In Ujwal’s Gift to Erica, I found a reminder to myself.
The moment I got the news about Ujwal dai not being with us anymore, I went numb. I was feeling terribly heavy that I wanted to cry my heart out. I could think of no one but Aalok. I called him and we both cried over phone. That’s when I got to learn that he along with Ranju are doing the final rites of cremation. Apparently, Ujwal’s dad had told them, “you guys are his family, his children, and Ujwal would want to be this way, so do as you feel right.” They played the role of children, did the needful while bidding adieu.
Next day, I called Aalok and I was told that there was no “13-day kriya” as generally Hindus do. Nevertheless, people could visit the home and meet the family members and Erica Bhauju (wife of Ujwal dai). I wanted to meet Erica Bhauju. The last time when we met, we had spoken a lot on personal side of our lives. She was sharing how they met, how they got married, why they don’t stay with parents and staying separately in a rented house, and how with all that, life is still beautiful and balanced. I was quite fascinated by the way they been living their life with their terms.
That cheerful face of bhauju with Ujwal dai in boxer next to her and all the conversations were playing in a loop inside my head. I was feeling terrible for myself and for her, that I so badly wanted to meet her. So me with my wife went to meet her.
We entered the premises. Nearby entrance, there was a picture of Ujwal dai with candles and flowers. In an open space, Bhauju was sitting talking to visitors and in another corner, there was an old lady that I learned was Ujwal dai’s mom. There were smiles on those faces. As soon as I saw that, I felt relieved because amidst the sadness and the grief, there was no as such depressed vibe and desolation but acceptance of the reality with a smile.
Aalok pointing at me asked Erica Bhauju, "chinnu bhayo?" (do you know him?). She with a smile said "kina na chinnu" (of course, I do). Looking at my wife, she said "So, that's your wife...we had spoken a lot about you in our last meet."
We took a seat and started talking on how Ujwal might have caught the Covid. According to Erica Bhauju, they had left for Everest trek along with 6 others, and during the trekking, Ujwal dai had once got a high fever but next day he was fine and continued with the trek. Once got back, out of 8, 4 were tested positive and coincidently those 4 were the group that got split during the trekking, so she assumes Covid must have happened after the split. While having the talk, Ujwal dai’s mom was adding something into the conversation. From general societal point of view, her tone and state of mind was no where appeared to be that of a mother who just had lost her son. It clearly felt like we visited a house of a martyr whose wife and family members despite in grief finding a solace and pride for how their son lived his life per his term and went like a shinning star to never disappear.
As I was contemplating everything, Erica bhauju said this to me:
Even after leaving, Ujwal left me with a gift — the freedom of mourning the loss in my way and comfort — that I don’t have to be treated obsolete and useless as soon as the husband is dead like how many women from Nepal are made to feel. Ujwal always used to say this kriya thing is nothing but religious way of oppressing woman that if a wife dies, husband does not need to do anything but if husband dies, she has to go through the worst treatment in the name of rites and tradition. Ujwal freed me from going through that. I love him and I miss him and I don’t need to prove that by skipping salts, sleeping on floor, covering myself in white gowns in misery. I am still wearing “pote” and tika he gave me because it was given to me by Ujwal in our wedding and if I have to give away all the gifts that he gave me then I will probably have to give up all the memories and our love as well! What kind of tradition and concept it is that you need to throw away the very same thing that holds the memory with the person? At night, I can go back to my bed, eating what I feel like without torturing myself in the name of rites and tradition or culture. My in-laws and everyone in the family are supportive because they know this is exactly how Ujwal would want it. We don’t have a biological child but Ujwal always used to say whole Nepal is our children. I didn’t understand what he meant by that then, but now it perfectly makes sense to me. Look at Alok. He is no less than a son. Running for hospital, doing everything a son does, and then the final rites. Likewise, his idea of social equity now completely makes sense to me. He left by securing the greatest comfort and ease of living my life with unconditional love and support surrounding me, that I would probably not be getting if married to any other guy….
While saying all that, on her face, a sense of pride and immense respect was visible. I totally could understand what she was trying to say and what she must be feeling at this moment of grief and loss.
Before leaving from there, we met Ujwal dai’s dad. All he said was “ek joog ma ek choti janmincha Ujwal jasto manche….I am glad I am happened to be the father of such man.”
As we were riding back to home, my wife said “…this family has so much to show the world how mourning can be done, without being bind by rites and tradition as if without which there is no other way to bid adieu to your loved one.”
I felt like Ujwal dai one last time reminded me “keep marching towards accomplishing the rational and progressive society….people will thank us for transforming this society into the kind that they never thought could be possible.”
Keep reading, keep learning….
Come Together Community
“Come Together Community” is a campaign initiated by KMAG with an aim to bring together all the cafes and restaurants and help them grow through collective learning and support, where KMAG will act as a bridge to connect people involved in cafe and restaurant business and stand as their media partner throughout the journey.
To understand the campaign and how it gonna help the restaurant and cafe entrepreneurs, we first need to understand some of the harsh realities; problems and challenges that the community suffers from.
Mr. Rabin invested 1 cr in a restaurant business. It’s been 1 year now and his business is still not doing good. He wonders what went wrong and what he could do to make things alright, but he has no place to go to find the answers.
Ms. Shilla started an amazing cafe. It has its own stories, expertise, specialties, themes and vision, but no one knows about it. She wishes someone could write about her cafe, talk about her cafe and let others learn about the amazing stories and ideas behind the cafe.
Mr. Shiva runs a restaurant and bar. Police often comes harassing him for some or other excuses. Likewise, vendors and sometimes locals trouble him. He does not know where to complain and he does not want to write about it on his social media pages because he is scared of creating more trouble. He wish there be someone who could voice for him, lobby for him, and fight for him.
Mr. Prabin is back in Nepal after working for many years in Dubai. He wants to start a restaurant business with his hard-earned money but he is totally clueless about the market. He wishes he has someone to tell him where to buy furniture, where to buy equipment, how to build the right team, and so on. He is looking for a group consisting of experienced people who could guide him through.
Those are a few common cases every restaurant and cafe owner have felt and wondered. We, humans, are better together. As they say, united you win, divided you fail. A lot could be accomplished if restaurants and cafes come together.
WHAT IS OUR PLAN?
We plan to bring together all the restaurants and cafe in one place through our web and app and do the following:
- Provide relevant information and knowledge related to the hospitality industry and the market in the form of articles, videos, e-books, and distribute among the community members, so that they could learn about their sector at an ease.
- Provide relevant knowledge related to businesses and marketing, and other useful information to help the community member in doing business and marketing in proven ways.
- Create stories based on community members and their businesses and take it to a larger mass as a media partner.
- Write and fight on behalf of the community members for any issue and challenges that they have to go through because of the government or others.
- Facilitate discussions and networking within the community and with the people that should matter to them.
- Promote restaurants and cafes from the community and help them get more businesses.
- Supply Chain Management: By bringing all the restaurants and cafes together, we can help the community buy things in bulk, helping them get goods and services at much better deal, which will eventually help the restaurant in reducing the operational cost.
WHY ARE WE DOING IT?
- To create an informed society through shared knowledge, information, and stories so that no one fails because of ignorance.
- To support and promote local businesses and activities by acting as their messenger (media partner).
- To connect and unite people with shared interests and passion, shared values and principles so that no one has to feel lonely, lost or helpless and instead feel empowered and confident.
HOW IT WORKS?
Step 1: Subscribe To The Community.
Step 2: KMAG will recognize you as a community member and provide you a certificate, membership card, and web and app login credentials.
Step 3: A communication channel will be built between you and KMAG Team to collect information about your business, stories that you want to share, offers that you want to throw, and help that you want to seek.
Step 4: You will start receiving relevant knowledge and information in the app and web in a form of a newsletter.
Step 5: Participate in different offline and online activities organized by KMAG and other community members as part of building networks and bonding.
This way, KMAG plans to work as your media partner, messenger, content creator, and leader to lead the community, protect the community, and promote the community. To put it simply, you focus on your business and leave the rest up to us. We can do all that only when you all come together.
HOW MUCH IS THE SUBSCRIPTION FEE?
For now, we have set a very nominal fee at just Rs. 5000 per year, which is like 2 plates of momos in a month.
WHY JOIN THE COMMUNITY?
- Because you believe that you can only grow in business if you are well aware of the sector and industry and the best way to learn about your own sector and industry is by being part of the community that provides relevant knowledge and information related to the industry and sector.
- Because you don’t know how to talk about your own businesses and stories and you are looking for someone as a media partner who could do that for you.
- You have complaints and grievances against many out there, and the practices and you are looking for a platform where you could talk about it without hurting your own brand and status.
- Because you want to be part of a bigger circle which can help you connect with people that matter to you.
- Because you want to be endorsed, recognized and promoted and protected by a reputed group.
- Last but not the least, you strongly believe that humans are better together and in synergy, wonder happens.
LOVED THE IDEA?
If you got the idea and loving it, and want to be part of the community that we are building, please CLICK HERE TO APPLY for the membership, and we will visit you to explain further and get you onboard.
KMAG App: Frequently Asked Questions
What is KMAG App?
KMAG, aka Knowledge Magazine, is a subscription-based digital content distribution platform, which distributes informative and educational content, along with entertaining and recreational content, to its users according to their need and interest.
Is it a free app?
No. It is a subscription-based content platform that users have to buy subscription to access the content.
Is it ad-free?
How is KMAG different from social media or other user-generated content platforms?
KMAG functions like a traditional media with its own editor-board, which works as a gatekeeper between content creators and KMAG users, that every content that goes to KMAG users will be first reviewed, fact-checked, and all the needful checks to ensure that KMAG users are not misinformed or misguided. Also, since we are not an advertisement platform, we don’t push ads nor trade users’ data with advertisers. Simply put, we are a media-like content platform with no ads, that sustains over subscription revenue.
Who are the content creators for KMAG?
Our content creators are educators, intellects, experts and experienced individuals with a passion of sharing their knowledge and information or perspectives to others.
What types of content are available on KMAG?
For now, we cover, readable content (Read), video content (Watch), graphical content (Scroll), along with a discussion forum (Discuss).
How does KMAG know its users’ interests and preferences?
While signing up, users choose their field of interest from all the available interests options we have set. Once the user gets inside the app, they will get to tailor their own taste and preferences to narrow down the options further. This way, users will eventually be seeing only what should matter to them.
What is Referral Code?
Every user has a unique ID that can be viewed in their profile under the “Referral Code.” Users can ask their friends to use the code while signing up to KMAG, so the user can earn a reward point from KMAG. Our plan is to turn the function into a virtual currency that can be used for various transactions and activities within our app.
Why is there no “Free Trial” for a first-time user?
KMAG is a very new product, and it’s obvious that people would want to know what it offers before they buy the subscription. We have our own reason to force a subscription. It has to do with our business model and business logic.
We have divided our users into 3 types:
- Believers: Who believe KMAG and/or content creator/team associated with the KMAG, who don’t care what’s inside. They just want to get in as an act of support by taking the leap of faith.
- Prosumers: Who wants to see what’s inside KMAG App, and after exploring, would want to decide whether to buy or not.
- Consumers: Who have heard a lot about KMAG and also want to get in.
Believers include fans and followers, friends and family, and early adopters. Prosumers and consumers are strangers and skeptics.
For now, we have launched the product for believers. The content business has “chicken and egg” problem. Until there is no good content, there won’t be an audience. Until there is no audience, you can’t produce good content. So to begin with, in first phase, we want to onboard believers who don’t come for content but for regards to the idea and cause. We plan to get around 1000 believers, through whom we will be raising 20 lakhs Nepalese rupees that we will be investing in the content.
Once we have good enough content, we will be working towards onboarding prosumers. This second phase will come with the trial. The actual test will happen here. Once we pass the test, we believe consumers will be naturally onboarded.
So, you can call it the “bootstrapping” approach we are taking in this first phase of launch focusing on believers. If you are not the believer, you can wait for some time. Once we are ready for the prosumer level, you will be notified and you can try out “trial” and see what we have to offer.
What are the benefits of becoming “Believer?”
The following are the benefits:
- Believers get to witness evolution of this app and business model, which will be a great learning for those interested to see how an idea evolves into a giant company.
- Believers will be the first one to test and try every new feature and concept that we would be incorporating in the app.
- Believers will be recognised as the most-valued users and will be given the privileged status.
- Believers will be rewarded in the future as we grow.
- Believers will be our preferred individuals in our team and partnership building as we grow.
Is there way users can earn money through KMAG?
We believe in “share your gains to grow,” as per which we have a monetization policy for our users to earn money through us. For now, users can earn money in following ways:
- Referral: All the users have their own referral code that can be viewed in the profile section. By asking friends and circles to download the app using the referral code will earn the user money. For now, we are rewarding 20% of the subscription amount to the user, which means for every Rs. 300 we earn, we giving back Rs. 60 to the user through whom we earned the new subscriber.
- Content: Users can contribute their original content and we will pay a justifiable amount in return. Content can be article, video, photographs, graphical content, or even quality comments.
Note: For now, the monetisation offer is available only for resident of Nepal.
KMAG App: What it is and who it is for
KMAG App is now available on the Playstore for android users. Hope in a week’s time, it will be available for iOS users as well. It’s an ad-free paid app that users can buy monthly, quarterly, bi-annually, or annually subscription to avail the service.
In the age of Internet and social media and other content platform flooded with free content, the obvious question everyone may wonder “who will pay for content in this world with free content everywhere?” Money Heist isn’t free content, lots of movies and arts are not free content, many research papers and writings are not free content, and lots of sounds and images are not free content. So, the truth is, internet world is divided between, free content and paid content. We chose to walk the road to paid content. We are strongly against ad-based content platforms and nor fond of unchecked user-generated content platforms. The reason is explained HERE. (https://www.kmagz.com/kmag-app-a-solution-to-a-modern-problem/)
Back to the question – who will pay for the content?
There is this guy named Surjay Gurung, currently working in Dubai. He has his wife and son back in Nepal and retired parents. He spent his early life in India as his parents used to work there. I don’t know much about his life but I can tell he is a man who wants to level up his life, for himself and for his child. Somehow he landed up in Dubai like many working-class heroes. With his honesty and the right attitude, he did well and started earning decent money. His aspiration to have a better life got him on the road to self-educating on investment, life, values, and so on. He is a great admirer of KMAG and takes things, we say, seriously. The KMAG audience fascinates him – the educated urban youth. He never got the chance to live that life. Maybe he wants that life for his child. He sometimes call me to take advice on investment and other parts of his life. He likes to call me his mentor.
My wife, she spends most of her time on insta videos and tiktok in her spare time. I sometimes tell her, “instead of all these useless things, it would be better if you watch something that actually helps you in your personal and professional growth.” She often responds with “tell me then what to watch.” She wants to be recommended books and articles and videos to watch. Like her, I have met dozens of people, who are interested to spend their spare time on useful content but they themselves don’t know what is useful and what is not in the ocean of the internet.
The other day, a young mother was complaining about her child wasting his time on his mobile. It’s not that she has a problem with him using his mobile. She has a problem with him wasting his time over useless content. Her saying was “at least could make use of the internet for his own study and growth…wish there were as such platform.”
In the time like the MCC debate, we get lots of messages from people asking us to write an explanatory article on the issue. We also get lots of messages from people asking about what to do with their personal issues, sometimes regarding relationships, sometimes regarding education/career.
Those are just few examples of reality outside the internet world. There are thousands and thousands of people who have the internet at home, mobile in hand but because of lack of motivation or lack of timing or clues, often get lost over mountains of content. KMAG App is for such people.
KMAG, which we call a digital knowledge magazine, is a content distribution platform for its users according to their interests. People like Surjay can get to read, watch, view, or discuss on things like investment through KMAG App. People like my wife can read, watch, view, or discuss over things that would help her to learn or understand things of her interest through KMAG App. People like the young mother can enroll her child to learn only good things through KMAG App. In a time like MCC, people get to understand the issue as it is instating of researching on their own. Those people who would message us seeking for advice and answer don’t have to reach out to our inbox because KMAG App is here to regularly feed them what they need to know.
The question comes – will they pay?
Honest answer, we don’t know. But we know, people didn’t pay for internet either, people didn’t pay for education either, people didn’t pay for water either. But over the time, they started paying because they started realizing the importance of or they started to feel “better to pay and get things at ease than struggle for.” So any new idea starts from a handful of people who would understand the essence and significance of such service or from the people, who pay because they can. You don’t have to pay 300 rupees for momo but some do anyway because they can. You don’t have to pay for bottled water but still some do, because they can. You don’t need to subscribe to Netflix when can borrow from a friend, but some do because they can.
So basically, for now, we are not for everybody and it’s okay with us, coz Netflix neither came to serve everyone. They started as a DVD delivery company for those who can. They were not for people who could walk into a store and buy/rent DVD.
What we know is, our success lies on our ability to help people grow personally and professionally through us; help people learn and understand things that they otherwise would not know; ease people’s life in getting right information and knowledge through us. That will be our focus for now trying out within the people who trust us, who believe us, and who can pay the subscription fee for our attempt to help them get informed, get smart, get connected with like-minded all KMAG App. If we prove ourselves to be the solution that the modern world is desperately looking for, I am sure we will become a household name.
Our journey has just begun after years of experimenting and exploring and learning from Facebook page with believers and supporters by our side. Wish us all the best.
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