Category Archives: Guest Column

My Kind Of Call Is Restricted

Nepal Cell Phone: No Signal For Some Journalists

By Gunaraj Luintel

When my plane landed in Tribhban Bimansthal two days ago, I tried to make a call from my cell phone. I heard the same message in the same irritating tone- ‘This type of call is restricted.’

I was coming back to Kathmandu from visiting Dang, a conflict-hit district in mid-West Nepal. Two weeks ago, on May 2, state-owned cell phone monopoly Nepal Telecom resumed the service for some selected lines in Kathmandu.

I was in the CPN-UML office that day to listen Madhav Kumar Nepal, Secretry General of the party. He was there after being released from three month long detention in his own house. When the news conference was over, somebody whispered that the mobile service had resumed. Within hours, people in Kathmandu, journalists and leaders included, started making calls to their kith and kin from their handheld machine. Obviously, the resumption of the service brought smile on the faces of people. Photojournalists didn’t miss to capture those happy moments in their machines.

On that day to, I had opened my mobile, charged the batteries and dialed the number. What I hear what this message: ‘This type of call is restricted.”

I instantly smelled that I am not in the government set priority list of people to be connected. I asked my colleagues about the condition of their mobile phones. Some of them were listening the same message. In fact, most of the journalists were denied the service. Ditto with political leaders and rights activists. By now lines have been opened up gradually but I am among those very few who are still being denied the service. I am not really complaining.

I think it is a kind of importance the government has given to us. WE, who are denied the cell phone service. I think those who got their lines resumed probably felt ashamed. They were not in the elite group to which government gives so much importance.

In our publications and in Kantipur TV, four scribes are still denied the service. (Sohan Shrestha, Deputy News Chief of Kantipur TV and Bimal Gautam, reporter, KTV. Kantipur daily reporter Ujir Magar and myself.) I was eager to find out the reason behind the denial of service to me. Finally, my colleagues at Kantipur found out. It was because of Security. Our crime was to write. Those of us who have been singled out are journalists writing on conflict related issues in the papers. I tried to remember what I have done? What I have written?

Yes, I tried to write about the plight of the people who are suffering from the endless saga of violence. That certainly made the government unhappy. The government thought that we were the real people who might use our cell phone against its policies. Government couldn’t go against the whole press. It chose to single out journalists. Since we write about people, our phone numbers are publicly available and anyone could have accessed them: from politician to the general public, film actress to schoolteacher. National and international news sources could contact us.

The ‘old breeds’ of the rulers want to tackle the terrorism problem by denying cell phone services to journalists like us. The mindset of our rulers is that of 50s or 60s. So the measures it opts would be suitable to that policy. State declared terrorist use not only the mobile phones but also the electricity and the public transportation. I wonder why the government is still supplying electricity to people and why public vehicles are running on the roads. I am quite sure this regressive regime one-day will ban the every products of modern technology.

Well, again I am feeling proud. The government recognized our journalistic contribution over the years. I will not be requesting authorities to connect my cell phone line. I am sure, one day, the authorities too will feel irritated by this message: ‘This type of call is restricted.’

Gunaraj Luitel is the News Editor at Kantipur Daily Newspaper.

3 Comments »

HMG is now only surviving by such methods and with RNA and police. In Ukraine and other former Sowjetrepublics similair developments are now resulting in bloody clashes.

Comment by anonymous — 5/15/2005 @ 12:19 pm

Maybe because these people’s mobiles are switched off, there is no bomb blast in Kathmandu?

Comment by Ramesh Singh — 5/15/2005 @ 2:08 pm

What a nice comment by Ramesh Singh. He is right. It doesn’t matter if some mobiles are still switche off. Because there is no blast in Kathmandu and the city has been very peaceful. We need peace hook or by crook. Some mobile phone owners must wait.

Comment by Samjhana — 5/15/2005 @ 10:03 pm

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Nepal Chintan: All We Need is a Good Leadership

Nepal Chintan: Who should lead our country?

By Suvecha

The country is in a very sensitive situation. The once peaceful Nepal is one of the most conflict driven countries in the South Asian region. Democracy has been chucked out the door. And – right now there is no one the people can look to for leadership.

The King is leading the country in a regime that does not allow for any protest. Student organisations are being shut down. Media freedom is still under restriction despite the State of Emergency. People are still being barred from travelling overseas. The present situation is not a long term solution and several would argue that it is not even a short-term solution.

A constitutional democracy is needed. I will not go against that. We cannot just disregard the Royal family. They are a part of our proud history. But, we need a mechanism to monitor them and be a representative of the people. We need someone to voice the concerns of the people. This needs to be a group of people (the government) that will work for the country and solve the problems it is going through (without putting loads of cash in their pockets).

The political leaders are no good. Look where they have led us to? Corruption, bickering and power play have made us one of the least developed countries in the world. Even with their joint seven party agenda right now no one will believe that they have reformed. It is just a slight hope of the people but that too will be short-lived once they have the opportunity to grab power.

The Maoists will not be accepted as leaders. The terror they have bought will not be easily forgotten. They have escalated the situation in Nepal. Right now in the villages people live in absolute fear.

So, who shall lead this nation? Who will solve the problems? Who can the people depend on?

If anyone can think of someone please let me know. Our country needs someone to lead – for the people. I will promise you I will support them 110 percent.

24 Comments »

this looks like a grade 6 essay

Comment by b — 5/11/2005 @ 4:26 pm

if it is a grade six essay then please tell me the ‘easy’ answer to this question

Comment by suvecha — 5/11/2005 @ 4:40 pm

Roryal family may be the part of your proud history, sorry, not mine.

Comment by XYZ — 5/11/2005 @ 6:40 pm

Suvechhaji,
Any person reading your write-ups already knows that you are just posing a rhetoric question, Kikaso ta? You are bitten by new generation bug. The answer will be ” New Generation Hold Power”, Haina ra Suvechhaji? Politcal naiviety not withstanding in the article, I support you, let the old generation leadership be supplanted by the new one.

Comment by Vishu — 5/11/2005 @ 6:59 pm

Yes, it is a good article. But to do all that we need to have an early election of the lower house.

Comment by Sujan Rajbhandary — 5/11/2005 @ 7:14 pm

I appreciate Suvechha Ji’s article. She has tried to express her feeling may not be professionaly written but she has a given a thought…

Comment by Nepali Akash — 5/11/2005 @ 10:46 pm

The easy answer is you and I , the Nepali people. We need to create a new party with new faces ( not from any other corrputed parties)with new vision with solid foudations on People’s voices. The party that fills the inspirations of the Nepali people.

What I am trying to say here is we need a 21th century party who can think about the future of Nepal. The past failed parties were created in the Ranas era, I give credit them for throwinf the Ranas system, but they lacked the vision. In 2007, the old parties put the Rana (PM) after throwing the Ranas system. So you can guess, these parties never had faith on true People’ power.

The new party has to understand the role of India not only in Nepal but also all the SA region. We Nepalis must be in position to deal with India rather than blaming India for our failed old leaderships from the Old parties (NC or UML). I think most Leaders of India are willing to open discuss with Nepal in any case. We must build a good relationship with India which can be done without loosing the National Interest of Nepal.

Comment by ashupati — 5/12/2005 @ 2:04 am

i am really pissed off by such rhetorics. leaders are bad. parties are not good. monarchy is needed. is there anything new you guys could say?

from where does leader emanate? does s/he come from other planets or is the product of our own society?

why is monarchy needed? what is there to be proud of? why hasn’t nepal progressed despite the monarchy ruling since last 300 years? have you read history of nepal apart from school history-text books?

Comment by jhyau — 5/12/2005 @ 2:13 am

The shah has made a great contribution, in Nepal history with the help of the Nepali people, uniting the Nepal. We cannot ignore the facts. Yes, There are ill practices in the Monarchy system in Nepal. We need to correct them with voices of Nepali people. The monarch should come under- laws just like any orther Nepali people. No one can be above the laws. I personally think that the house of Gorkha will last for a fews more decade in Nepal.

Comment by Reality — 5/12/2005 @ 3:37 am

Looking for answers is a verticla thinking….and sometimes there are no answers…

When you are taking about a leader, i think King G is a very good leader..as he is successfully doing what he wanted to do..

..I dont know if he has made the right decesion or not.. but looking at the leaders we have.. he is the best of the lot…

few of us love to live in a hypothetical world.. if we had this.. if we had that…
Well if aunti had balls… she would be uncle..

…. you have to ask yourself what is the “ROOT cause”

Comment by b — 5/12/2005 @ 4:59 am

Boys and girls of Nepal, is it this hard to find someone?

we should think more and come up with solution instead of saying this column is naive. Even in naivety it brings up question that is on the minds of all Nepali people.

Who will lead from young generation, will you? Too much talk no action

Comment by shiv — 5/12/2005 @ 6:29 am

It is not a good leader that we need. What we need is a good political system. We need a system with well functioning democratic institutions and implementation of laws. We need a system where corrupts would be made accountable for their actions and punished by law. In such as system with strong institutions even a mediocre person (be it Girija or Madhav Nepal) would perfom well. He will perform well, because the system will make him peform well. US president Bush, is a butt of joke, but still their system is so good that he is doing quite good and is very popular (at least in his country US).

Comment by mangal — 5/12/2005 @ 6:36 am

mate,

all systems are good.. its the people that abuse the system

Comment by b — 5/12/2005 @ 10:05 am

I have been reading this site [for] a month. I was controlling myself from not writing my views in your blog. But, I could not resist the temptation.

I am surprized to find many KG supporters. You kathmandu elites, you were the one who were on the streets demanding hanging to your current beloved hero- right after the Royal Massacre. I am fully aware that the Nepali Congress made a mockerey of the Multi-party democracy. But, I am surprized to see in [this] blog that everyone is blaming all the political parties who represented in the house of parliament. Why not point the finger to the guilty only.

Further, I am surprized, to see nobody blaming the RPP. Remember?? What S. B. Thapa had said soon after the election? ” Satta ko sancho aba Ra. Pra. Pa. Ko Hat ma Chha.” They were the one who were termed as “Musa” by the then Prime Minister L. B. Chand. Each and every wrongdoings during the multiparty days emanated from these Pancheys of the Panchayat era. All the horsetrading were done to keep these greedy guys intact.

Everyone who writes in your blog expects the leaders to be honest, staying in a rented house, registering their children in the village schools, simple looking, wearing a Slippers and moving on the streets hastily to catch a Public transport. And, finally these so called elites wish the politicians, as lawmakers, made rules and regulations to suite them and their God fathers. They can digest a smugler hiding behind the black glasses of Mercedes, Prado and Pajero but their stomach gets upset in no time when the lamakers of the country are waived of the import duty in one piece of vehicle.

These Slaves can digest a towering building of some Made and Manange and always aspire for a peg of whisky from them. But, alas! irony on the contrary- they can not digest a lawmaker buying 4 annas of land and having erected a single storeyed building in Ktm. They think that all the people of the country, except the politicians of Bahudal era, have a birth right of taking bribe, smugling, Looting, encroaching govt. properties etc. If every one in the country is of such nature then how can you find a good leader?

They are members of our society and we are the ones who voted for them. So, guys try to have glance on your tainted face before pointing a finger towards the political figures. See the beauty of democracy- we can throw a veteran leader in the next election, if we thought they did not live up to our expectation. But, you foolish elite of Ktm. Do you think you can through the authoritarian rules of your two Godfathers (KG and Prachanda).

Why I mentioned these two in the same category? Do you know why Yadu Gautam (an UML candidate for the 2056polls) of Rukum was killed by the Maoist? You guys try to find some truth by youself too. Don’t just get carried away by NTV and RN and the poor Rising Nepal (Most trustworthy media for you). Late Yadu had seen Prachanda coming out of Nirmal Niwas one early morning of 2055 winter.

They do not make a hue and cry when Some very rich relative of KG gets 12 Million for treatment abroad. And the other day the very suspicious mass screams at the leaders and cadres who received a sum of 50,000 to 250000 for Dashain Celebration. Now think seriously- Were these people not asked by the Maoist to flee their houses? Did they have houses in Ktm like you elites do? Were they not threatened of their life? Were they been able to harvest their crops? Were they able to carry their properties and the livestocks along with them?

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!! they were the internal refugees.

But, still you elites try to bully those ill-fated bretheren of yours. Congrats!!! you hypocrites, carry on this way and you will see a day is meant for you too.

Then We will laugh at you.

So, Suvechha! do not worry-leaders (of your likes) will definitely come in to the fore at the crunch hours. This is what the history of the world tells. Don’t play a dangerous game to find someone like the KG. He would have better ruled just after Prithvinarayan Sah not in the 21st century.

OK thanks for giving me this opportunity.

A unbiased middle class

Comment by R. Pande — 5/12/2005 @ 5:24 pm

It is saddening to see that the younger generation of Nepal is such a confused lot.

Nepal has a leader, a wise and intelligent leader, who is committed to multiparty democracy and good governance. Unfortunately we are so bogged up with the lies and corruption of the last fifteen years that we begin to feel that even someone who might be genuinely concerned about Nepal cannot be trusted.

We have given the political parties 15 years to establish good goverance and 9 years to stop the Maoists. Can Nepal or I rather say the younger generation give more corruption time to these hoodlums to tear our beloved country to bits and then hand it over to India on a Golden platter, like Sikkim. The younger generation should realize that it is they who has to bear the burden of national debt and pay for the billions that was robbed.

Ask yourself can you afford this. At this time we need PEACE and stability. His Majesty has said “Give me 3 years to bring about peace and a functional multiparty democracy”, is that bad. We gave them 15 years why not 3 years to His Majesty.

I regret I am disillusioned by the political forces that cannot think for themselves and need other countries to tell them how they should behave.

Comment by Sunil — 5/12/2005 @ 5:50 pm

Sunil,
“His Majesty” may have said give him three years to bring about peace —but look at the tactics he has been using. Taking immesne measures to silence the youth, imprison nay and everyone who dares question him or has the ability to possible question him does not make for a peaceful soecity.
If “Peace” is synonomous with repression; torture; corruption then yes, by all means support the monarcy–but if you choose to do so, you do it at your peril!

We do not need other countries to tell us how to behave- Suvecha has a point, there needs to be a younger generation of leaders who understand that the People of Nepal need and deserve a change of guard – the Kathmandu Elite need to get off their high horse and relaise that just becuase they have the ability to continue to live their lives the way they have always done does not mean that the state of the country is good – the real struggles of the Nepali people are lived and toiled in the villages outside of Kathmandu.

Many in Kathmandu do not understand the plight of the people in the villages who are caught between the cross hairs of the Maoists, Royal Nepal Army and the new mobs of Vigilantes that have sprung up—what has “His Majesty” done for them in securing the peace so far that we should give him the benefit of the doubt?

Comment by Kripa — 5/12/2005 @ 9:32 pm

R. Pande,
Be practical and have your priorities.

Priority Number 1: Save our Nepal from the Terrorists. If these terrorists have their way, there will be no Nepal. Don’t take it for granted that ‘Nothing will happen to Nepal’. The threat is real, realise it. 12000 plus deaths should be enough for anyone to feel the ‘gravity of the situation’.

Priority Number 2: Have a Real Democracy. Democracy cannot be built on the foundation of Corruption, Bribery, Nepotism ( Like a friendship cannot be built on the foundation of lies & dishonesty ). If we let Corruption pervade, the real and wise leaders will not rise within the ranks in a political parties. Corruption will not allow the elected representatives to work for their constituency. Corruption allows people like Sujata Koiralla to rise in the ranks of a party. Nepal will not have wise and courageous leaders and will be a big loss to the Nation.

Priority Number 3: Economy. We need food & shelter, so we need jobs and business. We need to find ways to increase Nepal’s GDP. We have to facilitate trade with all neighbours.

You need to understand the full consequences of corruption. It is an unforgivable sin.

Comment by Bir Ghale — 5/12/2005 @ 10:51 pm

R. Pande,

Cool down. You must understand the role of the Shah in Nepal. You cannot ingore the fact the A Great leader of Nepal Uniter became from the Shah Monarchy.

What we need to learn is to make wise decission when we have an opportunity. Look at what your People’s parties what they have brought in Nepal, they brought Pajero Culture, dividing culture among the Nepalis people, no respect for law i.e. GPK even show the respect for constitutional body( corruption Control) which is created with his system. Now you tell us they did have an opportunity to water the democracy in Nepal.

What your elected leader did when the whole BK family were killed? Your MKN ran away from commission to investigate, your GPK PM did not raise any issues to investigate Royal killing in a Scientific way. Now , He barks like a Grand Design. You middle class are fooled wherever you from either KTm or POK or any villages of Nepal.

The parties must take a full responsibility of their miscalulations, and poor decisions that they have made so far in Nepal. I will give crdit of MOHan MOhan Adikari era, that was the only time Nepal had peace and hope for the lower class people of Nepal. Look at his economic policy the Most popular ” Build our villages ousselves”. Other than that you tell me what NC did in Nepal. What UML did In Nepal? A simple answer is corrption, corruption corrution, confused Nepalis, created Conflict in the Nepali society and so on.

These two main parties are not democratics themselves, look your GPk how long he has been Chairman of NC. Look at you MKN, how long he has been in Secreatary even he cannot lead the party the way he supposed to. Your UML went in government, under KG’ terms that was right when the UML is in Power. How come it not right now? It is the same way..

Please stop calling fools to other I hope you are a smart person from a middle class (NC) or UML.That’s where dual charactersic comes. You are bringing the ideas of hate, with the Middle class or lower class or rulling class notion.

I believe we all Nepalis should to treated In First-Class standards. Not with your middle -class views.

A Nepali standard view point.

Comment by Pashupati — 5/13/2005 @ 12:28 am

R. Pande,

Kudos. Your analysis is enligtening. In fact you are one of the very few who are worth reading in this blog. Otherwise, rest are either without any perspective or are spam created by G shah and company to fizzle out the issues.
i am interested in your further analyses/perspectives. as i don’t have your mail add could you write to me at rajniti@gmail.com
thanks.

Comment by jhyau — 5/13/2005 @ 1:43 am

MAY I MAKE IT PERFECTLY CLEAR THAT I AM NOT A SUPPORTER OF KG AND WHAT HE IS DOING TO THE COUNTRY AT THE MOMENT.

I am perfectly aware of his history and the amount of curroption he has been involved in during the past. His goal is not for the ‘best of the country’ and those that blindly believe it are ignorant.

Royals and their supporters (yes the panches) have been rampant in stealing from the country for centuries. The leaders did it for a decade. If we can let the Royals do it for centuries why not support leaders that will be true to the Nepali people? Do you think you might be able to give the politicians another chance at improving the country?

Comment by suvecha — 5/13/2005 @ 9:19 am

In democracies we do not elect leaders, we do elect our representatives.

In fact we, the democratic people are the leaders. Our representatives get their mandate to advocate our case just for a period of time. If they fail to work for us properly, we will not reelect them.

As long as the young generation of Nepal is looking for new leaders, they disqualify themselves as not being mature for democracy. The wish to be guided and lead in fact means to look for a chance to avoid responsibility.

Only if the people of Nepal understand, that they, by being uncritically obedient, in fact have been allowing their leaders to mistreat the country for centuries, only then slowly there will be a chance to change the situation.

It is quite obvious, that in Nepal, the absence of democratic examples has lead to a failure of the last democratic experiment. In the last fifteen years we could just see the expansion of monarchies.

Suddenly there was a Congress Monarchy, a UML Monarchy and so on. Nepal became a kingdom of 100000 kings during democracy. But it wasn’t all in vain, as just by this example of failure, slowly the common man could understand, that it needs more than just greed for political power to be a good ruler.

In the global community of nations, one thing can be clearly seen, the countries, who got rid of their monarchies early or were able to restrict their influence on mere representative aereas of the state are in fact the countries, which are best developed, guarantee their citizens the biggest amount of freedom and are prospering economically .

In history monarchy is typical for countries, where the citizens are either not aware of their rights or too uneducated to demand them effectively. I think both is true for Nepal.

My personal hope is, that some women, who seem to be the last group of the society not completely drowned in dirty powergames are raising to political responsibility and offer the chance to the people of Nepal to be guided in a human and respectful way.

May courage return to the people of Nepal, King Kong

Comment by King Kong — 5/13/2005 @ 7:09 pm

Very well said:
“In democracies we do not elect leaders, we do elect our representatives.”
“Suddenly there was a Congress Monarchy, a UML Monarchy and so on. Nepal became a kingdom of 100000 kings during democracy.”

Suvecha, your comment that ” Royals and their supporters (yes the panches) have been rampant in stealing from the country for centuries. The leaders did it for a decade. If we can let the Royals do it for centuries why not support leaders that will be true to the Nepali people? …” is ridiculous at best.

Royals in every country had a rich lifestyle and in Nepal (as per Nepali standard) it was not an exception. As per recent forbes list of rich royals (King Fahd Saudi $ 22 Billion, Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah $20 Billion, Queen Elizabeth II $720 million etc) should not make us believe that “Royals are Corrupt”. Would you conclude that these ultra rich royal stole money from their country? — I don’t think so.

We cannot condone corruption by these political parties. An educated person like you Suvecha seems to support Corruption is extremely sad thing.

Comment by Bir Ghale — 5/13/2005 @ 8:02 pm

Well said Bir ghale: “Royals in every country had a rich lifestyle and in Nepal…$ 22 Billion, Sultan Haji Hassanal… $20 Billion, Queen Elizabeth II $720 million etc…”

I support you we should add a few more luxury cars to KG. We should give some 24 billion dollars to KG so that our KG will be the richest. We should offer phd to his son, so that our future king will be the “wisest.” Thanks for your forbes report; how can a god bishnu’s avatar be poorer than a muslim or christian king/queeens? thank you Ghaleji

Comment by ramita — 5/14/2005 @ 11:35 am

well said ramita.

ghale:
kings of sultans surely made money exploiting the natural resources the country possese. those resources are public resources but what they are doing is using it for private benefit. and what they are doing to their people? are these democratic countries? women in saudi arabia donot even have voting right. you want nepal to be in the same standar!! wealth to G and co, and for people neither wealth nor right (even to say that i’m hungry)!!!

the monarchy in englnad sucked wealth from all over the world, if not from their own country in the past. thats their accumulated wealth. and more imporatanly comparing england and nepal is comparing marble and a basket ball. come up with a figure what percentage of national income does england pays to its royalty and compare that with the same percentage what G and co snatches away from us.

the monarchy is now not talked about just because they dont interfere in the people’s domain. do you know what the parliament of england did to their king when he tried to interfere in politics? they just got rid of him. our parliamentarians should also have the gut to ditch this G.

people of nepal have happily paid for the luxury of birendra and his family. why?? because he didn’t try to steal and kill, which your favourite G is doing, do you understand mr. ghale.

Comment by g.c.m. — 5/14/2005 @ 1:40 pm

Poverty Reduced in Nepal, Really?

Nepal Poverty: Correlation Between Democracy and Development

By Govinda Bahadur Ghale
Comment of the Moment

The 11% reduction in poverty was a surprise, but long-term economic policies take time to show effect. The effect of ongoing conflict and economic and political isolation that King Gyanendra has put Nepal in, will not be felt right now. Give 2-3 more years, then the true effect will begin to show. We should not forget that numbers are deceiving; Saddam Hussein won 99% votes every time there was an election. I do not have any data to confirm the increase in income, whether it is increase in real income or nominal income.

I tried to open some documents from the National Planning Commission website but it did not open. Right now Nepal is going through the 10th Plan, and I had the opportunity to read the ninth plan. The plan was awesome, and even if 10% of the plan was implemented, I can assure you, Nepal would be comparable to some South East Asian countries.

From my observation, there is some positive correlation between democracy and development. There are some exceptions like, China and Singapore (which once upon a time was somewhat autocratic, and it was during those times it made such huge economic progress).

I believe that democracy provides opportunity for people to get involved in decision making, it empowers them. Forget increase in income, true development happens when people have opportunities and can decide for themselves. All of you please read the UNDP Human Development Report 2004. It is such a good report, and explains how economic, political and social environment effect economic development. It is an easy read, and it will give you the true economic picture of our country.

If you have read Developmental Economics, then you all must have come across the statement “A country is poor because it is poor.” This statement says that poverty is a vicious cycle, due to the lack of resources and human capital poor countries will always remain poor. If you think about it for a moment, then it is true to a certain extent. Just give some thought to it.

UWB will be posting some of the best comments (based on arguments presented in the write-up) as a separate blog in Democracy Wall catagory. This is one example. We believe in pluralism. Posting a comment as a separate blog does not necessarily mean our endorsement of the ideas presented in the write-up. This comment was originally posted by the writer in this post: Look Ma, My Poverty Reduced

27 Comments »

Govinda Bahadur Ghale says from his observation,there is some positive correlation between democracy and development. It is true there is a littel correlation between development and democracry. It is a debatable issue for development scholars.

By the way Gale Jee, have done emperical works to show that there is signinficant relationship with development and Democracy. I think with my some emperical works there is not much contribute of democracy to the development. Still we can aruge what are development and democracy? In economics, there are always expections just you have mentioned in your comments.

Another issue I like to raise here that Gale Jee says he believes that democracy provides opportunity for people to get involved in decision making, it empowers them. Yes , it is true if the majority of peolple can judge the actions of leaders what is right or wrong. I think in our Nepal case, the majority of people are not enough informed to make a decision. We cannot make a wise decision thorugh participating in elections process simply we do not have a maority of educated people.

With my own observation in my villages, political leaders used to buy the votes with some wine(raski) adn a liitle money to win the election. How we can say that Democracy sysmtem will help to choose a good leader in Nepal? I am not suggesting the democracy systme is wrong itself, but we must be alert how this systm function in Nepal? My suggestion is to improve our human capital in Nepal which will bring democracy, wealth and peace in lives of ours.

By the way I like to ask you a question, Does development help democracy or democracy help development in Nepal?

Comment by Pashupati — 5/7/2005 @ 12:15 am

ghale,

have you heard of a guy called amartya sen? he won nobel prize. and he has this crazy idea called human development index. ring a bell? i heard him once say that poverty is the lack of freedom to choose. sen must be crazy. only that he has empirical evidence to back his claims (and he won a sorta big prize) and you don’t/haven’t.

if you have the time, read his book called ‘development as freedom.’

and pashupati, if you could post your “emperical” work for us to see, it would be great. its not only sufficient to delude yourself when making claims – you have to get reviewed by peers too.

Comment by rukum — 5/7/2005 @ 1:55 am

Pashupati jee, I have to disagree on your views that only educated people make good and informed decisions. Let me remind you that one can acquire knowledge through experience and observation too.

As you said people need information to make decisions; if you think that way then you should not disagree with the fact that usually media prospers in democracy. Media is the biggest and the richest source of information for the public. Politicians can lie to people 2-3 times but once people have experience and information they are capable of making wise decisions. I agree that politicians did win elections in some instaces by distributing money, but believe me Pashupati jee if democracy had survived longer, politicians would not be able to survive on that tactic. The best thing about democracy is that people have the power to make decisions. Recently BJP lost elections in India, outsiders were amazed but I talked to many Indian nationals, and they said that people in rural India could not enjoy the economic progress made by the country, because it only concentrated in the urban regions.

In a democracy each person in the country has a chance to come to power, if one is capable then one can always become a prime minister or a minister. It is not that you have to be born as a SHAH or born in a wealthy autocratic family.

Comment by Govinda Bahadur Ghale — 5/7/2005 @ 1:56 am

rukum,

I am reading Amartya Sen’s book during the summer. Thanks.

Comment by Govinda Bahadur Ghale — 5/7/2005 @ 2:07 am

I go for GB Ghale. “Bihari Shaili” and “Bihari” democracy have been over used metaphors in the past decades in Nepal. Royalists, democrats, Maoists all used and abused them so much that they carry little analytical value. I agree with Ghale that the media plays a great role; and somehow mediates/moderates, to use statistical jargons, the relationship between polity and development. Also in the United States during the last presidential election, the issues of vote buying for hasis/cocainne, tempering with voters’ list etc featured prominiently. I only could chuckle comparing all this to our own democracy. But it works somehow and some ways…To take an example, when GP Koirala went to the mid-term polls in 1994 looking for a two-third majority, he was duely punished; people just sent his party to the second largest. It works somehow….

Comment by Save Nepal (savenepal@gmail.com) — 5/7/2005 @ 4:12 am

Indeed, I read a little about Sen( I think this is a great Indian economist) in one of my economics classes, but a long time ago, I cannot recall much of his ideas in development process. If I remember correclty he talks about national saving stuffs.

Ghale Jee, I am not suggesting the democracy system is bad itself, but suggesting how you implement the values, norms and so on of the decomcracy system. I think most of us Nepalis have witnessed painful implementation of democracy in Nepal where most of corrupted ( illed-minded) leaders frquently rules all the time. I wonder do we honestly believe that GP, MKN, Deuba,B. Gautam are honest leaders of Nepal? Didn’t they had a chance to make better democracy system in Nepal? These leaders who refuged to go for the Constitutional Assembly? These leaders called themselves belive in people’ votes? You, I and alike must the raise these issues rather than supporting blindly Yesterday’s failure leaders. The democracy is beautiful thing in Nepal until it works on favor of the Nepali people.

I strongly believe that educated people generally make wise decisions, and have the ability ot analyze the information what they are getting. I honestly think that Nepali people must put emphasis on educating their sons, daughters, brothers, and friends from all sides of the society.

Ranas knew the power of education, so they did put effort to educate the Nepali people, The Shahs tryied some to educate people, but not on a quality people because they could afford to send their family memebr abroad like the UK to study. Even so- called people’s representatives (in 14 years)lacked to bring a solid policy toward educating people, rather they focused to send their sons, daughters, abroad at the costs of the Nepalis people. You asked Bharat Mohan Adkikary , how many his relatives he has sent to China? Likewise you asked to Govida Raja Jopshi ?

I came from a farming family who have no formal education therefore I have a great desire to improve the education system of Nepal which ultimatley benefit all the Nepalis, but not Only who could afford to send abroad for schooling.

I belive in tomorrow, but the past failed leaders, in Nepal ,believe in yesterday. I honesty think that We need to look at new approach to the past failed leaders. They were tested in 2017 and how We all have witnessed again in last 14 years. I was very young to know all about Panchayat But enough old to know the last 14 years. Let work on build a better Nepal for the Nepalis. The people must be involved, there is no questions. The question remain how we can involve the Nepalis in building the better Nepal.

Ghale Jee, I think you still have not responded my previous two questions on my first comments on your articles. For Rukum Jee, please post your e-mail address I will e-mail you my research. But it not published or anything that is plausible, it was just one of parts of homework assignments. Again, the development had many definations, so it varies among persons, therefore what I call development may differs from you and others.

Comment by pashupati — 5/7/2005 @ 4:47 am

There is no questions, the medai is cornerstone of democracy. I’d like to raise the questions how many people have access to the media like Kantipuronline, Nepalnews, blog.com.np, the kathmandu post, Dristi, Deshantar and so on? By the way, my favorite the Nepali Times, I do not want to miss it.

I think at lase the People must be able to interpret the information that they are getting like what sources, by whom, to whom and so on. In my village, we donot get kantipur or Dristi o r that matter no medias news that write about my village problems or issues? So called the Medias are for the elite group of Kathmadu’ s people who have better access to the media than they rules the country.

Comment by Pashupati — 5/7/2005 @ 5:28 am

Pashupati jee,

I already answered your question, I believe that democracy helps development. I would be glad if you could email me your report too. Pashupati jee, some of the information you provide is too hard to believe. Where did you get this information that Shah’s and Ranas tried to educate the people??? If I recall correctly then it was Chandra Shumsher who said “Mailey aafnai khutta ma bancharo haney” after he started Tri Chandra college. Forget the Shahs’ they did nothing for thirty years, if they had done anything for the people then the 1990 popular democratic movement would never have happened.
Pashupati jee, I know there was bad leadership during the democracy days but please do not start losing faith in democracy itself. It was better than what KG is doing right now. At least you had the power to decide your fate, not anymore. Corruption can always be controlled and people can always be held responsible for their actions, if constitutional bodies (election commission, CIAA, Judicial System)are nurtured. Please do not stop believing in the system, future of the country depends on the hope and faith of the youth.

Comment by Govinda Bahadur Ghale — 5/7/2005 @ 7:58 am

Pashupati:

Many pople belive in tomorrow. I appreciate your idea that
we need to look at new approaches. You say: “They were tested in 2017 and how We all have witnessed again in last 14 years.” Whom are you referring you? Who failed?

I don’t believe that you were a “very young” to remember the Panchayat. Cleary, you remember 2017 BS. Yes, we need a new thing, unlike of the past 14 years, but you can not brand the 2017-2046 as a brand new.

Comment by Save Nepal (savenepal@gmail.com) — 5/7/2005 @ 8:02 am

Really,Its poverty or poor?

Comment by sunilkumar — 5/7/2005 @ 9:26 am

Sorry for misspelled Ghale jee, Indeed , I was trying to say that The RANAs did nothing to educate the people, the Shah of the Panchayat did better than the Ranas , a 14 years rulers did not even try to amend the education system which was initiated at the Panchayat’ time. I am a 2046 slc graduate, so I consider myself a panchatyati stytem educated in terms of SLC. Indeed, the Panchayat had produced great SLC students who are now professionally employed around the world i.e. Kulchandra Gautam who is employed at the UN system. Please do not consider here that I am suggesting the Panchayati education system was the best.

Regrading the development, would you please show me where I can find that a Democracy system helps to economic development growth. I have found that government effectiveness, regulatory quality, rule of law, control of corruption, environment sustainability, and pysical infrastructure, human capitals, economic policy both taxes and the monetary policy and so on help to the economic development of a country. I assume that you are aruging that so called developed nations have better all the variables I have mentioned earlier, and happened to be the democractics society more or less. Therefore the democracy helps to economic growth. It is all I am assuming that your point. I may wrong here. Or I can argue that India is one of the bigest democratic country in the world still far away from developed nation. But Bharat is improving its economic grwoth at past pace, so China which is a just opposite of India in terms of democractic sytem.
Therefore, I really cannot say that democracy is the only way to improve the economic development of a country.

With this in mind, in the context of my country, Nepal. We have experienced a failed multiple party system which have failed to prove that the system can fulfill basic dream or needs of ordinary Nepalis like education, health, communication and so on. On the other hand, Nepal have painful experienced in those black days of Panchayat.Even you could not speak anything you disagrees with your PANCH.

The last 14 years periods was very important for all the Nepalis who have put their faiths in the Multi-party systm.Unfortunatly, the corrupted, greedy, ill-minded, short- term opportunists party leaders took advantage of our innocent farmers, and villagers.

Here is really an interesting thing, when they(political corrupted leaders) were in Power 3 months ago, this constition was working, when they are out of power this constitution became non-fuctional. To me 3 months ago also they were not elected by the people so I do not give a damn for their arguements that they were people’s representative. I personally think most of leaders of NC and UML are # 1 enemy of the democracy sytem of Nepal. They dis-solved the representative body and wanted to stay in power for ever. How do you look this drama? On the other hand, so called people’s war people, they are killing our own Nepalis brothers and sisters to gain the political power. On June 1, 2001 my great KB and the head of the state got killed , No one dare to investigate in a scientific way. So called then elected leaders were hidding beneath bed. In short it is a messy in My country, I donot know when I can wake up to clean all these the dirty people who are adulrating our society. Therefore, I ask to discuss to find a new approach that will purfify my Nation, Nepal and Nepali. Wake up my brothers, and sisters. Lets start a heathly communication from this site. Namste.

Comment by pashupati — 5/7/2005 @ 11:01 am

Read at least two books to know poverty if you are grown up in so-called city of Nepal like Kathmandu. Otherwise, you must be familiar with poverty. Just compare yourself and anybody in your neighbor who did not pass SLC. Further, just compare yourself with a family of so-called untouchables, and see the difference. What do you do to reduce the gap between yourself and the others. That’s the bottomline and unfortunately, failed to understand by “sahariya babus ” of Nepal. If you are really like to know about Nepal’s poverty analysis, check this website http://www.nepalresearch. com and click on Heidelberg Papers in South Asian and Comparative Politics (HPSACP).

Comment by republic nepal — 5/8/2005 @ 3:00 am

Hi Republic Nepal;

I am from a poor family, I donot need to read a book that has written from a wealthy nationality in order to about the plight of poor nepali family. Are u dancing in the tone of INGO in Nepal?

Comment by Pashupati — 5/8/2005 @ 4:04 am

Repubic Nepal,

If you compare people of Kathmandu from Heidelberg,Guess what you see the big disparity? Regarding touchable or un-touchable , it’s your perception. To me all human beings are touchable.

Republic Nepal, I donot get it your points? you went to untouchable to SlC passed, to poverty? What it means? Read my previous comment carefully and raise the issues you if disagree.

Do you think you only know about Nepal and Nepali people? I have friends from all sides of corner of the Nepali society.

I am from a poor family, I donot need to read a book that has written from a wealthy nationality in order to know about the plight of poor Nepali family. Are u dancing in the tone of INGO in Nepal?

Comment by Pashupati — 5/8/2005 @ 4:17 am

Pashupati jee,

You can argue that KC Gautam is a SLC graduate of the Panchayat era, and I can equally argue that Baburam and Prachanda are also more or less of the same era. What I am trying to say is, by pinpointing out some exceptions, you cannot credit the whole system for it. My argument for democracy is the same. Some so called leaders tarnished democracy, but there were poeple like Ganesh Man Singh and Madan Bhandari too. I have read so many times in this blog site, and I would like to remind you again; Democracy is a process, for it to run smoothly and efficiently it needs time and adjustments. Tell me honestly, if there had been an election would you have voted for these leaders again??? I say, hell no…..because you would have learnt from experience. But, if KG remains oppressive, will you be able to vote him out of power? Never.

You just cannot claim that democracy failed in Nepal. We were just depressed with the progress we made, our expectations were too high when democracy was restored in 2046BS. All of us thought it would work like magic, and we failed to realize that it is just another system. But most of us had not lost hope, and we are still hoping and struggling to get democracy restored.

Pashupati jee, I never claimed that democracy was the only way to improve economic development of the country. I was saying it provides leverage to the development efforts through broader/mass participation, free speech/thought and empowerment.

Comment by Govinda Bahadur Ghale — 5/8/2005 @ 6:43 am

Ghale Jee,

I think we are on the boat, I would like, at least, to think if they are other alternatives to these failed leaders in Nepal. I agree with 110 percent with democracy. I think we shold look if they are any other options to implements of cornerstones of democracy, like press freedom, elections, right to assmley and so on.

Comment by pashupati — 5/8/2005 @ 9:29 am

Pashupati jee,

There are alternatives for people but not for democracy. We can either live poor and free or accept poverty under KG.

Comment by Govinda Bahadur Ghale — 5/8/2005 @ 10:00 am

Ghale Jee,

We always can argue that what’s the best way to protect of norms, values of democracy system. There many forms of democracy in the world, I think in Nepal case the form best of democracy system has to be found yet. You look at US presendential systems, the French system, German System, and like the UK system which I belived what Nepal has or had.

I hope you are not misreading me, When I pointed out few things of failed leaders of both NC and UML. That does not me I support the KG system.
If you are a truely believer of democracy in Nepal why donot you raise issues of the misleading of corrupted leaders? How long Nepal can afford to put those corrupted leaders in the power without elction?

I asked you, when Deuba is appointed PM by the KG, it is okay.And it is democratic. If the KG fired Deuba it is undemocrastic? I donot understand what’s the logic behind this? I have frequently mentioned this in previous my comment. Once this Deuba and the group of other parties dissolved the elected body. They are no longer people’s representatives. You can aruge their party leaders, but not the average Nepali people’s representatives.

For the KG, he is the head of the state, you believe it or not, In my opinion, He is palying his games with legaly. Here I means that Deuba and other party disolved the elected body and gave it to the KG. I heard that when you disolved the elected body, you must go to election within 3 or 6 months which has never happened. The Deuba and other parties went to the KG, advised the KG that the deuba government cannot hold the general election within 6 months; therefore Deuba asked for his long tenure of his government without the election. The result you know all.

As the KG’s terms the “Incompentent Deuba, Fired” the silly Deuba he became the PM again with the KG’s terms. Again the Deuba fired with the KG’s term.So you tell me the answer? What should think? as a college student, I can clearly see the points, but I am not going to support NC nor UML leaderships.

If you think there is no alternative system of implementing democracy, that’s your opinion which I fully respect your opinion. But In my opinion, the best alternative implementing democracy system has to come in Nepal, yet. Please feel free to comment.

Comment by pashupati — 5/8/2005 @ 11:54 am

Pashupati jee,

This comment did not start on a political note, at least I was not talking about the corrupt leaders. I have my own opinions about the corrupt leaders, as does everyone else. If we start talking about them then we will start going in circles, lets not talk about the past, it is not going to change. I can empathize with your frustration against the corrupt leaders; we should be planning for a better future now and learn from our past mistakes. Maybe we should devise a democracy that makes the public more powerful, it is our fault that we let all those leaders do whatever they did. We did not mount a single organized protest when the “Pajero” bill was passed, instead we watched in ’shock and awe’ as the members of the parliament unanimously clapped their hands when that thing was passed. Regarding the monarch, they are more of a liability to the country, their intellectual capacity does not deserve the respect the people of Nepal give them. One way or another, they are always meddling with democracy. We need some dynamic leaders who can take the palace’s grip out of the RNA, and make people more powerful. That should be our focus the next time we have democracy in our country.

We have the opportunity to start fresh again. get rid of the corrupt blood and bring in some one with a new vision and values.

Comment by Govinda Bahadur Ghale — 5/8/2005 @ 12:43 pm

Ghale Jee,

I think your brought up the KG issue? Can you please answer the questions that I have raised about the Deubans and other political parties?

Comment by pashupati — 5/8/2005 @ 9:14 pm

These political parties even could handle the parilimentary system? How could I believe they will handle the RNA without the KG? Ghale jee

Comment by pashupati — 5/8/2005 @ 9:20 pm

Pashupatiji,

A bit about the bunch of the people called the RNA. From the day when they could not save a single member of KB’s family, I have given up calling them Royal. The then army commaner told the investigation commitee that “it was not a duty of his men (sorry, I don’t want to call it the RNA).”

They were trained for chakari ( reflection of which can be seen in their daily communication practices). They were not trained for professionalism. So they don’t qualify to be named an “Army.”

Look at their final hypocricy: one army commander publicly said before the first emergency that “they are ready to fight the Maoists, but they needed an all-party support.” Not a bad idea, I thought then. Now look at them, they want every one to be silent or jailed. Look how they function: the world knows by now that this bunch called the RNA is more gruesome in extrajudicial killings and rights abuse than the Maoist terrorists. Look at their resistence to investigations; they want a free licensce to kill the people. Evidently, they are not for Nepal and Nepali. Hence I hate this phrase called “Royal Nepalese Army.”

How do you feel in New York? When one of the American professors I am in touch with emails me showing the Nepal “army” abuse records, my head bows down in shame. I know I am typing all this in emotion. Believe me sometimes I fell like disbanding these hooligans here and now.

Also, don’t forget that the army high brass is related to KG (or any other Kings in history) by blood or marital ties. You might ask what about D. Gurungs. Look at his strategic position at the public relations office. Dictators are smart people. It gives the people feeling that the army is more than Shahs…Ranas…Thapas. It is not. It sounds contradictory, elite containment and distribution of selective benifits is the common factor to all dictatots in the world.

Having painted this bleak picture, the question is: Ke Garne?? Unfortunatley, I don’t have answers. But I trust in people’s ability, their power to make mistakes, learn, make mistakes, relearn. They should be given chance. We should return to democracy; a free enviornment where people can discus their views freely should be created. Only then perhaps can we find out solutions. It is slow and painful, but perhaps in the interest of all of us.

Comment by Save Nepal (savenepal@gmail.com) — 5/8/2005 @ 11:58 pm

Save Nepal, good points, I agree with your view on RNA. I am not the supporter of the KG period. But as a Nepali, I feel I have a responsibilty to speak up agaist what I think are wrong. But It is just my opinion, but not the fact.

I think you agree with the facts that I have frequently mentioned that Deubas, UML and other party leaders disolved the elected boby and could not able to hold the election within the time frame establidhed by the Nepali Constitution 1990 or1991. After that they asked to the KG for a long tenure of their govrnment. It was unacceptable for the average Nepalis therfore the average Nepalis are not behind these with the short -sighted leaders.

These leaders were silly when local elections could not held at that time, they wanted to go for mid-term general election. How do you look at these so-called, people- orientated leaders? In the Moral ground, these leaders should immediately side -lined themselves. Firt fall, these illed leaders have no vision for Nepalis and Nepal.

These parties were born at the era of the Rana and have the same mentality of the RANAs. We need a very differnt approach to launch a new democratic society in Nepal. We need to explore all the avenues, I think we should not look at only the parilmentary system is best democractic system in Nepal. I am not an expert in Political Science, but at least we can start thinking about new approach to solve presnt crisis of Nepal. I honestly believe, we are not going to see any positive changes from these two parties in Nepal( at least for this hour of time).

These leaders lost the goodwill and moral trust of the general Nepalis that includes me. When you lost the trust, it takes a long time to build one.But I always trust in a More democractic Nepal has to be come.

I hope someone somewhere there is a Nepali who came break the cold ICE sooner or later.

Comment by Pashupati — 5/9/2005 @ 1:53 am

Pashupati,

I agree. But still you can count these names in your hands: people like Girija, Deuba, Khum Bahadur, Gupat, Wagle, Joshi, Sujata,…..You might add a dozen or two more, right? I think that democracy was completely able to weed out these people. How??

I might repeat it: When Girija went to the mid-term polls looking for the “two-third” majority, his party was duely punished by the people. A number of his ministers lost their elections (showing “booth capturing” and “money power” don’t work always)!!! Don’t you think that people were learning to choose their rulers? Consider again thousands of “local” leaders in Nepal’s more than 4000 VDCs. Don’t you think that new leaders were emerging from within? Also consider vibrant activism about caste, ethnicity, gender…(hope you don’t consider these as detrimental to the economic “development”). Well, there were instances of footpath railings breakings, strikes and so on. I do not have statistics, but I suppose these things were decreasing slowly. Let me make it clear, I don’t take all this negatively, this is how people demand their things in-between periodic elections. Compare this with the peaceful Panchayat: you were not allowed to go to streets demanding your needs. Elections or not elections, rulers’ fancies were read as people’s demands. Was the Panchayat any better than loss incurred from broken railings or strikes in democracy?

Like you, I feel exytremely uneasy to accept the leadership of many people in the picture. Again, call it my bias, I believe they are lesser evils. Why? you will alwasy have choice to root out these leaders. What will you do if KG fails to control the Maoists (about which I am 200% sure he can’t)? Will he go for meditation in the Himalays? Will he take a nice helicopter and fled? My worst fear is that like many dictators, he will go for an even intense killing spree. Truely we will be fighting a war of all against all.

Like you, I only can hope that this will never happen; but I pin my hope on democracy however imperfect it might have been in the last 15 years.

Comment by Save Nepal (savenepal@gmail.com) — 5/9/2005 @ 3:57 am

Save Nepal

I agree there are some positive changes have been taking in the Nepali societies in last 14 years. You may argue those positive changes have been taking becasue of the change in the political system or just time has become itself to change with external environments. Some many Nepalis are in foreign countries to seek employment opportunities, educational opportunitie and so on. I think these activities have added to the some positiv changes in the last decade.

In terms of economy freedom, Nepal has been taken pro- market strategy to improve our economy. Many people have better access to the banking system than used to be. More colleges and universities are establishe with the help of Private sectors. These are good things. I would never say that nothing progress has been ,in last 14 years, in Nepal. Definatly, there had been significan improvement in Media where people openly express their views.

My personally believe in free market economy, and freedom of press with the people should be able to choose their leaders to govern them.

Having said these, they were serious, miscalculations and strategical mistakes were made by the two parties, in addition to accumulating wealth in an unlawful way.

Can you believe that NC and UML support for free duty PAJERO for their MPS and higher government officials? Most of the MPs’ constituents even do not have access to motorable roads. Plus, how they could afford to buy a Japanese SUV?

Do not you think these parties are responsible for their actions, i.e. disoling the representative body, and not to go for elections?
They gave our freedom to the KG? Therefore , I raised the issues theleaders were the one whe killed the seed of the young democrasy in Nepal. It is easy to blame the KG, but we need to learn to realize the mistakes too. It is a Nepali culuture to blame others if things go other ways.

I can see, the KG was hungry for the Power too, but the leaders miscalculated him. I just want to see prosper and free Nepalis.

Comment by pashupati — 5/9/2005 @ 1:34 pm

Pashupati:

“Can you believe that NC and UML support for free duty PAJERO for their MPS and higher government officials? Most of the MPs’ constituents even do not have access to motorable roads. Plus, how they could afford to buy a Japanese SUV?”

*******You are absolutley right; and they were duly criticized, weren’t they? At some points, Pajero used to be synonimous with our sansads.

“Do not you think these parties are responsible for their actions, i.e. disoling the representative body, and not to go for elections?
They gave our freedom to the KG? Therefore , I raised the issues theleaders were the one whe killed the seed of the young democrasy in Nepal. It is easy to blame the KG, but we need to learn to realize the mistakes too. It is a Nepali culuture to blame others if things go other ways.”

*******Yes, I think so. Without their facilitation, KG could not have succeeded grabbing power. That’s why I think that a public apology from the parties could be a good beggining. I am surprised they have not accepted any mistake officially so far. I also think that without any such statement and a clear and CONCRETE “roadmap” (yet another abused term in contemproray Nepal), people are unlikely to support them.
I do believe that the people ultimately support the parties. In the long run, I guess that the monarchy will be the ultimate looser (irrespective of the outcomes of KG’s war) as it will alinate a sizable portion of the populace for ever. Second, the urban people never have been his friends however much wrath they are expressing right now. Third, even if KG wins, he will have to face a highly radicalized rural masses (thanks to the Maoists); parties alone can fill this void. Either way, humulating parties is detrimental to the health of the country in the long run.

Comment by Save Nepal (savenepal@gmail.com) — 5/10/2005 @ 3:41 am

Pashupatiji,

Will you email (savenepal@gmail.com) me your research on Nepal’s poverty? Thanks.

Comment by Save Nepal (savenepal@gmail.com) — 5/10/2005 @ 8:54 pm

Yaha Hune Lai Tyaha Chaina, Tyaha Hune Lai….

Excerpt from the personal diary of a Nepali girl in the United States

By Blogbahini

Today on campus sun is generous and smiling; so students are letting their exhausted selves take a hippopotamus-dip in the sun and are replenishing their dehydrated bodies with lemonade. Finals week is a disaster; rummaging through scattered papers or getting frantic about your laptops shutting off on you is normal. Diving to the ground flat and sleeping for straight two hours, forgetting about everything else in the world is also normal.

After the hustle-bustle on campus all day long, I slump my fatigued self on the lazy couch. It is past midnight, but my clock just stopped ticking. I look around; there are dishes piled in the sink, frozen veggies sitting on the table, and clothes scattered all over, making it look like a market. They nudge me, so I start functioning like a machine. Roommate isn’t home yet. She should be coming, dragging her own tiny little self to reach the door knob. No, she doesn’t drag herself. I don’t either. We’ve been trained to walk tall, so we walk the tall walk; amidst the darkness that looms large around us, while the buildings quietly cover themselves with blankets of snow and lull asleep.

“Aren’t you gonna eat?” I ask my African pal with curiosity as I ready spices for Aloodum.

“Well, No. I will drink though” she pours a glass of cold milk and stares at Jerry Springer stupefying people on T.V. “Is that your spices again?” she throws a glance at me.

“Well, I thought you loved my food! Open the window”. Onions in oil sizzle and my stomach’s started to giggle.

“Oh well, that pork you cooked…that was a killer!” she laughs; I narrow my eyebrows and stare at her. She then finishes the glass of milk, looks into the pan once and enters the bedroom.

I step out the door and stare at the sky; it is just amazing- stars twinkle while the fresh snow on the ground drizzles with delight, like diamonds. White, its white everywhere, like tiny pieces of diamonds were scattered all over the ground. During these times of nostalgia I get those recurring dreams. A wedding. A wedding night in Birgunj floods my memory with long forgotten chapters; chapters that have dilapidated in acidic rains within my mind, with stacks of memories being dampened.

How, as 17 year olds, we pulled stupid jokes on guys from the groom’s side; how we ostensibly demanded to be served food at the table, and they inclined. How we had ‘booked’ a beil-gada and ventured into the void…into the remote villages that stretched long and wide, with little white mud-houses standing close to each other like friends. The smell; fresh smell of cultivated soil as it rained. It might as well be cow-dung smell, but it fills the void in me and I start a tomorrow with a new vigor.

Oh the travelogues I chanted about the numerous bus rides to villages. I’d look out the window and see figures dance in the darkness. While the bus slid through winding roads of Nagdhunga, I’d hear chimes singing to me in solitude. Trishuli River scared me; but I’d look down and hear it gargling in delight. Old Hindi songs would drag themselves out of the boom box and whine in little interruptions as they relayed another story of undying love.

As I reach out to capture those memories and cherish it for a while, the clock starts ticking; I come jostling down to reality. I wonder if life will ever be like that again? Carefree, cheerful and immersed in childish hallucinations! In fact that child who used to gather a crowd at home and dance her will out. I could give anything to live that moment again where I cuddled up against my aunts in a small Rickshaw and carefully listened to the Clock Tower shout another Ding!

If there ever were a need to express discontent over a hooliganous life that I was leading here, alone, I would seek refuge in consolations from the loved ones back home. Someone used to tell me “Yaha hune lai tyaha chaina, tyaha hune lai yaha chaina; swarga ma sukha chaina kina bhane tyaha dajna ko laagi dukha chaina”. It was true, and soothing in its own way. “It can’t get any worse” I’d tell myself, and head for a challenging day ahead.

8 Comments »

hi BlogDidi,

I called you didi, coz’ you sound like so to me.

I did read ur blog carefully and found myself somewhere in between. The quote you’ve quoted deserves to be qouted, and I know that’s why you have qouted.

Got inspired to quote more qoutes like that!
Hope to see more qoutes of yours.

Ur BlogBrother,
Udayan

Comment by Udayan — 5/5/2005 @ 5:02 pm

Hey Blogbahini!

I understand you. Did you ask your friends about it: I guess every student in the US goes nostagic at the end of the semester (Indeed, signs of a “good” student)? Who loves exams, papers, research, presentations and what not??? Come summer, New York looks great not because the snow has melted away, but because there are not exams!

“Man” is (more than selfish) a lazy animal!!

Comment by Save Nepal (savenepal@gmail.com) — 5/5/2005 @ 5:28 pm

lord krishna says in geeta : “the joys that spring from external associations bring pain ;they have their beginnings n their endings .the wise man doesn’t rejoice them.”

he further says in another chapter ” all creatures are the product of food , food is the product of rain , rain comes by sacrifice , and sacrifice is the noblest form of action.”

so pujaniya mata in new york , let me tell u that this selling of feelings on UWB is quite absurd . u r in a material world n u r in that never ending race of acquiring material pelf.so the race taht u n this planet is in will only lead u to void … an eternal void .so for that sake , plz do not sell ur feelings …. this is not a world for anubhuti …here money is the doer n everthing else is action ….so , plz at least try to avoid being a hypocrite.adoring snow n telling ur agonies is an easy job.even some beggars under the branches of blue mimosa at ghantaghar can , anyday , do that . hope u will edit urself in this passion of selling ur feelings
ps: this is to wagleji. hey is it that i can also do a weblog as u people do? wat is the process. plz let me know .plz plz .

Comment by sisyphus sharma — 5/5/2005 @ 7:02 pm

के गर्नु माया लाग्छ,त्यो ठाउ को तर समयले पदचाप हरुलाई जिबनको अर्को पाटो तिर मोडे पछि कस्को के लाग्दो रहेछ र?

Blogbahini,
Thanx for rejuvinating my memory.

Comment by Himal — 5/6/2005 @ 9:43 am

Sisyphus, first off- I’m not ’selling’, they don’t pay me to write here :S Second, as they say it, in democracy, You can choose not to read it, or as you did, choose to read and rant against it.

“Telling your agonies is an easy job”

Really? I have such a hard time telling people what I go through I had to plead in a public forum for consolation! But thanx for your Geeta teachings, next time I’ll try to disassociate myself from external pleasures, and may be will preach ‘quantum physics’ as is the trend in this website these days!

Comment by Blogbahini — 5/7/2005 @ 10:12 am

Is it the failure of American dream which promises people all sorts of happiness and a hope of new beginning? Yes, you are right, despite the knowledge that People in the US are not happpier (in mind) than people in Africa, people here still love to spend their time imagining smogly about BILLS and BlONDES.

Comment by Vishu — 5/7/2005 @ 10:55 am

sorry for spelling & preposition mistakes

Comment by Vishu — 5/7/2005 @ 10:57 am

Vishu, I’d still be wise and unhappy than be ignorant and happy!

Comment by Blogbahini — 5/8/2005 @ 2:46 am