Nepal: A Country Cursed by a Widow?

By Krishna Giri

I don’t think any Nepali will raise their eyebrows when they hear- “SATI LE SARAPEKO DESH”. Right from the unification, Nepali have witnessed ongoing severity in terms of governance. Power snatching by any means has become style in Nepal. I don’t want to go back to 17th century to dig the past. Rather I will go back to the recent past. 20 governments in 20 years; that’s pretty impressive, and with all due respect, Maoist supremo has presently announced that another unity government is coming in weeks. Will Maoists allow MK to stay as a buffoon PM for next few weeks or they want MK to continue with his bizarre funny political career until the festive season? This remains a mystery as the ball is in Maoist court. Not just MK but UML is an amusing party. They don’t have any leaders to lead the party; at least, none who can win peoples hearts and votes. Enough assessments have been done about CA performance for various including former DPM to current PM and I should waste no time. The UML Party – neither capitalist nor communist. Simply, lost in ideology and leadership, particularity, after the rise of Maoists.

Successive failures to act in national interests have plunged the country into utter chaos. Having 20 PMs and almost 1000 ministers in past 20 years did not help to produce some appealing leaders. These couple of decades of democratic transition should have taught leaders to act above personal and party interests. How long is adequate for a democratic transition will remain a question in Nepal’s history. No one can escape from their moral obligation as all national parties have run this country in some stage. But why they failed and subsequently we failed? We can’t always blame our geographic features and neighbours. Being a Hindu Kingdom until recent past, is this is the nation that was really cursed by a widow? If yes, what is coming next? Astrologers failed to forecast the end of 240 years old Monarchy but can someone help us to find out when this anarchy is coming to an end? Is the curse going to diminish since the country has been already declared a secular state?

Raiding dance restaurants and casinos is not enough to maintain law and order in a country. Witch hunting has stretched to looters and abductors. People have lost faith in law and security imposers and started to take laws in their own hands. Lynching and beating of culprits may sound a relief for victims but is it the way a country should be operating? Who is to be blamed for? Who preached these teachings? What have become breeding grounds for up to 80 armed insurgent groups? What was the cause for which 15000 people died? And what were the reasons for the abolition of – Monarchy, Hindu state, Daura Suruwal to Nepali language?? There are thousands of questions to be answered by state. This country has been cursed by a widow but this can not be answers to all, can it?

Maobadi tried to tussle with big brother and the obvious result was the fall of the government. People knew that conventional fact long before Prachanda admitted honouring them, ‘Bideshi Prabhu’. Even in his departing speech, he could not spell them out but rather, he identified them as god. Soon after their exit from government, their performances have gotten better; bringing the country into standstill, from streets to CA chamber. I beg your pardon but what an elegant way to exercise democracy. It has just been weeks since the fall of last government and we have already started to perceive new game about Tibet. Is it just India matters for us? Can’t we play a positive sum game between India and China? What are the consequences if China is annoyed? Is this is the pretext to fall yet another government? If a government can not sustain a year, what prosperity can we expect? Is this really is a democracy that we are exercising? We do not have any local governments for more than a decade and may remain the same for many years to come. This is the fundamental breach on norms of democracy. If we look up to our main democratic figures, one should not be amazed by the fact that they all are autocrats. Why everything looks so wrong? Why this horde of people can not agree on national interests? Why they can not come together for economic and social prosperity? Why they can not agree to hold free and fair elections in all levels? Why peace and security of this country is not important to all? Is it because, “YO SATILE SARAPEKO DESH HO”?

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14 thoughts on “Nepal: A Country Cursed by a Widow?”

  1. kati gali garne ta aba desh lai
    kohi ta chahiyo yo desh ma sacho kura garne
    kati hitory lai gali garne
    uhi netahurko anuhar dhekehar wakka bhaisakiyo

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  2. Dharma haina KARMA sanga jodiyeko cha hamro desh
    KARMA nagarne netaharule hare pani jite pani rule garepachi yetro bancha desh

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  3. Krishha,
    Don’t underestimate our leaders. Though most of them have lost election but don’t you think you need skills to lose from 2 constituencies? This is new style; harera jitney Bazigar haru hun mamra mananiya haru. God bless Nepal.

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  4. Nepal: Inviting The Dragon In
    By Bhaskar Roy

    Some very dangerous thoughts have recently been articulated by senior Nepalese journalist and political activist, N.P. Upadhyaya in an article in The Telegraph, Nepal. Mr. Upadhyaya’s central theme is that India and the United States were sabotaging China from Nepalese soil to try and break up Tibet from China, and China could retaliate militarily in Nepal, if pushed too far.

    Quoting unnamed highly placed Nepalese Foreign Ministry sources, Upadhyaya says that the Chinese Ambassador, just before leaving for Beijing last week for consultations, hinted to the Nepalese authorities that thousands of PLA soldiers have already been put on high alert and may soon be deployed on the Nepal-China (Tibet) border.

    Of course, the Chinese Ambassador in Nepal, Qiu Guohong, met top Nepalese leaders including Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal and Foreign Minister Sujata Koirala to protect and seek clarification regarding the Nepali government’s position on the meeting of six Constituent Assembly (CA) members with the Dalai Lama, earlier in July. That these CA members from the Tharu and Madhesi communities announced there will be more visits to the Tibetan leaders in Dharamsala, has angered the Chinese and their anti-India Nepali friends even more. Upadhyaya speculates that China would have to take a “very bold decision to treat and tame (emphasis added) Indo-dependent (sic) Nepal in order to safeguard its underbelly – Tibet”, to quell the deliberate onslaught, coming as it does from various political quarters, both domestic and international. Upadhyaya suggests that a Chinese blockade of Nepal’s northern border could bring economic disaster to Nepal; certainly, Upadhyaya forgot to take into calculation that if the Chinese army invaded Nepal’s Southern border on which the country depends for most of its trade and import, will remain open?

    From their perspective, the Chinese authorities have a serious problem with the exiled Tibetan religious leader, the 14th Dalai Lama. The Dalai Lama and the majority of the Tibetan exiles are struggling peacefully for at least real autonomy for Tibet, as guaranteed under the Chinese constitution. China is aware that the Indian government has yet kept the Tibetan diaspora under much greater control than elsewhere in the world. But they are much more concerned about the US role, which they perceive as aimed to keep China’s restive minority regions, boiling, if not dislodge them from China.

    Traditionally, the Tibetans had a respected place in Nepal. Tibetans travel both clandestinely and with legal permits from Tibet through Nepal to Dharamsala to meet the Dalai Lama. But China sees anti-
    Chinese protests by Tibetan exiles in Nepal as a serious threat to China’s territorial integrity. Erstwhile King Gyanendra cooperated, under Chinese pressure from 2002 to put down the Tibetans. But the Lhasa riots in March, last year greatly disturbed the Chinese. They saw Nepal as the main conduit for fomenting trouble by the Dalai Lama in Tibet, and are determined to sanitise Nepal of Tibetans.

    The Chinese contention is that world government leaders must not meet the Dalai Lama as such meetings encourage him to try and split China. Using their economic and trade power, the Chinese brought down relations with France a notch this year. But world leaders get around and the Dalai Lama is welcome.

    The latest problems arose with the six CA leaders meeting the Dalai Lama and vowing to send more such delegations to Dharamsala. China pressures Nepal because it can. US congressmen regularly meet the Tibetan leader, and US Presidents are legend for their “drop by” meetings with the Dalai Lama in the White House.

    Despite transforming Nepal from a Hindu country to a Republican system under the Maoist demands last year, the overwhelming Nepalese are religious. And the Dalai Lama is as respected as a famous Hindu seer. It will, therefore, be difficult for China and Nepal’s hard line Maoists to turn the people away from the Dalai Lama.

    China’s boast of minority harmony and its Tibetan population’s commitment to the communist government was badly damaged by last year’s Lhasa protests. It is said that the name of the Dalai Lama is written on the hearts of all Tibetans, including those working for the Chinese government. In the course of last year’s Lhasa disturbance, a very senior Tibetan leader with the Lhasa government was dismissed for his sympathy for the Dalai Lama. The recent protests by minority Muslim Uighurs in China’s western Xinjiang region has further raised China’s concerns, and made the Chinese unnerved perhaps for the first time.

    China’s interest in Nepal is part of its “India containment” policy. Most recently, visiting Pakistan Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir advised chosen Nepali leaders to form a Nepal-China-Pakistan trilateral alliance and Nepal should enter into a relationship with Beijing. Obviously, the Maoist hardliners are delighted with this proposal and Upadhyaya hints in this direction. China had no connection with the fall of King Gyanendra in 2006, much as they had denied any links with Maoists before that event. With quick ascendency of the Maoists or the CPN (M) the Chinese leaders could not hide their elation at having penetrated Nepal strategically to counter India.

    Maoist Prime Minister, Pushpa Kamal Dahal made his first foreign visit to China, breaking with the India visit tradition. On his return, however, he said that his government would not play strategic games between India and China, and also tried to signal that the visit was not an official Prime Ministerial visit.

    In contrast, Prachanda’s Defence Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa Badal followed immediately with a visit to China in the last week of September, 2008. On his return, an elated Thapa revealed that the Chinese had offered to help build the Maoist People’s Liberation Army (PLA-M), and reiterated their commitment to safeguard Nepal’s territorial integrity.

    A number of senior Chinese officials, including their Ambassador in Nepal, voiced their commitment to safeguard Nepal’s territorial integrity. A senior Chinese academic who is also an advisor to the Chinese government, Prof. Wang Hong Wei alleged that China was fully aware of India’s plans to “Sikkimise” Nepal, and will never allow it, even if Nepal entered that process. This statement to the Nepalese newspaper The Kantipur, came out in June 2008.

    Three aspects are notable. One, all these politicised statements by the Chinese were made in Kathmandu, emphasising China’s position in Nepal. Second, Prof. Wang, who speaks on authority, conveyed a much more serious policy, that is, China will not allow Nepalese leaders to take their country into India’s sphere of influence. Third, in offering the Nepalese Maoist army support and assistance, China was actually helping an illegal army to develop. This would suggest the Chinese government and the CCP continues with its Maoist policy of supporting revolutionary armed uprising whenever the opportunity presents itself.

    It would be pertinent to note that Upadhyaya’s article reflects the views of the Chinese and the hard liners in the CPN (M) now United CPN (M), led by Mohan Vaidya Kiran, Ram Bahadur Thapa and others.

    Following the withdrawal of the Maoists from the government in the midst of controversial decisions including attempt at removing army Chief Rookmangud Katawal, an ideological battle ensued in the party between the more moderate Prachanda group and the hard line pro-China Mohan Vaidya group. At the moment, points are even but the battle is by no means over.

    Some articles in the Nepalese media during the past one year have been noticed to attack Prachanda and his No.2 Baburam Bhattarai, as pro-India and Indian agents. These articles or opinion pieces have all been written from within the Maoist camp. Both Prachanda and Bhattarai have been hurt by their propaganda and have made some ideological and political compromises, but have still held most of their positions. A temporary truce has been arrived at. But it is temporary. It is unlikely that the Chinese would embark on a military misadventure in Nepal, like they did in Vietnam in 1979. China wanted to teach Vietnam a lesson, but got a bloody nose instead. Unlike Vietnam, Nepal has no army which can take the mighty PLA on. In that kind of scenario the international community will not stand by.

    The Maoist hardliners including people like Upadhyaya would do well to call for a national referendum on India – whether the Nepalese people would want a freeze of relations with India, including stoppage of trade and commerce, Indian aid and assistance, and an embargo on Nepalese citizens working in India. It would be interesting to get a response from Mr. N.P. Upadhyaya.

    (The author is an analyst with many years of experience. He can be reached at grouchohart@yahoo.com)

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  5. Well, I don’t see these “NETAS” or that “SATI” as culprits………..
    Rather we all Nepalese are culprits….

    Ek patak aandolan garepachhi hamro kam sakyo bhanne thaanchhou haami……..

    tespachhi neta haru lai mass-pressure samma pani dinnou…….,khabardari pani gardainou….

    yo desh haamro ho, bhanne feeling bhitrai bata hunu paryo.

    Haami harek tapka tatha taha ka janta –ma, tapai,
    dhani, gareeb, majdoor, udyogpati….etc. sabai aafnai
    personal swaarth maa lipta chhou. NARAAMRO KURA BATA AAFULE FAIDA PAAYE TESKO PRAYOG GARCHHOU ANI PAYENOU BHANE BIRODH??? ANI HAAMI NEPALI JANTA KASARI MAHAAN BHAYOU TA ????

    ani haami beech
    bata aayeka neta kasari ramra hoonchhan..

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  6. Haven’t we been asking the same questions again and again for ages?

    I wish, we could be optimist for a change but there’s nothing that looks, its going to happen any time soon or ever…

    People are left with no choices but to take the law into their own hands because they cannot be the victims forever…..

    And must it not be the lesson for rulers to bring the changes about?

    God bless us all!

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  7. Problem is as we write thank you all contributors…the international context changes.
    Look further than your noses
    America the beloved USA is just like India in the end it is your brother shot by their HELP
    Sustainable development my sons have to learn in school class 9 is not very well explained, sustainable development is a concept which does not exist in marriage.
    He comes home without money and she has to have coocked or the other way around.
    Tibet is a medieval culture, like the northamerican indians they deserve the country back is it therefore realistic?
    Dreaming is better. At this stage the hatred for India is like the racism in Europe, if they are lynching indians, boycotting indian shops as ‘ we’ do you are no better than the europeans boycotting so called terrorist muslim businesses with exception of few enlightened jews who got it right .
    Racism, sexism it is all bad. America does not exist, what China, a country that had sucessfull population policies and produces so much plastic and worst pollution.
    Kills its students, what India shoots dalits.
    The only country you can curse freely is your own.
    And be homesick from abroad.
    Solution is not to pray it is ora et labora
    :work and pray.
    sano difference.

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  8. Basically the culture of permanent bandha is good for health we do not have to work or breathe traffic jam pollution.
    This is a great nation.
    Try get cows out of traffic they are also not related to any political party with dangerous views.

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  9. Around twelfish people start defying curfew but who knows we will be smashed up in tempoe.
    People are walking around but atmosphere is grim depressed, no discount in the shops.
    Nobody knows who called this bandh. I greeted police or army in an instinct of survival.
    Cursed by fear…

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