. The climate changes from season to season. During summer, the maximum temperature reaches about 37°C which can be significantly warm for some visitors and in the winter season the temperature is usually between 1-10°C. In summer the rainfall is high hills in winter the surrounding higher hills remain cold and sometimes are covered in snow.
Many years ago the region was fully covered by the wild grasses called "Kharka". Farmers used to bring their cattle to graze on the land. This area was a boader of two small kingdoms i.e. Argha and Khanchi during Chaubisi rajya (24 principalities). There was always conflict about the ownership of the land between the two monarchs of this place. Later, in the interest of public welfare, the kings decided to make a treaty between the two little kingdoms. Treaty is the English translation of Sandhi which means a formally concluded and ratified agreement between states. The two states created the treaty for the land of "Kharka" which eventually lead to the name of Sandhikharka, the headquarter of Arghakhanchi district.
Attack during Maoist insurgency
On September 8, 2002, the town was involved in a massive battle between the government forces and "thousands" of Maoists, reportedly led by the two most wanted terrorists of that time Top Bahadur Rayamajhi and Pampha Bhusal who come from the district. Heavily armed rebels engaged the bases of civilian police, armed police and the Royal Nepalese Army and overpowered them following a few hours of gunbattle. They torched all government buildings except the hospital, most never being rebuilt. About 50 policemen and 70 rebels were killed in the night-long battle, with almost 36 police injured. However, doubts remain over how many of the dead were actually Maoists. A second attack was launched on September 10, 2002, in which guerillas killed at least 65 security personnel, including soldiers, through 12 hours of fighting. Forty-one personnel were reported as injured in this attack. A telecommunication tower was destroyed as a result of the second attack, and reinforcements were rushed in by helicopter as well as a government-sponsored effort to hold the town. Unnamed leaders said lack of communication and a failed response from authorities which led to the government's defeats. CNN speculated that these attacks were aimed at disrupting the upcoming election by forcing the Nepali government to impose a state of emergency.
2005 Maoist attack
Maoists launched a third attack on March 4, 2005. This operation backfired, and the Nepali military killed 30 Maoists in what BBC called "one of the bloodiest clashes since the royal coup." There were no casualties of troops. After forcing rebels into retreat, the military recovered "some crude bombs, terrorist documents and equipment used to operate mines". Despite his military's success, King Gyanendra of Nepal imposed a state of emergency, detained political party leaders and imposed censorship of the press. Nepal's military released a statement on the fighting:
On 4 March, terrorists... fled after strong resistance by the security forces. In the action, about 30 terrorists are estimated to have been killed and some injured.
At the time of the 1991 Nepal census it had a population of 8921. It had 6703 married people, with 185 having more than one spouse as of that census. Sandhikharka had 7706 literate people, and 2272 were attending school as of that census. This high literacy rate once drew people from outside Arghakhanchi District to Sandhikharka for its good schools.
"'Shree Janajyoti Higher Secondary School"' and "'Shree Bhagawati Secondary school"' are two of the oldest public schools in Sandhikharka. Both of these institutions have successfully produced thousand of skilful graduates providing first class education with a focus on practical skills and professional relevance, which have helped its graduates giving excellent prospects for career development.
The first English boarding school was "'Tribeni English Boarding school"' in Chutrabesi Sandhikharkha which was established in 1981 by a gentleman called Indra Gopal. After successfully running for few years this school shut down its operation due to some poor management problems. Later some existing members of Tribeni school formed another great school called Himali Children Academy which produced a very talented scholars. In the private sector '"Arghakhanchi Higher Secondary boarding School '" as well as '"Gauri Shankar English boarding School"' have been able to hold a successful reputation to provide quality education. "'Panini Multiple Campus"' is the first and oldest college affiliated by Tribhuvan university in this district which is founded by Mr. Gyan Hari Acharya. This college is running many graduate and undergraduate courses covering various sectors of education.
Closure of schools
In October 2004, the Maoists ordered the closure of all private schools in Sandhikharka, as well as the rest of Arghakhanchi District. This came a year after they promised to keep the schools open if they cut their tuition fees by at least 20 percent, which was what occurred. According to schoolchild Pratiba Acharya, "Maoists thought that only rich people study in boarding schools like mine, so they want to close them." Further, they destroyed schools who were operated by their enemies and those they disagreed with, after trying to change their curricula was to no avail. Many students were sent to public schools, which teach in Nepali. This posed two problems. For one thing, Nepali, though widely spoken and understood, is not invariably the mother tongue of all students in multilingual, multi-ethnic Nepal. In addition, private school students are accustomed to English as the primary medium of instruction.
The purpose of Village Development Committees is to organise village people structurally at a local level and creating a partnership between the community and the public sector for improved service delivery system. A VDC has a status as an autonomous institution and authority for interacting with the more centralised institutions of governance in Nepal. In doing so, the VDC gives village people an element of control and responsibility in development, and also ensures proper utilization and distribution of state funds and a greater interaction between government officials, NGOs and agencies. The village development committees within a given area will discuss education, water supply, basic health, sanitation and income and will also monitor and record progress which is displayed in census data.
In VDCs there is one elected chief, usually elected with over an 80% majority. From each ward, there is also a chief that is elected along with these there are also four members elected or nominated.
There are 4 radio stations, 1 community television and few local newspapers published weekly. The List of Newspaper, F.M and TV is follow:
- Arghakhanchi.Com news portal Since 2006,
- Radio Arghakhanchi,
- Radio Deurali,
- Naya F.M,
- Suryodaya F.M and
- Arghakhanchi Television
- "72 new municipalities announced". My Republica.com. Retrieved 2014-06-10.
- "Government announces 72 new municipalities". The Kathmandu Post. Retrieved 2014-06-10.
- Haviland, Charles (2004-11-15). "Harsh lessons of Nepal's insurgency". BBC News. Retrieved 2008-08-23.
- Yogi, Bhagirath (2002-09-19). "The Deepening Crisis". Spotlight Weekly. Archived from the original on November 30, 2004. Retrieved 2008-08-23.
- Nepal, Kishore (2004-05-27). "The scars are still raw in Argakhanchi". Nepali Times. Archived from the original on 2011-07-24. Retrieved 2008-08-23.
- "Toll could soar, as dozens reported missing". The Kathmandu Post. 2002-09-09. Archived from the original on November 25, 2004. Retrieved 2008-08-23.
- "Heavy casualties feared in clashes". NepalNews. 2002-09-09.
- "Nepal Maoists launch fresh attack". CNN. 2002-09-09. Retrieved 2008-08-23.
- "Nepal's army 'kills 30 Maoists'". BBC News. 2005-03-07. Retrieved 2008-08-23.
- "Nepal Census 2001". Nepal's Village Development Committees. Digital Himalaya. Retrieved 2008-08-23.
- "Indian Assistance of NRs.22.57 Millions for two School in District Arghakhanchi". Indian Embassy in Nepal. 2008-01-11. Archived from the original on May 9, 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-02.
- "Village Development Committee". Society for Community Support for Primary Education in Balochistan. Archived from the original on 2009-02-01. Retrieved 2008-11-25..
- http://www.arghakhanchi.com (in Nepalese)