Khumjung may be a victim of its own progress. Government authorities openly admit that Khumjung does not deserve a 30% share tourism revenue because it is already benefiting from Hillary’s projects.
Krishna Prasad Sapkota, Chief of Solu Khumbu District Coordination Committee, says: “Villages like Khumjung may not get 30% of the revenue because other underdeveloped villages need more tourism budget.”
After the three tiers of elections last year, National Natural Resources and Fiscal Commission has proposed allocating 50% of the revenue to the Centre and 25% each to provincial and local governments. But people in Khumjung are suspicious, and wonder if they will get even 25%.
Khumjung is reputed as a village of mountaineers including Ang Rita Sherpa who climbed the Everest without oxygen 10 times, Appa Sherpa and Phurba Tashi Shrepa both climbed the Everest 21 times. Their world record for most summits was broken by Kami Rita Sherpa, who reached the top of the world a record 22nd time this season.
All these legendary Sherpas are from Khumjung, but this fabled village of mountaineers is no longer satisfied with just glory. Ngim Dorjee Sherpa, who was elected Khumjung village council Chair last year, says: “We need what we deserve, and I think they will not listen to us unless we make a really loud noise.”
All photos: Ajit Baral