Nepal in Transition and Its Difficulties

By Chattra Bahadur

Nepal is at throes of change and transition appears difficult than anticipated. Of course, transition is never easy anywhere since it calls for dismantling of existing mechanisms and structures to be replaced by newer mechanisms and structures. And this is where we have collectively failed to take adequate measures.

Present political scenario in Nepal exactly points at our failure to chart the course of actions clearly to achieve the broader objectives. The irony of current situation is that our political leaders are quick and eager to provide perceptual impression of ‘change’ whereas, in reality, everything has remained the same, except for the authoritarian rule of the King. And, even the editorials of national newspapers and political commentators frequently forewarn that, if present trend continues, the authoritarian rule of the King may be replaced by the authoritarian rule of the SPA and the Maoists.

The SPA, alliance with diverse political ideologies, joined hands to achieve two objectives, rising above their respective political interests; the objectives being, to bring back democracy and to bring the Maoists to the political ‘mainstream’. Though the Maoists are not able to provide credible evidence of behavioral change, at least they have signed the peace deal renouncing their bloody armed struggle. At the same time, though ‘inclusive’ democracy has been widely publicized, the functioning of the political parties and actions of the functionaries of political parties often fail to provide assurance of ‘inclusive’ democracy.

On each political rally, on each press conference, on each political speech, on each page of newspaper, and on each interview, ‘new’ Nepal finds reference as long-term priority. And the first step to create ‘new’ Nepal, as any speaker clarifies, is the elections to the Constituent Assembly and the new Constitution that it will prepare and promulgate. To put it simply, there is broad consensus that the immediate priority is the elections of the Constituent Assembly and long-term priority is prosperous and equitable ‘new’ Nepal.

However, the actions of various stakeholders appear working against the very cause that they all have joined together to achieve. The Maoists, for instance, have not shown sincerity to upkeep the peace deal with the SPA. Their strong-arm tactics, extortion, vandalism, and brutal repression of any opposition have continued unabated. The frequent strong-worded statements that veil threats, unsubstantiated allegations, and statements without accountability of the Maoists leadership will not help the process of the Constituent Assembly elections. The government, on other hand, appears meek and feeble in handling any situation either head-on or proactively. It must understand that some situations require stern actions since its foremost responsibility is the safety and security of the citizens. In fact, negotiation about everything under-the-sun may not be applicable in all situations and, definitely, it is not panacea in itself. Other political parties continually place onus of failures on the government, whereas they themselves are part of the government holding important portfolios. It appears that they intentionally fail to understand that the failure of the government is the failure of the respective political parties as well.

In totality, stakeholders are caught in other peripheral issues rather than addressing the immediate priority. For the Constituent Assembly elections to acquire any credibility, three issues appear important: distribution of citizenship cards to the excluded groups, law and order situation, and understanding of why and how the Constituent Assembly elections define the future of Nepal and her citizens.

Though distribution of citizenship cards in hills have been relatively smooth (except where the Maoists intervened), distribution has been severely hampered in the larger parts of Terai. Because of indefinite strike announced by the MJF and resumption of armed struggle by JTMM, it is unlikely that it will be smooth anytime soon. Secondly, the law and order situation has reached a dismal point. The security apparatus has become inactive and its presence is negligible. Thirdly, there is clear lack of understanding of the purpose of the Constituent Assembly. The most highlighted feature of the Constituent Assembly is a decision regarding whether the monarchy will exist or cease in Nepal. Apart from that, no one seems to be aware of its relevancy and purpose. There is also confusion regarding the proportionate representation and federalism. Many smaller and regular surveys sponsored by NGO and other agencies, and published in the national newspapers also indicate people’s vagueness regarding these issues. It cannot be that all these surveys provide biased results. And this is where the importance of political parties lies. They must understand that only interaction programs, press conferences, consultations, seminars, workshops, training programs, and rallies in the capital city will not increase understanding of the general Nepalese. The political leaders, civic society, human rights activists must have courage to venture out of the capital city to make people aware why the Constituent Assembly is a stepping stone towards better Nepal. Even in metropolitan cities, political activists have remained dormant and disinterested; they are only active at times to protest against ‘regressive and reactionary forces’ or to protest the King’s statements.

When we judge two important parameters, distribution of citizenship cards and law-and-order situation, the chances of holding the Constituent Assembly elections on time (Jestha) appears remote. Even if aforementioned two conditions drastically improve and the Constituent Assembly elections will be held by due date, it may yet fail to fulfill its basic purpose. Because then people may vote as a result of enthusiasm to vote, and not because they understood why they are voting and what they are voting for. Again it may fail to include aspirations of many Nepalese, defeating its very purpose and perhaps resulting in another bloody and brutal armed struggle. Therefore, time has come for the political parties to move forward and work to create awareness regarding the Constituent Assembly, its purposes, its aims, and its importance. Only then, the Constituent Assembly elections would acquire credibility and it would be meaningful. It is only way to carry forward transition without difficulty.






6 responses to “Nepal in Transition and Its Difficulties”

  1. Captain Crash Avatar

    How can foreign aids or loans to a government having no credible accountability and respect for human rights, and handed over to a terrorist group of yesteryear whose activities are evident as unabated, be taken differently than funding Taleban or Al Qaeda or Khmer Rouge regime ?

    Until and unless Nepalese government conforms to democratic values, handles the grants and loans with proper accountability, respects human-rights, ensures the rights of all groups, investigates into all human-rights violations and ends the culture of impunity, Nepal should be considered for putting under economic sanction by international community and donor agencies, as remedial procedure to prevent Nepal from turning into a fertile breeding ground of terrorists.

  2. ??????? ??? Avatar
    ??????? ???


    ?? ??? ????? ???? ?????? ???? ?? ????? ????? ???? ? ??? ?????? ??? ?? ????? ?????? ???? ? ?????? ?? ??????, ????? ????? ?? ?????? ?????? ????
    ???? ??????????? ??????? ???????? ???? ???? ??? ??? ???? ??? ????? ????? ???? ????; let me bring some of them here;

    ?. ????????? ????: ??????? ? ?????????????? ?? ???? ????? ??????????? ?? ??? ??; ???? ??? ?????? ??? ??? ??, ???? ???? ?????, ??????, ??????, ????? ????? ????? ???? ??? ?????? ??, ?? ???? ??????

    ? ???? ?? ???? ??? ?? ???? ????? ????, ?? ???? ???? ?? ?????? ??? ???? ????? ?????? ? ?????? ?????? ??????; ????? ????? ?? ??? ??????? ????? ????? ?? ????? ?? ?????? ?????? ?? ????????? ????? ????? ?????? ????? ???? ?? ????? ????? ? ?? ???? ????? ?? ????? ???????? ?? ??? ?????? ???? ??????

    ?. ???? ?????? ?? ????? ?? ??? ??? ????? ????? ??? ????? ???? ??; ????????? ? ????; ??? ? ????; ?? ???? ? ?? ?? ??????? ??? ???? ??? ????? ???????? ????? ????; ? ???? ?????? ???, ??? ???? ??? ???, ?? ?????? ????? ????

    Now let me make a point here on another most sensitive issue, which is on its way to destroy us

    “?????? ??????????? ??? ????, ?????? ???? ????”

    ???? ??????? ?? ????? ?? ??? ????? ????????? ?????? ???? ?; ?????? ???? ???? ????, ????? ????????? ??? ?? ????? ??, ?????? ????? ??? ??? convert ?????? ? ????? ????? ?? ??????? ????? ???? ?????? ?????? ????????? ????????? ???? ?

    ????? ????? ????????? ?? ????? ????? ??????? ??? ??? ??? ?? ???? ???????? ?? ???? ? ???????? ????? ?????? ????? ???? ????? ???; ????? ??? ????? ?????? ????????? ???? ?? ????? ?; ?????? ???, ?????, ?????, ????? ???? ?? ????? ??? ??? ?? ????????? ?? ????? ?? ????? ???; ??? ?? ??? ???? ???? ?????? ????? ?? ?????? ?????? ?? ???? ????? ???? ???; ????? ?? ????? ???? ???? ??????? ??? ????? ???? ??? ??? christian missionary ?? dollar ?? ???? ?????? ??

    Let us all be aware that we are on the verge of extinction
    A majority of our jana jaati people live in the remote places, they are not educated and they are poor. so our people are being fed with the expansionistic Bible, which means that our tradition is being erased away. Our people are being lured inot their profitable business, with their candies and chocolates, when the government is doing nothing to protect our ignorant people.

    Let us remember, our janajaati people are the original and indiginous people of Nepal, and our culture is unique, and it exists only in Nepal. But we are now under attack by the missionaries, and people are falling prey to massive conversions. The government MUST ACT to save us from such conversions.

    Let us thwart them and prove the world that our heritage is not superstition but the reality of the Universal Existential Meaning.

  3. mote from kathmandu Avatar
    mote from kathmandu

    tero ghar ma aayer tero muukh ma mutchu.. raaaan laee makae bhute jasto bhutchu!
    i am yane mister mote i am from kathmandu,
    bhatee ma gyo chhoeela cheeura khanchu…
    rakshi dherae khae pachee ssaaunee lae hanchu.. So plz stand up!!

  4. k a u s h a l Avatar
    k a u s h a l

    Chattra Bahadurji’s article was rather educating, informing and somewhat the same old entertaining dossier.

    Nepalese government has been delaying everything as usual. The legitimation of the politicians in the parliament is thawing out in a daily basis. Why is there still a big bureaucratic mess?

    As a mere observer I take as read that whatsoever the supposed ‘political elites’ i.e. the so called socialist congress, to communist CPN-UML, to the JanaBadi Maoists and others including the much more right wing RPP’s. What is the agenda of the essence here?

    It is about time why is Nepal failing to unite? Look at the Punjabis to Tamils; Maharasthran to Sikkimese; and others with the population of more than a billion (factions within the government are present but are an anomaly in a bigger scale which involves less than few millions in Bharat).

    An infinitesimal 27 million unwilling to co-operate; why because Brahmin can’t touch someone as they are in the hierarchy. And the “SETAMAGURALI” (the indigenous group JANAJATI as they portray themselves) might hate a Brahmin’s nose as they are much longer and vice versa. Aren’t we getting into a larger social prejudice by doing this? Appreciatively the MJF then joins the struggle aiding much more intolerance and discrimination, chauvinism. Each and every ‘social assemblage’ are equally accountable; First one for suppressing and others for happily being suppressed. We are not living in the times of Shah Jahan whereby every workers hand is being chopped.

    A very successful revolution; a much peaceful then that the French achieved or any other state in this post modern world; although with a very introvert society which somehow manages to present its development as an outer shell to the outer world very recently; by still holding the old “Bullock cart” values internally.

    Modernisination, liberalisation, and future might begin from someone who has prospects who could play an important role in the foreseeable future. Giving the power that were using violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, esp. for political purposes, which were terroristic method of governing and of resisting a government. To the political parties who failed undoubtedly to produce any sort of stability which led to a political commotion.

    Like many other democracies Nepal has been tagged as a failed state by the occident few years back. Recovering yet slower than the global struggle to tame ‘climate change’; It wont be able to exert its importance in the global arena unless it would have a stable form of governance which needs to be reformed from the grassroots. If the monarchy is so much hated and is to be out rooted then so should the politicians who were fighting the struggle if they deem it as the biggest issue. As development might be a bigger issue for someone else who will then be able to prioritise his/her goals for the betterment of Nepal.

    I would like to apologise if I caused any offence.

  5. Mero Desh Avatar
    Mero Desh

    Very well written artical. I also agree that there is not understanding on how the constituent election would help build Nepal. People are just going along with the wind thats it and the parties are also busy organizing seminars, interaction programs thats it and most of it blaming each other.

    They are just beating around the bush instead of targeting the core issues that are very vital for conducting the election and laying the foundation for the new Nepal. Just declaring the country as republic is not the so called “ELIXIR” for everything.

    I don’t understand why they are just concentrating on the declaring republic rather then addressing the issues like maintaining law and order, providing basic necessity to people, eradicating politics from the education sector, making independent judiciary, providing regulation and favorable environment for the NRN or other companies to invest in the country.

    Why do we forget that Nepal runs on remittance and making the favorable environment for the NRN to invest in Nepal is the best way to get the money flowing the country. Political parties all too occupied with blaming each other for the everything when no one is taking initiative to come up with constructive ideas.

    When will our so called netas give a little thought towards country rather then
    for themselves?
    Well Nepali people are also very forward to go and start burning tiers, taking out julush, and organizing Nepal bandh in an instant for no reason at all.

    Here is the theme that I have come up with that is keeping the country in deadlock state.

    1. Maoist still haven’t given up their jungali behavior and people are still hesitant to trust them.

    2. Political parties are busy trying to prove that they are the one who have liberated the country and can help build the country.

    3. Nepali people don’t have any understanding towards what will happen in future. Will constituent solve problems or better put it this way “What is constituent assemble elections”? They are all busy organizing Nepal bandh, chakka jam, running along with the clueless wind.

    People form civil societies also only know to sit for protest thats it. No body ever takes out the topic or building the nation with proper foundation. NO one shouts about creating effective rules, punishing criminals (be it king, ministers or the general people).

    If we want to build Nepal then take example of what the people of Japan did after the war, how Americans lifted themselves from the great depression, how Europe rebuilt itself after the war. These are the examples that we must follow if we want some change from where we are not (forget about making our country like Switzerland or like Japan ). At least if we follow their example we could build up upon a path that can guide us to prosperity.

    Until and unless Nepali people understand that without the formation of the basic building blocks like I discussed earlier, maoist giving up their jungali behavior and political parties raising themselves from their own interest I don’t see the Nepal moving forward. Instead every passing day is pushing it further backward.

    We all have to rise up from our own vested interest and think for the entire country rather then individuals, raise ourselves from the segregation based on caste. The thinking of every individual must reflect these changes.

    Lastly think this way:

    “Developement of country implicitely means developement or each and every individual of the country. “

    Pashupati Nath le sabai lai buddhi pradan garun

    Jai Nepal

  6. yuvaraj Avatar

    If we were to have peace in neapl..there can be many sectors of our economy that we have not thought about that can be exploited. It is not an unknown fact that nepal has huge resources both underground and above ground. While we have been able to use the Everst Heights to reap some benefits, i do not understand why we are not developing our resources underground. I personally feel that mining industry can be big in nepal if we pay enough attention to the surveying and extracting the resources from the ground. I do not see why we have to pay so much to export precious stones from neighbouring country when we can be self sufficient and in turn export these stones.
    I am sorry that my suggestion here does not really address the article written by MR Chattra Bahadur but this is just a possible suggestion for an economic transition in our country.

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