Eminent historian, researcher and scholar Mahesh Chandra Regmi died Wednesday at age 74. He leaves behind a copious body of work which includes 14 books and scholarly works. Regmi's Land Tenure and Taxation in Nepal was published in four volumes by UC Berkeley between 1963-68. A Study in Nepali Economic History 1768-1846, detailing the agrarian basis of Nepali society during unification, appeared in 1971. In 1976, Regmi published his seminal work, Landownership in Nepal. He also launched and successfully ran the weekly Nepal Press Digest, which became a journal of contemporary reporting.
For his contribution to historical research and journalism, Regmi was awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 1977, becoming the first Nepali to win the prestigious award. The Magsaysay citation said he was recognised for "chronicling of Nepal's past and present, enabling his people to discover their origins and delineating national options". Regmi graduated from Kathmandu's Tri-Chandra College in 1948 and served in the government from 1951-62 and left to devote full time to research.
His last public appearance was at the Conference on Inclusion in Nepali Democracy in May during which Harka Gurung delivered the annual Mahesh Chandra Regmi Lecture.