A Minister Resigns to Play Vote Politics As Tension Continues in Eastern Terai

Members of Armed Police Force (APF) heading towards eastern Terai where demonstrations are happening in the past 11 days. Five buses full of policemen passed from Chitwan. Pic by Dipendra Baduwal

So Hridayesh Tripathi resigned from the Cabinet, huh? Why? This is his version: “The Seven Party Alliance (of which his party Nepal Sadbhabana Party (A) is a member) is not serious enough over the present turmoil in the Terai region. The eight parties (Maoist included) have failed to show the level of seriousness that merits the present situation. Madhesh is moving ahead with its genuine demands regarding the proportional electoral procedure and federal setup, among others. We had issued a note of dissent on the very day the interim constitution was promulgated on 15 January, however, there has been no hearing.”

It might appear that Tripathi is genuinely concerned about the movement that is going on in Terai region but make no mistake he is more worried about losing vote banks than the “genuine demands.” We have rarely seen a minister in Nepal resigning on real issues. Who can forget that Tripathi was until recently fighting within his party to be nominated in the cabinet? Anyway he was suffering from jaundice and was blaming the poor quality of drinking water in his ministry (Commerce, Industry and Supplies). He wasn’t working so his departure shouldn’t come as a blow to the day to day affairs of the government. Nevertheless his outing must be taken seriously by the government in terms of dealing with the politics that is intensifying in Terai. Members of SPA-M are divided over one demand (proportional electoral procedure). Nepali Congress, the party of Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala, has different view on this issue. Nepali Congress might be correct on its stand and the issue must be seriously discussed before taking any decision. But that must happen soon. First, the SPA and Maoists must come up with one voice. Yes they did so in Interim Constitution but it has by now proved that that wasn’t sufficient to address the grievances of people in Terai.

Participants in a peace rally organized by locals in Rani area in Biratnagar. The eastern industrial town remained relatively peaceful today. Pic by Bhim Ghimire

There is no way we can move forward by ignoring the demands of people in Terai. Almost all parties in the region have now expressed their support to the ongoing movement in one way or the other (and in one level or the other). Even Nepali Congress can’t afford to make Teraians angry. Election of Constituent Assembly is near. Popular support is needed. That is why Nepali Congress might have to give up its stand on proportional electoral procedure. While doing so that all parties must safeguard the rights of people living in other parts of the country as well. It is not about wresting ones right and providing that to other. It is about feeling all empowered.

Day 11: Curfews Continue in Four Places

Local administrations across the Terai region today issued fresh curfew orders in four towns as the unrest in southern Nepal continued severely affecting normal life for the 11th consecutive day. The District Administration Offices issued curfew orders in Janakpur, Birgunj, Kalaiya and Gaur today to control the increasing unrest in the southeastern region of the country. Meanwhile, shops and transportation services remained closed for the 11th day running as protests resumed in some parts of the eastern Terai today. In Lahaan where the Madhesi People’s Right Forum (MPRF) first carried out the protests, life seemed to return to normality but markets and shops remained closed. Although Lahan has been comparatively calmer in the past two days, transportation services have not started operating and marketplaces remained closed. Krishna Bahadur Yadav, central member of the MPRF, said that the indefinite banda programme would continue until their demands for a proportional electoral system, federal state and declaration of constituencies based upon the population, among others, are addressed by the government.

In Birgunj, the local administration imposed a nine-hour curfew (10am to 7pm) today again. Likewise, DAO Rautahat also imposed a curfew in Gaur from 9 am to 7 pm. Janakpur remained peaceful today. However, a 10-hour curfew has been imposed by the local administration from 8am to 6pm. Similarly, in Kalaiya of Bara a curfew has been imposed from 8am to 9pm today. Likewise, life was badly affected in Jaleshwor, Mahottari, as the residents were deprived of essential daily goods as the shops remained closed.

Journalists in Hetauda, Makwanpur district, took out a rally protesting vandalism in media houses, threats to journalists in Birjung and other parts of eastern Terai by the activists of organizations that are responsible for the ongoing protests in the region. The district branch of the Federation of Nepali Journalists organized the rally in which participants demanded that the government must fulfill the legitimate demands of people in Terai. They also demanded safety to media persons. Pic by Pratap Bista

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33 thoughts on “A Minister Resigns to Play Vote Politics As Tension Continues in Eastern Terai”

  1. “Participants in a peace rally organized by locals in Rani area in Biratnagar. The eastern industrial town remained relatively peaceful today. Pic by Bhim Ghimire”

    When will political parties grow up and stop using children as connon fodders for their demostrations – whether it be against something or for something – this should be unacceptable…. hey wag-man, you should raise your voice!!

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  2. Yes vote politics. Tripathi fears of losing the poll in Tarai.
    This communal or regional feeling is going to dump him and his sort of attitude out of the paliament.

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  3. So, the govt. is not serious to resolve this issue as Tripathi has also stated. The govt is serious on only those issues on which the Maoists are serious. In a way, Maoists are the tail that wags the dog (SPA). Anyways, I don’t think the Maoists will ever want to yeild to Madhesi’s demands. I think that one of the protest points is that the current division of election constituencies makes 1 pahadi vote equal to 20 madhesi votes. The maoists would like to keep it that way because their strongholds are in the remotest pahads. This is the reason BRB doesn’t want to talk to them.

    It looks like the govt has still not accepted that the protests in Terai are about real issues. Today they have arrested Kamal Thapa. Looks like they are following the process of elimination. That is- rule out the possible answers to find the right answer. If the protests still don’t subside then only the govt will be serious about resolving madhesi’s demands. 5 or 10 more people may have to die before the govt comes to senses. It is a very unfortunate situation. jun jogi aye pani kanai chireko!

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  4. It has been said correctly that our government is only worried about Mr. Prachanda’s demand and thats it. They were so high when 23 protesting people died in april revolution, what happended to them now, already the dead figure has gone in double figures!!! They were blaming royalist that time, now whom should we blame ‘royalist’ or ‘maoist’ or …..???
    The blog writer has written that tripathy gave up ministry post to gain vote but look at the other way …sadhbhawana(A) know as madeshi party raised the terai issue on the very first day of interim constitution…they even called the terai band for that …that time no other party realised that the terai issue was so important now they are giving their solidarity in the movment to just make those terai people feel that they are with them so that their MP post are safe, afterall madhav, girija , sitaula …everyone represent themselves as MP from those terai districts only.

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  5. If one wanna get the right s/he deserves, then s/he has to prove up to it. Right is never offered, it has to be fought for. Now it is up to Madhesis to prove up to it. Maoists had the gun. Gandhi had the dhoti and strategic satyagrah. What do you have? Sitaula is already saying that the tide will die out within a few days. Time to show what you have got, else be ready to be ruled for another 1000 years and enslave your furtutre generations! No guts, no rights – the norms is simple as that in the wake of what Maoists have taught and shown. Who do you think will come to support or even oppose? You hardly have anything more to offer, in addition to what have already been offered: services as Lauhure, chowkidar, gurkha, bhariya, maal in chaklaas, etc…… All major rivers are gone anyway. Hillary took over Tenjing and we beg for foreign aid to clean up the Mount Everest. Foreign diplomats are funneling your wild life, if anything left behind by the Royal family. You will be the last to be cleared from immigration in any country you go to, even after having obtained visa in advance. Discussions on illegal immigration and refugee problem are in the center among non-resident Nepalese. Sounds disgusting and pathetic, is it not? Sorry, but is it not the reality? Totally screwed up………. Cna we wake up ever, ever, ever, ????????

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  6. thats very correct atti. these girija, madav, prachanda….everyone one of them are bloody crooked. they are just waiting to see another terai revolution this time.

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  7. Linking criminals like kamal Thapa and Badri mandal with madheshi uprising is the last nail in the coffin of Madhesh birodhi elements. In such a sensitive issue, government should have come out with the proofs before taking this step. Its insult to whole madhesi community …..Pahare leaders forget that it was a madhesi named Durganand Jha who was first to be hanged for mombing King Mahendra in 2018. Linking whole movement with palace and India is fatal for nepal.

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  8. “Almost all parties in the region have now expressed their support to the ongoing movement in one way or the other (and in one level or the other)”

    – Like what? Saying Madhesi demands are genuine but refusing to act on it is not a form of support. It’s called bull-shi*tting!

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  9. These SPA leaders have shown themselves incompent. They should have nabbed the mandaleys like kamal thapa, badri mandal earlier. Dhilai bhaye pani alikati buddhi palayecha.

    We have problem in Terai (Madhesh to be politically correct), nobody can deny that fact. There are still a large number of genuine Nepali out there who have been deprived of citizenship. Aba kura ayo proportional electorate system ko, but in the current scenario it seems like a chicken and egg problem. If they decide all the constutienties right now, then wouldn’t there be a problem after the number of voters increase? Better way is to have a specific guideline for EC so that it can revise the constutienties based on population percentage.

    If you talk about restructuring state, or whatever you have to have the balls to face people in the CA elections. Dui char jana uphreko bhar ma decision garnu hunna. There are still a lot of problems in Nepal and if we start deciding just because some people are in the streets, then it might give a wrong message. I mean every time you want your rights, you have to break your heads. This thing must end. Aja Terai ko problem ayo. Bholi dalit and janajati ko and parsi mahila haru ko. I mean problems are endless. And some fine day all of us might be in streets demanding the end of load shedding (see how pathetic our planning is!). We might as well be in the streets with our gallons just to protest for not getting water for more than a week. Or maybe someday tired of stinking garbage around our home, we might gather with brooms to clean them. But I know this impulsive way is not the solution. Let us all join hands in this ackward situation and work towards better Nepal.

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  10. It was quite predictable that this blog would see another conspiracy in the resignation of Tripathi and see no fault in the way the SPA-M is dealing (or rather not dealing) with the situation in the Terai. It is not a conincidence either that Kantipur Publications has so far hardly published any pictures of the “atrocities” that the current administration is carrying out while calling the demands legitimate. The SPA=M keeps meeting in Baluawatar, had suspended parliament for two weeks so that they dont have to deal with the situation and has in a la-Deuba round up, raided homes of the royalists after dark (perviously this was a cowardly step when the Royal government had activated the police force in a similar manner after dark) and the leaders of SPA_M has found a new catch phrase now that the demands of the Terai protesters are valid and need to be dealt seriously. But what have they actually done? What is the role of the government here? Why are the Maoists calling the terai dissidents “haisiyat” nabhayeko? And the biasness of Kantipur is coming out thick and fast as it is seen in the way it is reporting (or not reproting) the entire incident. And where are the human rights activists?

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  11. Long Live the JTTM, we madhise will succeed in getting our rights. WE no longer want to be discriminated, humiliated and remain a second class citizen of a country whose government denies our citizenship rights.
    Maoist will only listen to violence, nothing else. We want to be heard.

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  12. I wonder if death toll crosses the limit set by Gyanendra and then people
    will demand action against the Interim HEAD of state.
    If you look the demands of Madhesis they are legitimate.
    Only two major demands : costituency based on population and
    Federal structure. Both are pillars of DEMOCRACY.
    Govt has to take quick action else they will not be in a situation to take
    any action.
    Main loser will be NC which has substantial vote bank in Terai.

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  13. Too bad SPA+M will not be brought to justice for killings during the 1990-2005 period but also for surpressing the Madheshi movement (although I have my reservations for this movement). SPA+M, everywhere you look, you are surrounded by DEATH! LOL.

    Wagle sissy, funding gonna stop soon for this blog from the SPA+M HQs!

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  14. Am I wrong in thinking that we have (1) one-person-one-vote system, (2) number of seats for the parliament is based on the size of the population in an area, for example Dolpa has one seat and Morang has four.

    People are free to field/elect their candidates and fill the parliament with ones who look after their causes. What are people complaining about not having proportional representation?

    Can someone enlighten me?

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  15. Arrest of former minister is to deviate attention from fact.
    During April movement royalists were talking about Maoists infiltration.
    This govt is crying about royalists infiltration. There may be infiltration at small
    scale, but that does not mean you have to go brutal over all protester.

    Madhesi are paying price for supporting parties like NC and UML. These two
    parties have strong base in Terai. This shows that they never liked communal
    party. But now they have no option. They are being pushed to wall.
    How comes in a democracy 50% people compelled to send 20% MPS.
    Come on Girija, Makune you will be the loser if you do not show seriousness.

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  16. Royalists being arrested for terai unrest- what a fuc*()G farce. Even the King does not have any bloody clout to cause such an uprising and this cuckoo tom and jerry government think it is buggers like Tulsi Giri, thapa and gang, with what – 10 of their stooges? Badri Mandal can’t even go out of his own home with confidence, and he is creating all the mayhem? What a load of poppy crap. Ask anyone down there, there are people not only from our side of the border but from the other side involved in their andolan. Definite funding from the Indians, and of course sob sissy’s like Wagle and his Kantipur don’t cover the event because they were paid in the first place by India to cover the andolan as per their whims and fancies and now they don’t want this poppy cock covered as we will witness the obvious – beatings by police and killings in the same manner on the one hand and all sorts of illegal Indian activity on foreign soil on the other. The difference being the dhotiwallas down south have their pals in government now and at the same time their other pals down in the terai causing trouble – they want to have their cake and eat it too.
    Don’t get me wrong, the demands are genuine and should be answered to ASAP, but the things going on down their is a bit of this but a whole lot of the other.

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  17. The army did bugger all to control the maoists. To tell you frankly, they did’nt do sh%t. But, now the government should pull up their socks and put an end to all this nonsense. Time to bring out the armed force and engage and not be disengaged like for the past 200 years. Now we have two armies so use them both to end all this terai mukti nonsense. If not, today it will be terai, tommorrow manang, dayafter tamang etc etc. Time to end all this and head for CA. Time to get seriuous – bloody serious. Desserters should be shot! Time to use the good old kick up the behind. If we can do it to the King we can bloody well do it to everyone else.

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  18. Scoop, you rajbhakta babu,

    Don’t try to make fool of bloggers here saying that royalist and anti-national bugs like Kamal Thapa and Badri Mandal don’t have any hands in the Terai unrest. Think how dirty game they are playing in the name of politics? Do you know that the country could be divided and disintegrated because of their cheap game against the democracy in Nepal? Royalists, with the help and encouragement of Indian Hindu fundamentalists, are trying to play with the very unity of this country and trying to destabilize it. Don’t try to act like a fool, you fool.

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  19. I agree with Gre that the royalists must have seized this opportunity of the terai boiling to help it reach a bolining point– I think all political forces are apt at doing that. It can’t also be ruled out that the Maoists may have also had a hand in this to expedite the process to declare Nepal a republic by crying foul (king’s hand). And the seven parties have also played their part (the 53 madhesi parliamentarians are considered to be part of the seven parties). And definitely, India must have also had a hand as Nepalese have always blamed India for everything for ages and not without a reason either. So, the blame should be on everyone– and more on the ones holidng power because they are the ones who said the aspirations of the April Revolution will be realized– the miscreants will always be there to destabilize– this is why a strong presence of the government is required and in failing to maintain law and order, one should let others to run the show if the ones in power fail. But then, the current parliament jsut decided that there would be no opposition leader, so putting things into that context.. what all can be expected from this government than repeat what Pushpa Kamal goes around saying?

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  20. This minister is one of the most oportunist politician. Instead of solving the problem of payment for oil imports from India, he opted to come out of the government for political gain. Shame!!

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  21. The guy who posted the blog with a name of “Kishan” is a son of a bitch. He is trying to act as an American using “wanna” and other short Western slangs. I can guarantee this motherfucker has serious Immigration problem in USA. Must be illegal working in Indian restaurant in cash. His life sounds to be a pathetic one thats why he posted such a pessimistic blog.Everyone, Lets wish him that his restaurant owner file him a greencard without making him slave for another several years.
    Shit Head! Kishan, look at your life dude. Focus more on washing dishes rather than posting idiot messages.

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  22. This minister’s resigination should be accepted. Why cant he raise these issues in the Cabinet meetings, and what was he doing till now. He was or his party members were ministers previously also and they never said a word about this problem.

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  23. Delay on accepting Federal Democratic system of governance and proportionate representatives of the federal constituents of the state by Prime Minister GPK and his Nepali Cogress party cadres will damage the nation with contaminations of regressive forces.

    Congress D, UML and Maoists parties have already accepted the adoption of the Federal Democratic system of governance and proportionate representatives of the federal constituents.

    Found guilty by the Rayamajhi commision must bring to justice as soon as possible to control the voilent protest of Madheshi people whose demands for the amendment of the interim constitution might be beneficial to whole nation.

    Government must act promptly to fullfil the demand of Madheshi people as Maoists have once purposed to fullfil their demand before having dialogue with MMF.

    The change from the protest will be good for the people of Nepal – all ethnic groups and so on. However, once who trigered the voilence in the protest must be brough to justice no matter he or she is MMF or MTF or Maoists or Royalists member.

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  24. We have understood that proportionate representation is according to the population residing in one particular geographical area. However, the definition of proportionate representation in the current movement is completely different. It means 40% seats exclusively to the Madhesi community, not to the Terai region. By Madhesi community, it means Tripathi, Yadav, Sah, Mandal, Mahato etc or people of Indian origin. It does not include people of pahade origin residing in Terai (or Madhesh) even if that family has four generations residing in Terai. And only people of Indian origin can contest elections and not others, By the way, Tharu community has already expressed that they are not Madhesis and asked not to be included in the current movement. Secondly, the current movement is seeking 40% representation in the government (even if they do not adequate qualification) on the basis of their castes.

    Federal structure (on basis of ethnicity) is considered panacea for all the problems. With 100 communities in Nepal, how will the federal structure (on basis of ethnicity) be created and be acceptable to everyone? No one has provided acceptable model. The Maoists had presented a model with 14 states but now they are silent. According to Population Census 2001, 10 large communities comprise of 68% of the population. Another 90 communities comprise 32% of the population. If 10 autonomus regions are structured, then rest of 90 communities are done injustice whereas this is supposed to be ‘inclusive democracy’.

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  25. Let the Madheshi protest continue as long as they can. But for all Nepali people and the eight political parties proportionate representation must have a population based electoral process.

    Madheshi people’s forum must accept the proportionate representation based on the population. The permanent residence status also must be addressed in the interim constitution that people who have resided in a constituent of the state for a certain time – popularly one fiscal year.

    Madeshi’s demand for 40% representation of their people is based on primitive tribalism and is triggered by the regressive force of Nepal to create cronic problem for the new democratic Nepal.

    The Federal Democratic government system has to be based on the development basis of the nation. All federal systms are based on premise of how to decentralize the development process of the state by having local representations participation in the process of development.

    Madeshi people if true according to Shaman then they have discriminating demand for the political process.

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  26. sonu (20:43:19) :,

    What cabinet are you talking about? The same that came with power with Mob and Goon movement? The same cabinet that has BRANDED WORLD TERRORISTS (with interpol notice against them). The same cabinet that has never believed in constitution, polls, and people and always believed in Violence and Terrorism. Which one are you talking about?

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  27. Scoop,

    Good observation. I am sure that SPA+Mmers are doing this violence in alliance with Indian Congress. They want to beat the Monarchy in Nepal, they want to beat anyone who goes against SPAM and they want to beat up BJP too.

    Anyway, some people here are just paid to make rubbish articles. Some are just paid to comment on them. Some get the kicks out of spreading rumors and the SPAMmers get the kick out of spreading violence.

    Like

  28. Definitely believe that which you stated. Your favorite justification appeared to be on the net the simplest thing to be aware of.
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    they just do not know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top and defined out the whole thing without having side-effects , people can take a
    signal. Will likely be back to get more. Thanks

    Like

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