Sunday, October 28, 2007
Betrayal , as a form of deception or dismissal of prior political commitment, is not uncommon in politics anywhere. However, the fact that Prime Minister G. P. Koirala, with 65 years of active politics, is capable to do it is something that comes not just as a surprise to the activists and voters of Nepali Congress, but also as a shame.
As a reform-oriented centrist party, the Nepali Congress has been on the frontline of politics and democratization since it was established in 1947. From the beginning it enjoys the support of the modest, democratic and non-communist voters of this country. They nurtured this party through decades for its commitment to soft politics and institutions based on Westminster model, the principle of national reconciliation as the strategy of Nepal’s independence and survival, and representative democracy.
Shift in Policies : Now there is a new edition of G. P. Koirala, which has challenged these ideals without allowing discussions – and without any working strategy and national direction. He has taken for granted that what he decides is the decision of the nation.
This is not all. Koirala has also cajoled this country - already deeply wounded for its faith in representative institutions – by upholding that those parties who think differently should not have access to the Parliament, and should have practically no opportunity to contest the constituent assembly elections. He has made sure that people who differ with him within the Congress have no voice in the public. In all these betrayals, and maneuverings to ‘republicanise’ Nepal by hooks or crooks, who knows it more than Prime Minister Koirala himself how outrageously treacherous he has proved to this otherwise proud democracy and a country of profoundly nationalist people. Since he approved the India-initiated 12-point understanding in New Delhi last year, Prime Minister Koirala has ignored the agenda of the Nepali Congress. He has also fully stopped the line of communication with the rank-and-file of the Congress.
Two important Decisions
Recently, Prime Minister Koirala took two important decisions: firstly, he reunited the Nepali Congress Party that had been living with the agonies of vertical split since the last five years, supposedly making it as strong as it was during the last general elections (if not more); and secondly, he changed his party having faith in constitutional monarchy and Westminster model of democracy into a republican party with no sustainable agenda for transformation – finally conceding to the Indian demand that monarchy has already served its purpose, and it must go.
The remarks of Koirala until a few months before about national reconciliation, or the policy of Nepali Congress that pleaded tradition with modernity as the basis to defend democracy and protect national independence, has at once become out of context to him. As a consequence, the party which has been re-united at the leadership level has lost its bases of power at the voters’ level. They still believe in constitutional monarchy, a democratic system based on devolution of power to the local people, and a unitary and strong Nepal. Needless to say, at a time when the Party needs its voters overwhelmingly in the impending constituent assembly elections-- especially against extremists and communal elements-- Prime Minister Koirala has thrown them into the mire of confusion, lies and extremist propaganda. Strangely enough, he thinks the Congress will come back to power – without its voters, because the goodwill that the Congress has lost will be compensated by the Madheshi Janadhikar Forum – a new outfit supposedly going to be his new partner in the forthcoming elections. Of course, Koirala is building on wrong premises.
Subtleties of Monarchy
Twenty-eight years before, in 1979, when t he Shah of Iran, Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, had fled his country following months of violent protests against his regime, many democrats and liberals thought that the roadblock to democracy has finally been set aside. In fact, just as G. P. Koirala betrayed King Gyanendra and most of the commoners of Nepal, Dr Shapur Bahktiar, the man who Shah Pahlavi had appointed as Prime Minister just one month before he fled, too had disingenuously forced him to leave the country.
The person, who the increasing number of violent clashes between security forces and anti-Shah demonstrators established in power, was Ayatollah Ruholla Khomeini. With the support of the liberals and commies, very much like the support of the imperfect ‘loktantrabadis’ of Nepal to the Maoists, Khomeini finally came to assert control over the course leading to a revolutionary Islamic Council to replace what he called the "illegal government" of Iran. Whatever little democracy the Iranians had during the period of Shah has become a dream for the people since then. After all, democracy is a process not a product, and no Khomeini can ensure it – whether he creates a constitution through his religious decree, or a constituent assembly under the shadow of bloodhounds and separatists.
Communist Invasion: The pressures on Prime Minister Koirala are understandable. He is just like “a parrot in a cage.” But emerging from the difficulties that a country has been plunged into is possible only when the best interest of the nation stands out as the core issue of the national agenda.
When the bases of power are not the voters, whether G. P. Koirala or Babarak Karmal - the Russia nominated President for communist Afghanistan, the effect on the nation is bound to be catastrophic. A leading Afghan Marxist, Karmal lost not only his country but also the prospect of democracy for a long time when he became Russian puppet ruler after the Russian invasion in 1979. The Karmal government, even with the aid of nearly 110,000 Soviet troops, air power and large scale ground offensives was not able to deal with resistance forces. His famed charisma had failed him, for few Afghans wanted to work with the puppet of a foreign power. In fact, Afghans quickly dubbed Karmal as "Shah Shuja the Second," a reference to an Afghan puppet of the British in the 19th century.
Again, who knows it more than Koirala, how the ‘Lhendups’ of the Kingdom of Sikkim brought ‘gallons’ of democracy in the country and washed away all traces of its nationhood from the history. Unfortunately, the poor Chogyal didn’t even have a standing army to defend its people when the country was being overrun by the renegades and foreign invaders advising him.
Chassis of National Reconciliation
It is against the background of annexation of Sikkim that Late B. P. Koirala had appealed to the nation in 1976 that “in the history of each country, an hour arrives when its people stake their lives to defend the integrity and independence of their motherland. We do feel that such an hour has come in Nepal. .. Our personal safety is of little consequence in the face of the danger threatening the very existence of our country.” Nepali Congress needs to be reminded again: “The people of Nepal have a twofold responsibility - achievement of democracy and defense of national integrity. If, however, we consider one of the two responsibilities as our only task, we would be one sided and commit a grave blunder.” And if we lay stress on the achievement of democracy alone, we may not effectively participate in resolving the national crisis.” For these obvious reasons, late B. P. Koirala had maintained that his neck is joined with the neck of the King; and if one of them is killed, the other will not survive for this very reason. Time might have changed, but not the context. Surprisingly, a few Congressmen have come up, here and there, in recent days, who have been arguing that B. P. has become out of context; and the policy of national reconciliation has already lost its roots. Unfortunately, at that level of simplicity, it just does not work.
Foundations of a centrist party
To remain stronger, every political party has to respond to its constituencies, and try to build on their aspiration. Even a fool knows that republicanism is a Maoist slogan. They mean it; and they have certain use for it. Among the democrats, federalism is the slogan of some disgruntled people, who want more participation in the political system, but have little ideas of how the system might work. It requires serious work and sustainable strategies, which none of them have ever been able to bring before the public. Maoists again have their own strategic threads on it, which must be checked for absurdities. The voters of the Nepali Congress can buy religious freedom (at the most protection of all religions, or equal distance with all of them); but it will not be able to digest ten types of community laws. They might throw their weight on devolution of power to the locals; but they will not accept a situation where ethnic ego runs over the representative institutions, and the indivisibility of the nation. Getting from here to there is a matter of routine planning and building institutions, not heroics, and certainly not the extra-ordinary merry-go-around that Prime Minister Koirala is made to think of in the changes he is implementing.
There should not be any shyness in upholding that the Constitution of 1990 remains the best reflection of the democratic model of the Nepali Congress – historically as well as a modern device. It faced external assaults and internal manipulation because of its strengths and inherent capacity to check abuse of power and protect national interests. It did not get enough opportunity to grow on. The agenda of improvement in it, especially the desires of the ethnic communities for greater identity and participation, and similar other reforms could be brought in for serious discussion and decision making. Yet, structures and procedures alone, without structures that create political stability, guiding principles and values, can not give self-momentum or resilience to a party in the face of assault. It is here that the Nepali Congress has to dispense with populism and stand taller than the rest of the parties which do not have issues to bind all the people together. Like the mortar between the bricks of a building, it is the shared values of an institution which bind the structures together, which make them strong and resilient, and which give them a collective identity greater than the sum of their parts. This alone allows them to develop an autonomous vision and sense of purpose. As a leading party of the country, it is the responsibility of the Nepali Congress not to compromise on the chassis that holds all the people together.
Another crucial issue that the Congress should take to the people is the most urgent task of devising national security strategy. Such a strategy should outline the nature of the threat that confronts this country today explaining priorities, and describing the strategy it needs to adopt to counter these threats. But as all know, this country lives in an increasingly interconnected, complex and often dangerous design. Congress needs to get its starting point right, and it should entail a correct understanding of the problems and threats that Nepal has to be up against. This country is facing all these troubles, political or terroristic, because of its geographical location.The threat is definitely strategic. No one can guarantee that another Maoist War will not break out here again. The approach must be to make it extremely difficult for unconstitutional and proxy forces to carry out their evil deeds while at the same time, be well prepared and ready to deal with the repercussions if such a force does emerge. Of course, safeguarding the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of the state is the central pillar of a security policy. But t here can be no greater role, no more important obligation for a government, than the protection and safety of its citizens. What purpose a constituent assembly will serve if the people who have the right to vote do not have the protection from fear. To make sure that the political system of this country works, the Nepali Congress will have to prepare ourselves both operationally and psychologically to deal with threats that may hit the country – including those it cannot even anticipate now.
Euphorias come to an end
But the fear for the Nepalese people is that it is coming to an end with irreparable loss to the nation. A functioning democracy has gone for long. Indeed, what has been marvelously achieved by ‘loktantra’ is the pulling down of a Constitution which for the first time in the history declared that sovereignty of Nepal vests in the Nepalese people; introduced a functioning Westminster model of parliamentary democracy in the country; legalized the operations of the political parties, guaranteed adult franchise and basic human rights to all; ensured the power of the independent judiciary to judge over the issues of constitutionality; and preserved the national interests by means of several constitutional institutions and procedures.
Unfortunately, a well functioning system of the check and balance has been replaced with the concept of the “sovereignty of eight parties” in the framework of the Interim Constitution, which looks like a manifesto of a totalitarian regime. It does not have any concept of participation and inclusiveness. Again the rule by law that those who do not buy its formulations, or claim their right to dissent with the constitutional carnage of the nation, are not to be allowed within the interim mechanisms make farce of what has been defined as the transition regime.
Indeed Prime Minister Koirala, who is already in a very vulnerable age, has left nothing for his posterity. The revolution has really been successful under his leadership. It has turned the country into debris – physical, moral, intellectual, and historical – without giving a ray of hope for the future. Everything old – from the physical infrastructure of this poor country to the most ancient of its national institutions have been pulled down. The demographic change that Koirala and his Company have brought in Nepal by distributing citizenship to all willing Indians still has to show its teeth. While all institutions are in limbo, and civil, judicial and military bureaucracies are out of touch with the Prime Minister, there are decisions after decisions under the pressures of sometime Maoists, and sometime Goits and Jwala Singhs. After these eighteen months, Koirala no longer needs the blessings of either the common people, the seven parties of heroic ambitions, or of the erratic King, who appointed him to right the wrong measures that he had applied to diffuse the crisis.
Democracy needs to be worked out with sustainable political strategies. The problem of institutionalization of democracy and empowerment of the people goes far beyond the issue of the elections to the constituent assembly and drawing up of a new constitution acceptable to all. If some opinion makers think everything will be fine after the ongoing movement achieve these milestones, or the King is dethroned, or the Maoists are mainstreamed and power is handed over to the legitimate representatives of the people, they are not objective, and if the history of the world is any evidence, revolutions have frequently been successful to destroy the status quo, but not always to create and sustain a viable alternative regime. The later issue demands proper planning and clearly thought out strategies. An extremist culture based on violent parameters is, therefore, never helpful.
It is very unlikely for the Nepali Congress to establish itself in terms of its newly acquired rhetorics. It could still be saved if it goes to the people with the policies that they want to hear from them. These policies are no doubt the historical parameters of the Nepali Congress. For that to happen, Prime Minister Koirala has to reestablish the line of communication with the rank and file of his party, and think in terms of what his voters want from him.
Debunking the Democratic Dogma
Messiahs Messages and the Mess in Nepal
No Impunity for Civil Society Leaders: Nepalis are watching....
The Pain of Losing a Nation
Friday, October 12, 2007
Given the rapidly deteriorating political situation in Nepal, the NepaliPerspectives Group would like to take a moment of your time to conduct an interview via e-mail. With your subject matter expertise and intimate knowledge of the Nepali Maoists, your opinion would be very valuable for the NepaliPerspectives audience.
We do realize you are a busy individual and appreciate your time.
Thank you in advance.
Mao established the lines of operation necessary for his people’s war strategy to achieve the goal of a people’s republic. He said any Maoist movement must proceed using: politics (the mass line); allies (“useful idiots” in Lenin’s phraseology – united fronts from above and below; with organizations and individuals, respectively); violence (of various forms, from terror to guerrilla war, from main-force war to war of position); non-violence (“political warfare,” techniques to make violence more effective, such as destroying enemy will); and international action.
Initially, in the first five years (1996-2001) of their self-declared people’s war, the Maoists consciously aped Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path). This is evident in their documents and in their discussions. Thus they emphasized violence, with terror and guerrilla war eliminating the human and institutional rallying points of the system – stripping away the human glue that held the system together. Still pursuing violence, they went to main-force warfare after 2001, endeavouring to field battalions, brigades, and divisions, mimicking the forces of the state. By default, they were able to hold human terrain (war of position), as the state, by kowtowing to foreign voices, refused to mobilize local forces and thus ceded control of the countryside. There, a counter-state was built with new economic, social, and political forms (all embryonic and necessarily proto-fascist, to include school prayers to the martyrs of the revolution). This political activity unfolded, even as fellow travellers were mobilized into allegedly independent groups of ethnic and “student” bodies (the “united front” line of operation). Agit-prop was central to fortifying new cultural norms – hence revolutionary will – through song, dance, and vocabulary (the “political warfare” line of operation). Finally, the international line of operation saw global fellow travellers brought into the picture, right down to the leftist groupies who are in the forefront of the present struggle against “globalism.” India, of course, dusted off the failed approaches of its own Sri Lankan adventure and its Northeast campaigns and allowed the legal (but troglodyte) left to implement its revolutionary fantasies at Nepali expense.
Failure of the Nepali state to use democracy, imperfect and corrupt though it has was (yet functioning), for mass mobilization to mobilize against the Maoist assault, made royal martial law inevitable. This, in turn, provided the opening for a decisive Maoist shift to the united front line of operation. Simultaneously, the non-violent line of operation dictated creating the charade of the regroupment camps to negate state armed capacity even as the YCL street goons ensured that the Maoists’ own violence continued to ensure progress towards the Maoist goal.
It is here that we see the finesse of the Maoist approach. In Peru, in a comparable situation, Shining Path not only continued with but intensified its violence. Its ideological blinders got the better of it, and its astonishing brutality mobilized its own demise. In one of the limited cases of self-mobilization, the Peruvian populace, led by the very Quechua-speaking Indian communities that had comprised the initial Shining Path base of support rose up in the late 1980s and demanded arms. These the state provided in the 1990s, and the revolutionary endeavor was swamped in a sea of humanity. The numbers were truly staggering, with the central theatre of combat, Ayacucho, seeing government forces multiplied by a factor (literally) of 100, as some 250,000 peasants joined local self-defense groups.
BACK TO THE FUTURE: THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF NEPAL (MAOIST) - Part 4 of 5
BACK TO THE FUTURE: THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF NEPAL (MAOIST) - Part 3 of 5http://nepaliperspectives.blogspot.com/2007/06/back-to-future-communist-party-of-nepal_953.html
BACK TO THE FUTURE: THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF NEPAL (MAOIST) - Part 1 of 5http://nepaliperspectives.blogspot.com/2007/06/back-to-future-communist-party-of-nepal.html
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
With the suspension of the scheduled Constituent Assembly (CA) elections, political blame game is at its best. While the country is facing the worst form of chaos since its existence as a sovereign nation, the hunt for "scapegoat" is on. As usual, no politician or the political party wants to share the blame for dashing away people's desire to have CA elections.
The nation is so bitterly divided that the cadres of every political party see other parties as the culprit behind the current political fiasco forgetting its own party's role in the current mess. The NC rank and files shamelessly blame the Maoists for the suspension of the CA elections even though the current government is headed by non other than its own party president. As usual, the UML once again nodded to the Maoist demands but wanted to play safe by writing a "Note of Dissent." What an excellent way to fool Nepali citizens. Kudos to Madhav Kumar Nepal and other flip-floppers out there in the UML.
Everyone seems to blaming the Maoists for the current fiasco. Why are we surprised at the Maoists' ways and means now? Those that are now blaming the Maoists for derailing the CA elections should first educate themselves on ways that radical communists pursue to capture power. They must educate themselves on how radical communists ruled other nations in the past and what they are doing now to consolidate power in the different parts of the globe.
First, read what Mao did in China, Castro did in Cuba and what Kim Jong-il and Hugo Chavez are doing in North Korea and Venezuela before expecting the Maoists in Nepal to act responsibly and democratically. All those wishful thinkers out there will then realize that in radical communists' red book, seeking people's mandate through free and fair democratic elections is a big No No. Threat and discouragement are the two main weapons that radical communists use to diminish the hold of their political rivals in the society and capture power.
Blaming the Maoists for insincerity is nothing but foolishness. When they have never been sincere and abided by the agreement they signed, why are we upset when they pulled out of the government and forced suspension of the CA elections? It is us, who chose to overlook Maoists' insincerity and kept silent when they flouted the agreements.
So, blaming the Maoists for not being sincere is ridiculous. They were never sincere towards securing peace and consolidation of democracy to begin with. All the Maoists wanted was to enjoy the privileges of being in the parliament and the cabinet. They never ever wanted to share the blame for failures.
This has been the Maoist strategy from the very beginning. They wanted to be in the cabinet in order to use all of the resources of the nation so that they could embolden their political footings, buy political legitimacy and seek support of the international community, and familiarize their guerillas with urban settings to wage urban centered revolution. The Maoists had made clear that their ultimate goal is to establish a proletarian communist state.
Under the current circumstances, the Maoists know it very well that they can neither win elections, nor capture the power by force. So, the only way for them to remain dominant in national politics, is through subversion of the democratic process by threatening and discouraging the Seven Party Alliance. They know it very well that the SPA does not have the required guts to challenge the Maoists' fiefdom and will go any length to appease them.
So, it is not the Maoists that are to be blamed but the spine-less politicians of the major political parties that do not have guts to energize the democratic base and challenge the Maoists' fiefdom and anti-democratic behavior. It is not the Maoists that have weakened democracy (they were never for it to begin with), but the SPA that joined hands with the radical Maoists that unlike them, believe power comes from the barrel of a gun not ballots.
In a mad rush for power, what the so-called politicians of the SPA foolishly ignored is that "radical communism," which the Maoists vouch for, and the freedom and democracy that Nepali citizens long for, are two significantly different and titanic ideas, two ways of life, and two totally irreconcilable beliefs.
The April revolution of 2006 had provided an excellent platform to secure peace and stability and consolidate democracy. It had paved the way for a new generation of pragmatists, highly invigorated, responsible, talented and energetic politicians to assume leadership, which unfortunately did not happen. Democracy has stalled in Nepal because the inept, diffident and inert politicians lack vision and a clear sense of direction. Even when the poor rise up against the despotic Monarch; granting opportunistic politicians a chance to make a difference, they squander it.
Trapped by the war lords such as Jay Krishna Goit and Narendra Paswan and betrayed the politicians of the SPA and the radical Maoists, Nepalis, here we are again at another critical juncture. We have had almost two years of opportunity to secure peace and consolidate democracy but the results are laughable: renewed autocracy, political violence, lawlessness and warlordism, and the usual blame games. Sadly, those with access and power have to a large extent enriched themselves and bled the nation out of its last vestiges of survival.
Seeing politicians undermine their constituents, it becomes evident that, politics means a money-making game in an impoverished Nepal. Serving the nation with politics proves to be a sham and pretension. All acts of political disloyalty and political betrayal have just one motivation: Honest illusions of genuine betrayal.
The tragedy is that most national political pugilists and players tend to pose themselves as the chosen savior of democracy and people's freedom. Whatever they do, no matter how myopically selfish, they see it as a vision of messianic responsibility. What they sell as democratic struggle can more accurately be described as perpetuation of feudal rule within an encompassing patron-client system.
In the present degenerative political culture, it will be extremely difficult, if not impossible, for someone with vision and leadership potential to emerge and navigate the nation towards peace, stability, and prosperity.
However, the only way to get out of this mess is through another revolution. A new revolution is needed that will wipe out radical elements that are shrewdly trying to trap freedom loving Nepali citizens into the "yoke of communism" along with those pseudo-democrats out there that act more like Maoist operatives than people's representatives.
Prachanda and his henchmen will come to their sense only when people will rise and pull the carpet beneath their feet like they did to King Gyanendra. When King Gyanendra with hundred thousand strong trained professional forces could be brought to his senses, bringing Prachanda to his senses is not an unachievable act. It is certainly doable.
As a matter of fact, that is the only viable option left to bring these radicals to their senses. Even if some of us were to die, it is better to be liberated by death than trapped by radicals. If trapped, we would be forced to witness painful death of life, liberty and prosperity like helpless citizens of Cuba, North Korean and Venezuela are doing now.
No Impunity for Civil Society Leaders: Nepalis are watching....
Nepali Maoists Should bear Moral Responsibility for the Terror Attacks in Kathmandu
Peace or Appease Process?
New CA date: Reality or another farce?
Monday, October 08, 2007
(Courtesy: Siddharth Thapa)
Girija in pursuit of becoming contemporary Nepal's political hero is now on the path of being labeled as the country's most unsuccessful prime minister. Although he had been largely discredited, the king's takeover undoubtedly provided him with a hero's halo to champion the cause of democracy.
Unfortunately, as in the past GP Koirala has failed to deliver and his only motive to root the king out of power now becomes obvious – his undying passion for power. It is indeed tragic to note that Koirala's ego matches the king's and both have enormously contributed to the political crisis prevailing in the country today. Neither of them wanted the other to succeed. Both want to seal their immortality in Nepali history by being seen the solution to Nepal's key problems, through politics of one up-manship.
A prominent Congress leader on the condition of anonymity revealed that GP Koirala had met the Maoists at the Jain Temple in Naxal, just before the state of emergency was announced; while his colleague Sher Bahadur Deuba was the prime minister in 2001. At the time, Koirala was point blank in conveying to the Maoists that, "ultimately you people would have to talk me;" during his secret parley with the Maoists. That only shows what mattered to him the most in his power-driven politics. Unseating prime ministers and his attempt on the monarchy at any cost only reconfirm he has not changed.
The Monarchy today is the unifying element or best serves as the punching bag for our politicians and civil society members. Therefore, if abruptly removed, there would be no thread to keep them united.
The real issues that plague Nepal today is poverty, social exclusion, corruption and the consistent absence of a responsive government. Monarchy or a republic, in that sense is a non-issue. But Gyanendra helped propel this dogmatic propaganda of the Maoists by seizing absolute power in an attempt to sideline the democratic forces in the country.
The Maoists and the political parties have maintained that the monarchy is solely responsible for the deplorable condition of the people. However, these accusations are ill founded and any sociologists or a historian would conclude that it is the priestly clan who were responsible for enforcing caste laws and orthodox protocols that segregate a larger portion of the society, a fact ignored by all political parties so far.
Therefore, what Nepal really needs is a social, cultural and an economic revolution. Or better a new political revolution with a socio-economic and cultural reform package. The declaration of a republic from a nominated parliament will hold no relevance to that need.
Over the last year, adherence to the constitution has been ignored, therefore, should the Maoists run into confrontation at any time with the six parties, it is almost certain that monarchy will be brought back to life by six parties as buffer against the Maoists.
The key really is the balance of power. The political parties want to retain power at any cost and for that reason, they can swing like a pendulum on either side of the political spectrum to forge alliances to stay in power.
Gyanendra as a commoner went to visit the Kumari, and that caused a sensation in the political circle. Girija's objection to that now begs the question, should the entire Nepali population seek permission from the prime minister to visit the Kumari? And does the move to downsize the number of armed forces in the palace help the peace process or did it better the prospect of elections happening? The real irony is that the parties who boast of minimizing the king to a political non-entity continue to fear him. This fear and vulnerability goes to demonstrates how badly the parties have failed to materialize their promised dreams into reality.
In every sense it is embarrassing for us Nepalis to observe this grand spectacle where our leaders have shed their dignity and pride by making absurd political statements and comical observations to delude the people. Girija's decision to go to republic is not based on reasoning or political principles but merely on tactical moves to cling to power. Should the political equation change, so will his decision. Therefore, how long are we to suffer from politics of hatred, prejudice and vengeance? The continued tussle between the monarch and the democrats will only result in each eliminating the other out of the political equation.
Nepali Maoists Prepare for their Final Assault
Girija's Grand Design
Apples, Oranges and the Maoist Victory in Nepal
Defining the Mainstream
(Courtesy: Satyajeet Nepali)
The news of suspension of the CA polls has to be taken with deep gravity. While EPA-supporters must be busy scraping together another typical apologist explanations and regular warnings of regressive conspiracies, the EPA-bashers are reveling at having been proven correct about the SPA-M alliance’s inability to deliver.
Amidst all this, one is eerily reminded of Russia’s October Revolution and our very own Lenin, Prachanda, threatening a similar one in Nepal last year. There was no October Revolution last year, only threats. But could those threats be played out this year? The CPN-M has reportedly called for a ‘jana-dabab karyakram’ on the day of the special session of the parliament. What do we make of this?
At this critical juncture, Nepalis need to remind themselves that, in 1917, Russia too had a Provisional Government set with the mandate of forming a constituent assembly to draft a new constitution for Russia. However, before this could be done, Lenin and his Bolshevik Party organized disgruntled soldiers, workers, and peasants to stage a coup and take over the government. Of course, this could only be successful because the Provisional Government had already lost much of its credibility.
Could the suspension of polls, and reports of a Maoist initiative to seek a vote-of-no-confidence against PM Girija be the casting to further erode the government’s credibility and unleash further disturbances later in the month? Given the Maoists’ past activities and the recent fiasco they created at Kantipur using their trade union, Nepalis need to be wary of such sinister plans.
Fortunately, incredible as it may seem, our state is still not as weak as Russia’s in 1917. The Nepali monarch, though detested and weakened, is not in bad enough a position to be forced to abdicate like Tsar Nicolas II of Russia. The Nepali Army, despite numerous attempts to humiliate it, remains a disciplined and intact force. These two pillars should make the Maoists balk at the prospect of enacting a Russian-style October Revolution in Nepal. Nevertheless, the Nepali Army needs to be ready for any eventuality now.
The SPA, if it wishes to retain even a modicum of respect and credibility from the people, it has to resist attempts by the Maoists to create any kind of power-vacuum, including a pre-election abolition of the monarchy. The Maoists cannot be given any opportunity to further undermine the state.
Friday, October 05, 2007
The battle cry following King Gyanendra’s ill-conceived takeover was that a country’s sovereignty’s rests with the people. And, with the help of violent Maoist and democratic party-led agitations and International pressure, King Gyanendra was finally forced to concede power to Parliament.
With the Constituent Assembly Elections in doubt, the euphoria of that time has passed into the shadows.
People are already forgetting the excesses and stupidity of King Gyanendra and Paras and whispers of retaliation are growing louder. People now are fully aware the Parties and Maoists no longer behave as representatives of a democracy but are a craven, self-centered lot, whose purpose was never to help Nepalis but to enrich themselves further and entrench themselves in power.
The fundamental test of whether people possess sovereignty is whether they can exercise their vote in free and fair elections. Despite the Maoists and the Political parties having raised the people’s expectations to giddy heights – the masses have had no input in the peace process since the uprising and the notion of the Constituent Assembly elections is turning into a farce with potentially tragic consequences.
The parties, who last contested elections in 1999, while hanging by a thread of legitimacy through their travails under King Gyanendra’s shenanigans have are now illegitimate pretenders.
The Maoists, always illegitimate, who tell us they already know what the people want and see no point in elections simply wish to declare a republic with no input from the people and then wedge themselves cancerously into government and institutions in the hopes they will eventually rule Nepal themselves.
That the Bahuns dominate the leadership positions in virtually all power centers could begin to lead to permanent rifts in Nepal society and the attendant bloodshed could destroy any shared vision of Nepal.
The “sovereign people” of Nepal have no input into any important decisions ranging on matters fundamental as their own constitution, their security, and economic policy. The decisions coming from Baluatar or Naya Bazaar have an odious opaqueness that trumps the various decrees that came under King Gyanendra.
To blame the usual suspects: Civil Society, woeful intellectuals, worthless UN and NGO workers, and the political parties is getting tiresome. The failed democracies around the world tell us democracy is a tough master and the failures of the Nepali champions of democracy (who presumably have experience since the 1950s) tells us something about their inadequacies while also giving us an uneasy indication that we’re not quite ready for self-governance.
Its becoming evident we are lacking in the skills, culture, economic strength and a sense of a unified history to enable us to achieve the democratic vision we pursued.
The Greeks were wise and tough mountain men, who went regularly to war to defend their freedom and were the first to exercise key concepts of democracy. They figured out a way to get rid of Kings and Monarchs we are told and in its place establish democracy – or more accurately, are accorded that special honor of innovating democracy and, being wise and reflective, also strived to understand human nature, conflict, and various forms of governments.
We are also mountain men but perhaps for us our destiny is to be one of the sad characters in Greek mythology – Sisyphus – the tragically cursed King who has to roll a boulder up a hill for eternity.
We the People
Ordinary Nepali Realities vs. Extraordinary Nepali Dreams
Nepal's Constituent Assembly Elections - It's not Just a Matter of Security
Thursday, October 04, 2007
April 21st 2006, Los Angeles Times
“The U.S. must side with foes of the king, even though they include Maoist rebels.
Kanak Dixit and I began drafting this article three weeks ago to try to draw attention to the disaster unfolding in Nepal, where a corrupt, absolute monarch has spent four years pushing the hands on the democracy clock back toward midnight.
Unfortunately, Kanak, one of the finest journalists in Nepal, wasn't able to approve the final draft. On April 8, this gentle man with a sly sense of humor was abruptly tossed in jail. About 200 other Nepalese journalists also have been rounded up in the last two weeks, either for attending demonstrations demanding democracy and freedom of the press or for covering such demonstrations, which have erupted in the capital, Katmandu, as the king's rule has become ever more repressive.”
Professor BB loves humor but un-intentional humor gets him rolling with these two budding stand-ups.
John and Kanak – the Bing and Bob from the classic “Road to Singapore” style going dramatic on us. Professor BB ain’t that smart but 18-months later, it looks like they’ve put us on the road to Singaaanpooor with a one way ticket instead.
Kanak has a “sly” sense of humor? You’re killing me you two – murdering me without due process of law and order with your sly sense of humor.
Let me get this straight. You hate the King. You kind of like the Maoists because you think you can control them with the safe landing thing. But the Maoists want to kill everyone. And everyone’s OK with this?
I’m dyin’ over here Pumba.
If John Norris thinks Kanak has a sense of humor, then he needs to be inspected by Ian Martin himself – something Ian “The Quiet” will take pleasure in doing Professor BB understands.
“Finest journalist”….now I’m on the floor. Heeeelllppp me, please.
You thought that was funny. See more from the dynamic duo.
It’s not surprising that Americans have only the gauziest notion what’s going on in Nepal. The news stories sound as if they could have been written from any of several dozen troubled Third World countries where angry insurgents threaten an oppressive regime.
“Gauziest?” Hell, the LA Times didn’t know WHAT the hell they were publishing. Who uses the term “gauziest”? Excuse me for my ignorance, Professor BB forgot, the “sieve-like-porous-anything-goes-through” Americans need to be educated by these two astute and absorbent analysts.
Pleeasseeee stop with the sly sense of humor – its too devastating. Professor BB can only handle straight-forward “un-gauzy” humor.
Is fuel totally unavailable in Nepal now?
John and Kanak can yell at Bush now and tell them what THEY have done to reduce Nepal’s carbon footprint. Hey, you stupid cowboy, here’s how you reduce greenhouse gases.
Forget solar, geo-thermal, wind – the way to reduce carbon emission is to bring those good ol’ boys Prachanda and Baburam into government and let the opposition revolt when its time to set fuel prices at market levels. Of course, all this is offset by the amount of methane John and Kanak have generated. They’re a 2 person coal-fired plant with no pollution control (see below).
The U.S. was indignant when Nepal's democratic political parties joined the Maoists to sign a 12-point agreement against the king. The Maoists agreed to enter mainstream politics, and the seven political parties agreed to begin revising the constitution to make it more inclusive. The U.S. has long maintained publicly that there is no military solution to Nepal's conflict. It fears that the Maoists are just using the established political parties as a Trojan horse to infiltrate and take over the country. Still, it is bewildering that Washington would find political dialogue unacceptable. Most Nepalese feel it is time to find out whether the Maoists are ready to forswear violence, reasoning that it's worth calling the insurgents' bluff, if it is one.
Kanak has always argued that Nepal had a dozen years of successful democracy after the monarchy was sidelined to a constitutional role in 1990. Just because Nepal's young democracy made mistakes, he said, was no reason to return to monarchical rule. The public rightly expects party leaders to run the government, not royalists in the palace or Maoists in the jungle. So why shouldn't they talk to the rebels?
Now, Professor BB is on the floor rolling around. Can’t write anymore.
Professor BB isn’t as smart as these two half-baked Bahunist clowns but all the Professor can tell is that the “People” have been duped while John Norris enjoys a special UN Post alongside Martin and Kanak Dixit, who for years has spewed bullshit and ineffective analysis and will not be remembered in Nepali History as an intellectual, journalist, or comedian but one with a un-gauzy propensity for unintentional humor. John’s just looking for a good paycheck like the rest of us.
Debunking the Democratic Dogma
Bahunists and Bahunism - No Room for feudal elements in the "new Nepal"
The greatest threat to peace in Nepal is misinformed, misguided, agenda-divine journalists like "The Guardian's" Isabel Hilton
Life is Good When You Are a Nepali Intellectual Elite
Tuesday, October 02, 2007
Civil society consists of all institutions that are inherently non-governmental in nature. It includes NGOs, media, trade associations, sports clubs, advocacy groups, and special interests.
While there is debate on a precise definition of Civil Society – most would agree that it is an essential component of well-functioning governments – democratic or otherwise. Modern democracies cannot function without a vibrant Civil Society.
Undemocratic governments are afraid of Civil Society – particularly political, religious, and social ones as they are abrasive to the well-being of undemocratic activities (try to imagine political NGOs in North Korea).
Civil society acts as a buffer between the people and the government. Despite our romanticism with the notion of “the people”, it is almost impossible at the individual level to further legislation, protect individual liberties, and engage in the very demanding task of placing checks on governmental power. Thus, hunters with an interest in protecting habitat (interestingly to ultimately kill game in that habitat), are best served by belonging to an association that promotes and protects their interest.
Nepal’s Civil Society consists of business, sports, social, political, health and religious interests and Nepalis (in Nepal or abroad) participate in a wide variety of clubs and associations.
The most visible and most vocal of the lot from Nepali Civil Society, of course, are the media and the Human Rights NGOs – the political component Civil Society. Notable (and extremely vocal yet boring) Civil Society members in Nepal are Devendra Raj Pandey, Kanak Mani Dixit, Sushil Pyakhurel, Dinesh Prasai, Krishna Pahadi, and Narayan Wagle.
They run a virtual monopoly on ideas.
They weigh in for us all on matters of critical importance ranging from recent incidents like Kapilvastu, the peace process, the elections, Maoists integration into government, the role of diplomats in Nepal’s political affairs, the Iraq war and any topic that has political, social, and at times, even artistic relevance.
That they prolifically comment on all issues makes them also incredibly boring but unfortunately, they also influence policy.
And that underscores the problem – or rather four problems.
First, the entire lot has a heavy leftist ideological bent – they all think like their masters in Human Rights Groups, left-wing professors, the United Nations, and some radically left EU countries.
Their collective thinking is characterized by a venal disdain or hatred of Western values (with special emphasis on the United States); a romantic notion of “peace” that humanity’s long history and basic principles of State governance (even democratic governance) does not validate; a willingness to appease anyone to ensure their analysis is “correct” – even if it results in great suffering to the very people they claim to protect; and a moral sanctimony that masks their character.
Second, they are cowards. During the demonstrations against the Royal regime, they were willing to protest on the streets, even getting arrested episodically and willing to travel to the EU, the United States, to spread the word about one of the world’s brutal regimes.
No superlative was out of bounds “crimes against humanity”, “genocide”, “Abu Ghraib”, “dirty war” were used with no regard to context. Never mind there was a real insurgency going on with individuals whose aim was and continues to be a totalitarian State.
A monarchy, after all, is bound by history and tradition and in our semi-cosmopolitan society, many people know each other and it is difficult to “eliminate” enemies of the State. History shows that an overwhelming amount of human tragedy occurred in secular, republican governments (Germany, Russia, China, Cambodia, North Korea). Thus, the real threat under the monarchy was limited.
But the Maoists are not bound by any historical or social restraints – and our political Civil Society knows this. Devendra Raj Pandey or Kanak Mani Dixit might have patted themselves in the back for their activism then because they knew they faced relatively benign threats under the royal regime.
So jail time during Jana-andolan became a revolving door to wear as a badge of honor to brag at an Embassy function with the good ‘ol boys from DFID but the game is turning deadly - as Kantipur publications and other media houses are learning.
While a Nepal Army Major that came into monitor the editors following Gyanendra’s takeover was characterized as an oaf to be laughed at, the all-knowing editors of Kantipur, Kathmandu Post, Nepali Times, and other publications are only painfully realizing that the Maoists mean deadly business.
The ridiculous yellow outfit that the “look-at-me” Krishna Pahadi wears is painfully apropos for Nepali Political Civil Society.
Third, they have political ambitions. Civil society’s role ends where government begins. While it would be naïve to believe that the boundary separating Civil Society and government is clean even in stable democracies, it is no secret that many of the political Civil Society members desperately crave positions in government.
They are known to pursue roles in parliament, for ambassadorships, and for other inherently government functions. This compromises their integrity and exposes them to the same forces that corrupt government officials.
Fourth, these individuals crave money and status the same way any other Nepali (or human being) does. Also their Masters in various international organizations have a vested interest to perpetuate their own salaries and missions – and duty in Nepal (or conflict-ridden country) is lucrative if you’re earning foreign currency.
Independent thinking is therefore severely corroded in this environment.
They parrot what their Masters believe and have never come across as principled fighters for stable government – for stable government requires force that causes pain on a certain segment of the population. Democratic societies have always been tested in maintaining order while also having to follow the rule of law.
But members of Civil Society never advocate this position – because of their uber-paranoia that bringing order might somehow benefit the King or the Nepali Army – and invalidate their utopian views of “peace.”
The psychologically-scarred Kanak Mani Dixit (did he get daily wedgies by in kindergarden by an Army brat?), who never ceases to amaze with his hand-wringing and fact-less rhetoric in the Nepali Times even as it become devastatingly clear what is happening in Nepal:
“By resigning from an unstable interim government, Pushpa Kamal Dahal has actually emboldened the king. The Nepal Army, unreformed for having carried on a dirty war on behalf of Gyanendra, is eagerly waiting for another opportunity to ‘serve’. We can thank Mr Dahal for this renewed ambition.”
If the Nepali Army, in what appears to be the last remaining functioning institution in Nepal, has to come in to prevent massive loss of life or even to keep the media functioning (with force, of course) – then would they have come in “to serve” the King?
And if they did, could not Kanak Dixit, who hasn’t managed to keep the press safe, let alone the country, once again get on his high-horse and claim the self-fulfilling analysis that Nepal Army actually came into “save” the King.
It’s a lose-lose situation for the State and it is this kind of loose thinking that is getting us to the brink of complete chaos.
But there is little counterweight or voice against members of existing Nepali Political Civil Society. Attempts at proposing alternative views are waved off as “royalist resurgence” as Kanak Dixit does above.
The day when individuals like Kanak Dixit, Devendra Raj Panday, Sushil Pyakhurel, Dinesh Prasai, and a cast of dozens and dozens from Nepali Civil Society can have principled individuals opposing them is when we will take another important step in establishing stable democracy in Nepal – if there remains a Nepal at that time.
No Impunity for Civil Society Leaders: Nepalis are watching.... http://nepaliperspectives.blogspot.com/2007/09/no-impunity-for-civil-society-leaders.html
The Nepali Times Gets it Wrong - Lazy Thinking and Unworthy Patronage of Maoists http://nepaliperspectives.blogspot.com/2007/09/nepali-times-gets-it-wrong-lazy.html
Revisiting Recent Nepali History - A brief Collection of "Inconvenient Truths" http://nepaliperspectives.blogspot.com/2007/07/revisiting-recent-nepali-history-brief.html
Life is Good When You Are a Nepali Intellectual Elite http://nepaliperspectives.blogspot.com/2007/06/life-is-good-when-you-are-nepali.html
Bahunists and Bahunism - No Room for feudal elements in the "new Nepal"
Monday, October 01, 2007
In a report submitted to the Nepal's transitional governing authority (TGA), the United Nations Electoral Expert Monitoring Team (EEMT) had stated that establishing an adequate security environment for the Constituent Assembly elections (CA) would be mainly contingent upon the cooperation between political parties, but not so much on the number of Police or arms deployed. But, ground realities tell a different story. Actually, inter-party cooperation alone has been insufficient. Establishing an adequate security environment will depend both on the numbers of deployed Police personnel and on the quality and effectiveness of the service provided.
As if abiding by the EEMT's counsel, the political parties in the ruling alliance had already been cooperating at a strategic level for quite some time now. Notwithstanding the minor squabbles and the current Maoist pull out from the TGA, the parties in the SPAM alliance have cooperated over major issues. They have satisfactorily cooperated in the power sharing process. In a conciliatory spirit, these political parties have divvied up the ministerial portfolios, compromised on the ambassadorial appointments, and increased the number of seats in the interim parliament to accommodate all parties in the alliance. Even with the recent Maoist withdrawal from the TGA, the eight party unity purportedly remains intact.
Such inter-party cooperation should have sufficed and effectuated a secure ambiance like the EEMT suggested. But despite such cooperation, the security environment has rather deteriorated abysmally. A culture of violence and radicalization is growing. Currently, there are close to a dozen armed groups operating in Nepal. Bloodletting continues. Extortion, abductions and other criminal activities remain rampant and unchecked. Ethnic tensions are escalating and the YCL terror continues unabated.
Following the April uprising, what has transpired is anything but consolidation of peace. The signing of the peace accords by two of the three protagonists of a tri-polar conflict has certainly halted major hostilities. But the cessation of the major hostilities has not engendered peace. On the contrary, public insecurities have skyrocketed.
This drastic surge in public insecurities is not only the result of rising threats but also due to the lack of mechanisms and capacity to mitigate these threats. All societies face threats of variable kinds. But in any functioning society, there are buffers designed to counter these threats. It is when these countermeasures fail, public insecurities escalate. This is exactly what has happened in Nepal. Public insecurities have spiked in leaps and bounds because the buffer that is supposed to shield the society from threats has crumbled.
Generally, public security is divided into external and internal realms. When threats arise from within the state's territory, threat mitigation falls under internal security system, namely the Police force. Likewise, when threats emanate from outside the national borders, it falls under external security system, namely the national army. In the current context, threats fomenting public insecurities are arising from within Nepal's territory. So the realm of threat mitigation falls under the rubric of internal security, i.e. it falls under the domain of the Police force.
Unfortunately, however, the National Police force - the organization designated with the tactical chore of providing public security has inherently become debilitated. The organization's authority has ebbed away over the years and now the organization teeters on the brink of impotence.
Ironically, the recent carnage in Kapilbastu serves as quintessential reminder as to what has become of the Police force. The trickling reports on the incidents heap substantial blame on the Police, mainly pointing to their inability to prevent the melee. Seemingly, they remained as mere indifferent spectators unwilling to intervene. The reports further states that had the Police intervened, the melee could have been thwarted.
This is not the first time the Police have been accused of such passivity. In similar incidents, video footage of the Nepalgunj communal riots showed the Police standing idly not enforcing their writ while marauding mobs went on a rampage. Also, in Kupondole, while Maoist cadres attacked a group protesting against Maoist atrocities, the Police watched powerlessly.
These incidents are not isolated incidents. Sadly, the utter laxity displayed by the Police reflects a growing norm throughout the country. Today, as YCL activities trample on its authority uninhibited, the Police personnel have become powerless. Due to its inability to counter such encroachment over its authority and the failure to check YCL transgressions, public confidence has sagged to an all time low. As a result, its authority is being brazenly challenged and increasingly defied. Further, the human-rights activism has added to its woes. Fretful of being tagged as a human -rights violator, it seems inaction has become more preferable.
The precarious predicament of the Police force, however, is not a recent phenomenon. Rather, the organization has degraded over the years and the current trend of events has only added to its plight. Overt political intrusion and flagrant corruption sapped out professionalism from the organization. Such loss of professionalism has in turn led to the decay in public trust and faith.
Another component that compounded the disastrous decay of the organization is the Maoist insurgency. When the then government decided to haphazardly mobilize the ill-equipped, inexperienced and ill-trained Police to counter the Maoist threat, the repercussions were grave.
First, given that the Maoists were waging a war against the State, for them, the Police embodied the state. Thus, the Police naturally became their mortal enemy and the primary targets for the rebels.
Second, ill crafted counter insurgency operations back fired. Operations like Romeo and Kilo Serra victimized many innocent people - who later went on to become willing recruits for the Maoists. Hence, a venture designed to extinguish the conflict, ended up flaring it.
Third, while the Police personnel were being sadistically massacred during the Maoist raids, there was little sympathy or assistance. The army shackled by the constitutional prerogatives never came to its rescue until it was daringly attacked in Dang in 2001. For the most part, the public and civil-society remained apathetic. And the political parties in the government had no remedies.
Fourth, even when the concocted remedy did arrive in the form of Armed Police Force (APF), it still inadvertently hurt the beleaguered organization. APF was resurrected from scratch to assist the Police in its battle against Maoist insurgents. However, due to lucrative perks, it lured many Police personnel into joining the newly formed organization. The formation of the APF also took a large chunk of the counter-insurgency budget with it. All of this cost the Police its manpower, monetary support and morale. As a result, the Maoist insurgency left a scarring sense of abandonment and helplessness in the Police force.
Also, with the formation of APF, the Police was pushed further down in the hierarchy of the security agencies and its unrivalled authority in internal security was diluted. At one point it was only bullied and belittled by the Army. But with the entry of the APF in the pecking order, the Police was further relegated to a lower status.
Ultimately, no other organization bore the brunt of the insurgency more than the Police force. The toll was not just the 1400 Police lives lost or the thousands injured, but what critically drooped as a consequence was public faith in the organization, and morale of the personnel. On top of that, it had to share with the APF, its manpower, budget, and authority.
To add to its ill fortunes, now with the entry of Maoists in the political mainstream and especially in the ruling alliance, the organization’s morale is further dented. Operating under the authority of the once mortal enemy has been quite discomfiting. Further, the YCL's own form of policing and highhandedness has been more humiliating and infringing upon it proper authority.
Despite such a depressed condition of the Police, hardly has a voice been raised to highlight this critical issue. Even those like Rajendra Bahadur Singh, the former AIG, whom many in the force reckoned as a bastion for raising the dire concerns of his fellow officers, have now been relegated into irrelevance.
Turning a blind eye to this issue, however, is more detrimental to the Nepali polity than it is to the Police force. How can peace endure in the absence of public security? How can a democratic society flourish when there is no mechanism to protect the freedom and liberty of individuals? How can a society function when law of the land cannot be enforced? Regardless of who governs, what becomes of the status quo of a state which lacks the capacity to enforce its own laws and establish a monopoly on the use of force within its territory?
The answers to these questions revealingly indicate the significance and relevance of effective policing. The Police force is not just scrawny, baton wielding individuals decked in riot gear. Neither is their duty solely confined to crowd control and criminal catching. Rather, they have a much greater role. The organization is an indispensable instrument of the State designated with the duty of maintaining law and order. Even more importantly, they are ordained with the cardinal task of legitimizing the state's monopoly on the use of force through a commitment to the rule of law. Above all, it is the vital organization that ensures the proper functioning of the society by preventing it from degenerating into anarchy.
Furthermore, since Nepal is in the transitional phase after a violent conflict, the role of Police has become more important than ever. Restoring public security in the aftermath of conflict is a crucial element of any post-conflict peace-building agenda. Also, establishing rule of law is a fundamental precondition to lasting and self-sustaining peace. And effective policing caters to that need.
In what can be characterized as a lawless interregnum, the failure to enforce law and order has had profound implications in the normalization process. Hence, the State needs to develop the capacity to impose a full-spectrum security to sustain peace. And in order to accomplish that goal, empowerment of the Police force is vital.
Empowerment of the Police necessitates both the Police and the public to act in concert. Since there is a huge gulf of mistrust between the Police and the public, confidence building measures need to be explored to bridge that gap. As a starting point, to win public support, the Police need to be sincerely committed to public service and perform their designated duties as required by their job descriptions and the law. The public, on the other hand, should give the Police the recognition it deserves.
Additionally, the Home Ministry and the Minister need to refrain from excessively meddling in Police affairs and need to provide more room for independent manoeuvring. The Police force is a national instrument, not some dowry at the disposal of the Home Minister. Home Ministry's call for selective enforcement of law and order not only corrodes the authority of the Police but also tarnishes the organization’s pubic image. Therefore, empowering the Police also entails uniform law enforcement, notwithstanding political affiliation or affluence of the individual.
In sum, amongst the innumerable requirements necessary for sustainability of peace, the protagonists' commitment to cooperate is mandatory. But alongside, there are other components equally important as those commitments. Finding ways to simultaneously stabilize the public security situation, and build up domestic law and order capacities remains a key peace-building challenge in Nepal. And such a challenge necessitates effective policing. Until it dawns upon all about the indispensability of an effective Police force, the functioning of Nepali society and the sustainability of ongoing peace process will remain imperilled
Ordinary Nepali Realities vs. Extraordinary Nepali Dreams
Nepal's Constituent Assembly Elections - It's not Just a Matter of Security
The greatest threat to peace in Nepal is misinformed, misguided, agenda-divine journalists like "The Guardian's" Isabel Hilton
UNMIN's "Consulting" Mentality Not Conducive to Nepal's "Stakeholder" Needs
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