Kathmandu Class 9 CBSE English Best Chapter 10 ExplanationAndMeaning

Kathmandu Class 9 CBSE English Beehive Lesson 10 Description Notes:

Kathmandu CBSE Class 9 English Beehive Study – Detailed description of the ‘Kathmandu’ lesson and definitions of difficult words. Also, the description is followed by a summary of the lesson. All exercises and Questions and Answers provided after the lesson have been included.
Author Vikram Seth travelled from China to India for the Tibetan and Nepal strikes and wrote about it in his book ‘Lake Lake’. In this quote from the book, we know about his visit to Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal.

Kathmandu Class 9 CBSE English Lesson and Definition in Book:

Do you like travelling? The writer, Vikram Seth, enjoys it very much. In his book, Heaven Lake, he describes a long journey from China to India, via Tibet and Nepal.
• Have you heard of places like Ajmer Sharif, Madurai, Sanchi, Varanasi, Sarnath, or Halebid? Can you name some other
places like these?
• What do the surroundings of a holy place in your city look like? Think about it as you read Vikram Seth’s description of Kathmandu.

I GET a cheap room in the centre of town and sleep for hours. The next morning, with Mr Shah’s son and nephew, I visit the two temples in Kathmandu that are most sacred to Hindus and Buddhists.

At Pashupatinath (outside which a sign proclaims ‘Entrance for the Hindus only’) there is an atmosphere of ‘febrile confusion’. Priests, hawkers, devotees, tourists, cows, monkeys, pigeons and dogs roam through the grounds. We offer a few flowers.

There are so many worshippers that some people trying to get the priest’s attention are elbowed aside by others pushing their way to the front. A princess of the Nepalese royal house appears; everyone bows and makes way. By the main gate, a party of saffron-clad Westerners struggle for permission to enter.

The policeman is not convinced that they are ‘the Hindus’ (only Hindus are allowed to enter the temple). A fight breaks out between two monkeys.


One chases the other, who jumps onto a shiva linga, then runs screaming around the temples and down to the river, the holy Bagmati, that flows below. A corpse is being cremated on its banks; washerwomen are at their work and children bathe.

From a balcony a basket of flowers and leaves, old offerings now wilted, is dropped into the river. A small shrine half protrudes from the stone platform on the river bank. When it emerges fully, the goddess inside will escape, and the evil period of the Kaliyug will end on earth.


At the Boudhanath stupa, the Buddhist shrine of Kathmandu, there is, in contrast, a sense of stillness. Its immense white dome is ringed by a road. Small shops stand on its outer edge: many of these are owned by Tibetan immigrants; felt bags, Tibetan prints and silver jewellery can be bought here. There are no crowds: this is a haven of quietness in the busy streets around.

Kathmandu is vivid, mercenary, religious, with small shrines to flower-adorned deities along with the narrowest and busiest streets; with fruit sellers, flute sellers, hawkers of postcards; shops selling Western cosmetics, film rolls and chocolate; or copper utensils and Nepalese antiques.


Film songs blare out from the radios, car horns sound, bicycle bells ring, stray cows low questioningly at motorcycles, vendors shout out their wares.

I indulge myself mindlessly: buy a bar of marzipan, a corn-on-the-cob roasted in a charcoal brazier on the pavement (rubbed with salt, chilli powder and lemon); a couple of love story comics, and even a Reader’s Digest. All this I wash down with Coca Cola and a nauseating orange drink and feel much the better for it.

I consider what route I should take back home. If I were propelled by enthusiasm for travel per see, I would go by bus and train to Patna, then sail up the Ganges past Benaras to Allahabad, then up the Yamuna, past Agra to Delhi.

But I am too exhausted and homesick; today is the last day of August. Go home, I tell myself: move directly towards home. I enter a Nepal Airlines office and buy a ticket for tomorrow’s flight.

I look at the flute seller standing in a corner of the square near the hotel. In his hand is a pole with an attachment at the top from which fifty or sixty bansuris protrude in all directions, like the quills of a porcupine. They are of bamboo: there are crossflutes and recorders.

From time to time he stands the pole on the ground, selects a flute and plays for a few minutes. The sound rises clearly above the noise of the traffic and the hawkers’ cries. He plays slowly, meditatively, without excessive display.

He does not shout out his wares. Occasionally he makes a sale, but in a curiously offhanded way as if this were incidental to his enterprise. Sometimes he breaks off playing to talk to the fruit seller. I imagine that this has been the pattern of his life for years.

I find it difficult to tear myself away from the square. Flute music always does this to me: it is at once the most universal and most particular of sounds. There is no culture that does not have its flute the reed neh, the recorder, the Japanese shakuhachi, the deep bansuri of Hindustani classical music, the clear or breathy flutes of South America, the high-pitched Chinese flutes.

Each has its specific fingering and compass. It weaves its own associations. Yet to hear any flute is, it seems to me, to be drawn into the commonality of all mankind, to be moved by music closest in its phrases and sentences to the human voice. Its motive force too is living breath: it too needs to pause and breathe before it can go on.

That I can be so affected by a few familiar phrases on the bansuri, surprises me at first, for on the previous occasions that I have returned home after a long absence abroad, I have hardly noticed such details and certainly have not invested them with the significance I now do.


Other Researchers:

Question and Answers

Q.1) On the following map mark out the route, which the author thought of but did not take, to Delhi.


Ans: The lines are indicated by a dotted line

Kathmandu travels to Patna by bus and train
Patna to Allaha bad for boat / Ganges
Allahabad goes to Delhi by boat / Yamuna

Q. 2) Find out the possible routes (by rail, road or air) from Kathmandu to New Delhi/ Mumbai/Kolkata/Chennai.
Ans: Experiment yourself. Students can take the Atlas of the country and see or experience the wind, the road routes from Kathmandu to New Delhi / Mumbai / Kolkata / Chennai.
Other possible routes are:
By road_
Kathmandu – Viratnagar – Patna
Kathmandu – Nepalganj – Gorakhpur
By train
Patna – Delhi
Gorakhpur – Delhi
Patna – Kolkata
Gorakhpur – Varanasi – Kolkata
Patna – Mumbai
Gorakhpur – Allahabad – Mumbai

A) Answer these questions in one or two words or in short phrases.

Q.i) Name the two temples the author visited in Kathmandu.

Ans: Pashupatinath and Boudhanath Stupa.

Q.ii) The writer says, “All this I wash down with Coca Cola.” What does ‘all this’ refer to?

Ans: Com-on-the-cob and Marzipan.

Q.iii) What does Vikram Seth compare to the quills of a porcupine?

Ans: The flutes are tied on the top of the flute seller’s pole.

Q.iv) Name five kinds of flutes.

Ans: Reed neh, recorder, Japanese shakuhachi, deep bansuri, South American respiratory flute, high Chinese flute

B) Answer each question in a short paragraph.

Q. 1) What difference does the author note between the flute seller and the other hawkers?

Ans: The author finds a difference in selling articles. The flute salesman does not announce his goods. He makes a surprisingly curious sale as if this were a threat to his business.

Q. 2) What is the belief at Pashupatinath about the end of Kaliyug?

Ans: People believe that when the small temple emerges completely from the Bhagwati River, the goddess inside will escape, and the evil time of Kalyug will end on earth.

Q. 3) The author has drawn powerful images and pictures. Pick out three examples each of

I) the atmosphere of ‘febrile confusion outside the temple of Pashupatinath (for example some people trying to get the priest’s attention are elbowed aside…)

Ans: The author describes monkey warfare clearly and clearly. A fight ensues between the two monkeys. One chase after the other jumps on the shiva linga then run screaming around the temples and descend into the river.

II) the things he sees

Ans: The author looks at the princess of the Nepalese palace. Everyone bows down to him. He sees monkeys. He sees fancy bags, Tibetan inscriptions, and silver jewellery. He looks for flute vendors, cardboard dealers, western cosmetics stores, etc.

III) the sounds he hears

Ans: You hear movie songs on the radio, car horns, bicycle bells, stray cows on the ground and vendors shouting their stuff. You also listen to the various flutes played by the flute vendor.

C) Answer the following questions in not more than 100–150 words each.

Q.1) Compare and contrast the atmosphere in and around the Baudhnath shrine with the Pashupatinath temple.

Ans: In Pashupatinath, there is a state of ‘slight confusion’. Priests, merchants, devotees, visitors, cattle, monkeys, pigeons and dogs roam the grounds. There are so many worshipers that some people who are trying to get the priest’s attention are distracted by others and are pushing their way forward. At Boudhanath stupa, a Buddhist temple in Kathmandu, there is a sense of peace. Its large white dome is tied to the road. Small shops are located on the outer edge. Many shops are Tibetan immigrants. There are no crowds and this is a quiet place on the busy streets around.

Q.2) How does the author describe Kathmandu’s busiest streets?

Ans: The author says that Kathmandu is clear, stubborn, religious, with small places of worship adorned with flowers on narrow streets and very busy streets. There are fruit vendors, flute vendors, postcard retailers, western cosmetics stores, film rolls and chocolates or brass vessels and Nepali antiquities. Movie songs are played loudly on the radio, the sound of car horns, the sound of bicycle bells, the wayward cattle on the ground, the salesmen shouting their wares. The author buys a com-on-the-cob roasted on a brazier on the pavement. She also buys coca-cola and an orange drink.

Q.3) “To hear any flute is to be drawn into the commonality of all mankind.” Why does the author say this?

Ans: The author says this because he knows that music attracts the senses. It gives joy to all in the audience. Flute dealer does not sell just one type of flute. You have different types of flutes that represent different cultures and traditions. The flute salesman is a clever salesman. He does not call out his goods. You play songs that attract others. Mankind does not have a variety of appearance and form. It is universal and cosmopolitan. Music softens everyone’s heart regardless of genre, colour and belief. The author, therefore, argues that hearing any flute should be drawn to something common to all mankind.

Thinking about Language:

Q.1) Read the following sentences carefully to understand the meaning of the italicised phrases. Then match the phrasal verbs in Column A with their meanings in Column B.

1. A communal war broke out when the princess was abducted by the neighbouring prince.
2. The cockpit broke off from the plane during the plane crash.
3. The car broke down on the way and we were left stranded in the jungle.
4. The dacoit broke away from the police as they took him to court.
5. The brothers broke up after the death of the father.
6. The thief broke into our house when we were away.

(i) break out(a) to come apart due to force
(ii) break off(b) end a relationship
(iii) break down(c) break and enter illegally; unlawful trespassing
(iv) break away (from someone)(d) of start suddenly, (usually a fight, a war or a disease)
(v) break up(e) to escape from someone’s grip
(vi) break into(f) stop working


(i) break out(d) of start suddenly, (usually a fight, a war or a disease)
(ii) break off(a) to come apart due to force
(iii) break down(f) stop working
(iv) break away (from someone)(e) to escape from someone’s grip
(v) break up(b) end a relationship
(vi) break into(c) break and enter illegally; unlawful trespassing

Q.2) I) Use the suffixes -ion or -tion to form nouns from the following verbs. Make the necessary changes in the spellings of the words. Example: proclaim – proclamation

cremate _____________act ________________exhaust ___________
invent _______________tempt ______________immigrate __________
direct _______________meditate ____________imagine ____________
dislocate _____________associate _____________dedicate ____________


cremate cremationact actionexhaust exhaustion
invent inventiontempt temptationimmigrate immigration
direct directionmeditate meditationimagine imagination
dislocate dislocationassociate associationdedicate dedication

Q. 2) II) Now fill in the blanks with suitable words from the ones that you have formed.

(i) Mass literacy was possible only after the _____________of the printing machine.
(ii) Ramesh is unable to tackle the situation as he lacks_____________.
(iii) I could not resist the_______________ to open the letter.
(iv) Hard work and________________ are the main key to success.
(v) The children were almost fainting with________________after being made to stand in the sun.

Ans: (i) Mass literacy was possible only after the invention of the printing machine.
(ii) Ramesh is unable to tackle the situation as he lacks direction.
(iii) I could not resist the temptation to open the letter.
(iv) Hard work and dedication are the main keys to success.
(v) The children were almost fainting with exhaustion after being made to stand in the sun.


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