BY PREM DHAKAL
The ongoing movement against autocracy has been throwing out several awkward questions all the while even as it is making certain things, like the cruel intentions of chairman Gyanendra, clearer.
The most irksome question has been the one regarding the sanctity of our security persons, if they can still be called so. Our some 200,000 strong royal force has in the past 15 days, time and again pushed the limit of its brutality to such extreme that even Hitler must be feeling embarrassed in his grave having been upstaged, in Nepal of all places.
There has always been skepticism about the rationality in keeping such a big army, the less we say about the corrupt police force the better. The critics point out that the army has been obsolete especially after warding off the threat of British colonialism some 200 years ago. The critics argue that the army has been a puppet in the hands of ambitious despots who have been pulling the strings for their personal gains.
Such unshakable has been the loyalty of this army that the clan of the tyrant has not made any difference in its functioning. It has carried out the orders with the same clinical efficiency be it while limiting the Shah kings to the confines of their palaces as per the wish of Ranas or orchestrating coups for the Shah kings.
And if you thought that its role (?) in the Royal Massacre – when the late King Birendra, guarded by about 10,000 of the best army men in his palace, was wiped out along with his family leaving Gyanendra’s family surprisingly unscathed – would really take the cake, you hadn’t reckoned with their gallantry in dealing with the common people.
The unified command, as the motley band of coward thugs is called, is losing its sanity even as the ongoing movement is approaching crescendo. The incompetent policemen who wet their undergarments on being confronted with the Maoists, seem to have found a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of redeeming their image.
The bravery of the persons – who cannot lift a gun, let alone pull the trigger against the armed Maoists – has to be seen to be believed. They show amazing dexterity in raining batons invariably finding the head if not the eyes of the protestors with the sticks and their flying kicks on the injured must be giving Jackie Chan a complex.
And their accuracy in getting the top half of the agitators’ body with the bullets will never be matched by the police force of any country. If only the Maoists had not wielded guns while attacking the police posts…
The mass shooting of the peaceful demonstrators in Chandragadhi, Jhapa has dashed even the faintest of hopes that the army, known for its legendary discipline, would be rational and show restraint.
It’s really amazing, how a few months of training can play havoc with all the human values instilled right from the day of birth. Or has the army found the human genes of the Stone Age for cloning?
It is high time the political leaders started to think about civilizing the army and not merely dwell upon controlling the army after the eventual end of the autocratic monarchy. The people can no longer afford to spend billions to be shot upon and looted by these goons.