Royal Madness

BY AMEET DHAKAL

Three events that took place in three different districts in Nepal on Wednesday reflect the bizarre status and tragedy of Nepali politics.

King Gyanendra, accompanied by Queen Komal and surrounded by army men, busied himself in a state-orchestrated road show in Bhairawa. Protected by an umbrella held by security men to ward off the sweltering heat, the king signed autographs for school children while the queen looked on, her lips poised between a smile and curiosity.

In Kathmandu, things were diametrically opposite: It was open repression in the street. Journalists, lawyers, professors, doctors, engineers and political activists, merely exercising their civil and political rights, were brutally suppressed. Professionals were put under detention for a day without food and water; leaders were arrested from their houses in early morning raids; and students were kicked and baton-charged.

Late in the evening, the Maoist rebels launched yet another daring attack at a district headquarter, the second since they called off their unilateral ceasefire in early January. Malangawa, the district headquarters of Sarlahi was ravaged; about two dozen were killed and another two dozen police personnel, along with the CDO, abducted. The RNA men from the nearby Nawalpur barrack did not (possibly could not) manage to come to rescue the cops.

According to the RNA, a night-vision chopper that went to bomb the fighting rebels crashed, (gunned down according to rebels), killing all aboard, including the two pilots. One of the pilots who died, Major Subash Rai, was my classmate at Ananda Kuti Vidyapeeth, back in the mid-eighties. After hearing of his death, memories of our shared past came alive; his face flashing in front of my eyes every five minutes.

The Bhairawa road show, the repression in Kathmandu and the chopper crash in Malangawa are all intricately linked to the tapestry of our complex and unresolved polity. At the centre of this complicated polity is King Gyanendra.

The king seized power on February One, 2005, promising to put an end to the conflict and restore normalcy. One-and-a-half years have passed since he took the plunge. I wonder what he thinks when he looks back. For most of us, things have only gotten worse for the monarchy and the nation, to say the least.

Today, the rebels feel vindicated in their claim that monarchy is the main obstacle to peace and democracy. Their firepower has increased. The war that was confined to the rugged terrains of Nepal has spread to the plains of the Terai. I remember an international security expert’s comment that ‘you may bring the best of counter-insurgency forces from anywhere in the world and still you can’t defeat insurgency in Nepal’s rugged terrain.’ But the terrain no more seems to be the issue here. In the last two months, the rebels have struck in Nepalgunj, Dhangadi, Guleriya, Nawalparasi, Malangwa, Dharan, Birtamod -they can virtually hit anywhere along the highway.

Earlier, it was assumed that the rebels had an advantage only in the hilly districts since enforcement could not come over land. Now even that myth has been amply shattered. Army enforcement didn’t come in any of the above mentioned clashes though in each case, there was an army barracks nearby. If that’s how the army operates, the rebels will find it easy to choose the modus operandi of their attacks: Engage the military inside the barrack and massacre the ill-trained and ill-equipped policemen guarding district headquarters and ravage the headquarters. This means, the rebels can practically destroy any district headquarters they choose.

This, however, doesn’t mean that they have the capacity to overrun the state. Nor has the RNA the capacity to wipe out the rebels. This reality has been told by many people, for many times in many forums. Even the Maoist rebels and the RNA top brass have publicly admitted that there is no military victory. But the tragedy is, they have been fighting even after admitting the reality, and will continue to do so. The King’s roadmap — post-February one- is to finish them. That is why it is wrong-headed and has taken the monarchy to the brink.

I was awe-struck by a recent survey published in Himal Khabar Patrika, a reputed fortnightly magazine. When asked who they blame the most for the current state of the country, what the majority said was the king. During a similar survey by the magazine a few years back, they had pointed fingers at the political parties.

In a constitutional monarchy, political parties act as a buffer between the monarchy and any possible threat to it. Blind like a bat to his own interest, the king removed that buffer and exposed himself to the danger he failed to see. With political parties off the hot seat, the spotlight has shifted.

Now there is a slippery road ahead for the monarchy: As this war drags on, more and more people will think that the war is being fought just because of one person, or one family. Then, finally one day, the people will ready themselves to trade that person and that family, for peace. In royal

madness, surrounded by sycophants and security men, it’s easy to miss what is happening. But when it happens, it will be the end of a dynasty.

As published in today’s The Kathmandu Post. The author can be reached at ameet-at-kantipur.com.np .

Published by UWB

Pioneering blog from Nepal...since 2004.

25 thoughts on “Royal Madness

  1. We have very few SPA and Maoists supporters on the blog today. Out protesting for your masters? Expecting cushy paybacks when back in power or just payback time for the cushy 1990’s era? Well it has begun to rain, so you’ll probably head back to your computers? Must be a relief (the rain), when you are coerced to do things which you yourselves cant quite grasp entirely, and when so many games are afoot from so many different players.
    Awaiting your torrential bite back.

  2. cs,
    yes, we are out in the street protesting for the grandeur of freedom, not grandeur of palace like you are deluded,
    we have decided to burn down everything,
    a little loss but what the heck, we will rebuild them later,
    if you happen to be a royalist,
    your house is not safe,
    remember how we burnt down Sarad Chandra Shah’s house at Pipal Ko Bot, Dillibazar, last time around?
    We will repeat that pyro-act more widely and sweepingly with more intensity to make sure we do not miss houses like yours

  3. G-Hangman,
    How’s it hanging? Had a good day? Hurled a few bricks, broke some window panes, burned a few tires, had a bon fire. A nice, entertaining day was it?
    Now your back on your computer. Call yourself educated?
    Yes. I remember how Sarad Shah’s house was burn? Well, now he is back kicking your asses double time. You better wish he does not remember your face.
    As for my house, well good luck, and make sure you wear a bullet proof vest, I dont restrain myself like the cops out on the streets today.

  4. hey yo slaves
    so in the rain you are sitting in front of your computer eating the bones provided by your master..what always wonders me is the baseless barks you bark against anything you see is in favour of aandolan…your matris especially the that shah guy….the way he speaks and the things he speaks just show the condition of your great royal dogs…so usually it’s baseless and pointless to argue with you..coz you are always crying like kamal thapa does…and the only way yo make someone cry to stop doing is either by shouting out loud or by giving something they desire…we won’t give out our freedom to you just becoz you cry…we will shout louder so u will stop or either run away with fear..and lastly to you accusation that there are less supporter of parties and maoist…..well it’s becoz most of them are tired of fruitless puruist to change your slavery loving mind and have stopped wrting coz it’s like saying the matter of fact sheet to a donkey so he might do good…or either they are already out coz they are not like u who just write here and go out in some restaurant with your mobile on bike with a girl at back……they do aandolan in every aspect and for now the aandolan in the street is important then the aandolan in the net….they are not gone coz they are tired or they gave up……they never give up….they do not live a life of hypocrisy….and do not again mention the leaders coz i am not talking about no old shit leaders….it’s not about leaders…it’s about freedom and our basic right…..which u shall never understand as you already are a slave of your self imposed hatred against democracy…….due to some so called leaders

  5. Hey:
    Good article but why this double standard. WHose blog is this? It is just useless to post TKP article here in the blog. You don’t need to capture the spaces as much as you like! It is like the politicians!

  6. cs, yes we need gun culture one like US has. these communists now and then have been vandalizing the property and guns are only thing that we can keep our property safe–shoot them when they come for you and your property.

  7. G-hangman, If you hooligans want to help yourself resort to violence, go ahead and take guns and play the political psychologoy with people’s war. Don’t you fools know how the country is in brutal state due to the coercion of both the maoist insurgency and the state’s brutal force? Why don’t to start first by burning down your own house and set ablaze the what little the country has left with its resource?
    Pawan, with these hooligans trying to hunt down any one who defies their stand ,yes people need guns to protect them selves. All the hooligan leaders behind these violence should be arrested and sent to barracks and beaten severely.

  8. cs and pawan, I know what you all think your “my house” is, or “was” to be frank, you are cornered and are squealing like a cat in the corner of your last “bedroom”, and dont mistake “US” for “belayeet” either, to be thinking the Maoists are vandalizing still “your” property.

    Laters.

  9. Face it, the Maoists are even more deadly than they ever were, and every time our fool of a ‘King’ keeps saying ‘oh they’re reduced to petty crimes’ when they have the capacity to bring down helicopters, he’s going to look more and more like the idiot that he is.

    U.S State Department Spokesman has said so himself. He didn’t call him an ‘idiot’ but he called him the biggest obstacle to peace. Whatever. Its saying the same thing.

    Goddman it, Gyanendra, stop pretending like you know what’s going on and get your stupid ass out of politics. Its not for you. Go and relax in your palace and play with your retard son and whatever.

  10. Fidel
    your mother is a ho-ligan
    a couple of kinds I see here
    some are like KG’s sons
    some are ex-Pancha putras
    some are like George Bush
    But remember if KG is facing political impeachment
    George Bush is awaiting for senatorial impeachment
    we the people will punish those who have been cheated and looted by the like of yours
    it is easy to talk in the net
    come to the street if you have guts, royal money
    I will be in between Maitidevi and the Putali Sadak and Bagh Bazar
    I will show you people power

  11. I would like to first how much you are paid to bombard these websites with your royalist view? If want further reasons to not to have Monarchy just not Gyanendra visit:

    (link.)

    Fight for democracy, human rights and freedom.

  12. Go to hearts and minds of people. Educate them acknowledge them. Empower them with information they need while it is resources they need at this stage. Showing off people’s power through violence like the maoists and you hooligans are nothing more than cowardice. Look at the street children in between maitidevi and Putali sadak and try to help atleast one instead of reverberating of always being cheated and looted.

  13. “Look at the street children in between maitidevi and Putali sadak”

    Exactly the outcome of what you and KG croonies have led this country to, even after all these years. Thats what you are good at, asking others for help while you are busy stuffing into your greedy vices. Just wait to be shackled, they are a’ comin’ to strip you of your amasses and give them back to the street kids, where it actually belongs, it’s been a long time coming.

    Laters

  14. राजतन्त्रमा‌‍ –
    राजाको काम छोडी कामिको जात्रा

    लोकतन्त्रमा-
    कामिको काम छोडी राजा को जात्रा ?

  15. ????????????? –
    ?????? ??? ???? ?????? ??????

    ???????????-
    ?????? ??? ???? ???? ?? ?????? ?

  16. Laters,
    thanks for your support for the street,
    we have chased off all the KG’s men from the strret
    we need to chase off the like of Fidel even from the net,
    thanks, Laters, again

  17. We need an economics dictator like Lee Kwan of Singapore to run the country. You guys are fighting for nothing. Royal government is no more loyal government. We have seen performance of Nepal Communist Party and Congressies time and again. Now, since all of you guys are jobless, you are desperate. This andolan of today is not a war for “ideology” unlike what you guys want to believe, but war for a piece of “bone”. Wake up you guys. Start working hard and think every day wasted is money lost. Make yourself rich, then you will be able to contribute your fellow men on the street “provided”. That’s the contribution you need. When you and your countrymen have food on the plate, then think who should rule you.

  18. So you people who are on street protesting believe you are fighting for democracy. While people dont realize they are supporting failed leaders. Same netas who have failed us again and again and again. If people cant read the fine line, then they are no different than Girja annd Deuba who have become PM 3times and taken country in the wrong turn. What do we got after all these years? Same pathetic heads of parties. No way I will support them until I see new faces.

  19. In 1990, it was only the house of Sharad Chandra Shah burnt and all Panches were spared because of Girija’s mistake, ” rajako pani jeet, janta ko pani jeet, panchha ko pani jeet, prajatantrabadi ko pani jeet”
    This time Girija must have got lesson and demonstrators would spare neither king nor any royalists. The findings of Mallik Commission has to be re-opened and all the responsibles have to be hung till death.

  20. Thumbs Up Ameet! It was nice reading your article.

    I have nothing to say about your article, it was a real good piece of writing. I am interested in commenting on the comments.

    Criticizing politicians for their past mistakes is considered chic, especially by the so called ‘young generation’ city elites who think they are too smart to support the Nepalese leaders. When they are able to spare some time while downloading the midnight hot shows from ftv.com or after a day-long service at an Indian restaurant in LA, they enter the blog and try to show how smarter they are than the average Nepalese politicians. They think corrption and wrongdoing of the Nepalese leaders have pushed this country this far in the chaos and conflit.

    This is nonsense.

    These people will perhaps never understand the harms done by king Gyanendra’s autocracy for this country and her people. The stupid ambition of this king has ruined our economy, social order, national image, bureaucracy, free media, individual liberty, human rights- the list goes on. The so called city elites (the petty service providers who wish to call themselves NRNs)will never understand that a corrupt and stupid leader is hundred times better than a crazy king.

    Nepalese people, especially those who are relatively poor, less educated and powerless are more conscious and intelligent than the so called city elites who appear in this blog to curse the Nepalese politicians. The ordinary Nepalese people know what democracy is and why they need it. They know how the king is fooling people through is artless deception. They know what they achieved in the period after democracy was restored. That is why they are struggling to establish democracy in the country.

    Those who argue for selecting an economist for the post of prime minister (like Lee Kwan?) are well fed pigs. They possess neither intelligence nor wisdom.

  21. Pingback: vicodin

Comments are closed.