**© Jagadish C Wagle**
Nepal Constitution-2047 was a combined spirit of Nepali Congress (democratic forces), King and communist. Then, it was understood that no one was left out the door as all stakeholders of the power had joined the multi-party system. But now we don’t have the constitution.
‘’The spirit of the 1990 popular movements and restoration of multi-party system in April 1990, promulgation of a new Constitution in November 1990 (2047 BS), general elections 1991 and local elections 1992, was smooth ….setting up democratic institutions. The stability of the obtaining democratic structures is ensured by the Constitution providing for popular sovereignty, constitutional monarchy, multi-party parliamentary system, and fundamental rights of citizens.’’ (Hachhethu, K). Nepali congress had majority of members in the parliament. Suddenly parliament was dissolved and recommended for mid-term poll. Nepal had experienced 8 governments during the five years of hung parliament (November1994 to May 1999).
Without sufficient reasons it was an immature political game to dissolve the parliament. Some vested group behind the curtain had certainly been hatching the conspiracy against the democracy. Only farsighted leaders could see the output; however it was not the case. So-called Maoist communist went to the jungle and carrying guns against democracy and killed more than 13 thousands innocent people. As a whole, the mid-term election put the nation in trouble.
The Maoists war was sparked by several factors. It is believed that neighbouring missions in Nepal are their security interest and grabbing solely natural resources. Western missions are to get ripe Tibetan game plan. Dissident Royalist wants their power back. Even the Nepalese Army wants to be more sophisticated by creating security demands. No one’s missions have been accomplished yet. So they all were covered under the so-called people’s war. Although a group of Maoist led by Prachanda have claimed that the battle has been settled. But another group led by Mohan Baidhya claimed that Maoism has been defeated or given up. Both communists need further actions either by capturing the state or street. Actors are still stoking the fire.
Again, is that a group of communist led by Baidya going to jungle?! Answer could be either yes or no. But it is true that there are some vacancies, only the question is whether they are appropriate candidate.
Democracy in Nepal has become more vulnerable as the county is moving ahead towards the federalism and secularism. There is no point seeking Indian support only for democracy and Chinese support only for communism as they are very concern of their national interests. ‘’History shows that bigger countries have the policy and tendency to dominate smaller countries’’ (KTM Post). Nepal is a tiny country in between of two big nations as like yam between two boulders. But she deserves rich in natural resources able to feed to both up. In such a situation new policies of international relations with respect to Nepal’s interest must be agreed on mutual benefits.
Monarchism in Nepal had been demolished formally after the royal genocide of king Birendra. Ganendra was announced the King by Raj Sabha (King’s Assembly) but not appointed by the people’s parliament. By the time he was so hated. Parties would have opposed immediately if they did not want him to be an heir of monarchism. So there is no point of claiming the monarchism has been thrown by so-called people’s war. Now Gyanendra is trying to regain the power. He has been asking some role. It is true that he agreed with the parties to reinstate the dissolved parliament. But he has claimed that the reinstated parliament where Maoist were included through political agreement thrown him was unconstitutional conspiracy against monarchism. He has been asking decisions must be taken from national referendum.
The Non Resident Indian (NRI) in the UK had recently organised a yoga programme at Lampton Park, Hounslow (22 September, 2013). They presented a gift of photo frame to Baba Ramdev. In the picture Ramadeva and Narendra Modi were gossiping each other. The message is clear that Narendra Modi, a Hindu leader, is obviously be supported by Sadhu-Santa (holy men) and internationally it has been facilitated by the NRI as the next prime minister of India. Because Indians are looking for charismatic leadership rather than holding old Manmohan Singh or still to be tested young Rahul Gandhi. If it goes right Gyanendra might gain some power from the Indian changes too.
Madhes based parties don’t want to raise even a single question although their voters are crying in flood, encroachment, and other border issue. Tharus seem to be a big obstacle for the one madhes one prades. So Bijaya Gachhadar a potential Tharu leader (!) has been grassed for a long to make their voice weak. Royalist Kamal Thapa, Janajati, and Madhes based parties will definitely gain better position in the election that makes established force weaker. Hence people will be divided from top to bottom so that they will be unable to work together for an interest.
Army has been assigned the security job of election, may not keep quite. Military organizations need to be more resourceful by any chance. Just couple of days ago a ‘controversial stance’ came from the Chief of Nepalese Army when he was on a week-long official visit to India. He said ‘’Indian Army is capable of giving strong response to China in case of an attack of war’’ (KTMPost, 6 October 2013). Is that a good posture for a smallest country need to be balanced with two biggest neighbors?!
Considering above scenarios the question is obvious that whether the Constituent Assembly-II going to accomplish its job in Nepal? How such aspirations will be addressed? Constituent Assembly is the best among the alternatives. But it is not easy as saying. To represent right and deserving candidate in the Assembly is definitely a hard task. Do we really need 601 members to make a constitution? Are they all aware of their role and responsibility? Are they accountable? Have they already gained sufficient expertise? Will they be trained to work for the national interest in the due course as they are going to outline the fate of the country? We already had 601 members in the dissolved Constituent Assembly and unable to deliver the constitution then why have we made the same size from the back door?! Why was dissolved it? Nepalese people are no more interested to hear any fabricated answer. They have already faced lots of betrayal and conspiracy from the political parties in the past as parties failed to deliver the expected democratic practices and national interest.
Of course, we have been cooking Khichadee (cooking rice with pulses) in the pot of Constitution Assembly since 2007. All internal forces are getting confused what to do or what not to do. Due to the lack of supreme leadership and a national vision country is becoming an open playground for the invisible hands.
Because of their different agendas there is less chance of taking unanimous decision on the national issues between the parties who are contesting the election. And 33 parties led by Baidya are opposing the election will distract the political track. It seems that it is still hard to promulgate the constitution in the Constituent Assembly-II as well. So before something happens unexpected, NC should understand the historical role and they have to make some strategies to make people integrated and the winner. Otherwise after this election NC and CPN UML will be even far from the people. Other actors will be seen in the picture as final touch of destruction is being hatched in the name of great political change.