Proud new Aussies

AFTER 17 years in a Nepalese refugee camp, life in Moonah is finally very good for Bhutanese family the Khatiwadas.
AT HOME: The Khatiwada family, from left, Keshab, Bhim Bahadu, Laxmi, Dhiren and Swastika, holding her son Anup (Picture courtesy: KIM EISZELE)

Patriarch Bhim Bahadu Khatiwada, wife Laxmi, sons Dhiren and Keshab, daughter-in-law Swastika and grandson Anup, 2, became proud Australians at the Glenorchy Australia Day citizenship ceremony yesterday.

Mr and Mrs Khatiwada spent 17 years in a refugee camp after fleeing Bhutan as political refugees.

Son Keshab was born in the camp.

West Hobart Centacare volunteer Dorelle Lancaster, who has formed a very close relationship with the family, said it was customary for Bhutanese to live together.

“They don’t leave their parents, they get on so well together, they are so happy,” Ms Lancaster said.

Mr Khatiwada and son Dhiren work as carers in nursing homes, Mrs Khatiwada works at the Hotel Grand Chancellor, Swastika, called Swashi, works as an interpreter and Keshab is a college student.

The family has been in Tasmania for three years and is paying off its home and a car.

The family eats Bhutanese food and has no trouble sourcing ingredients.

Dhiren’s favourite things about Tasmania were “the weather and the people”.

Reproduced from The Mercury


  1. Congratulations!
    You have carried your Bhutanese Cultural Identity (as testified in the contents) opposed by the authorities at home denied for being part of it! But this has not become barrier in the FAR AWAY NATION to get what you lost back home in Bhutan, in the consideration of the enlightened people there. Keep faith and be true citizens of that dear country holding her flag high above the ambitious DRAGON.