This is a classic test of strength. This king has laid grounds for a head-on collision.
- Monarchists Vs The Rest
- Autocracy Vs Democracy
- Article 127 Vs Constituent Assembly
This king will not compromise. He instead will be pushed out.
The guy wishes he were a politician. But he does not want to contest elections himself. Like someone who wants to be a writer, but does not want to write.
Is he more capable than the politicians in the country? That question would arise if he were to abdicate his throne and get into the mud of the electoral fray. Right now it is not a question of competence, it is a question of legitimacy.
But he fails also on the issue of competence. Measured in terms of the number of lives lost, ever since his activist monarchy got under way, Nepal has seen a rapid escalation of the insurgency.
When you are only one step away from a position of power - "we talked about everything," as he likes to say about his elder Birendra - it is tempting to think you can do it better. After having engineered a near total external isolation, this genius of a king has now magically given a common minimum program to the democrats and the Maoists, and is headed for a near total internal isolation as well.
He seems to think there is a buffer. That he will repress to the fullest so as to smother the movement. But if push comes to shove, he will compromise with the parties. It is a gamble where he either gains a lot, or loses nothing. That is not how things stand. The gamble instead is that he stands to lose everything.
He does not realise that. Not yet. He never might.
I guess monsoon might give the king a reprieve of three months. But then things stand to snowball. I would think this regime should not see winter.
In The News
- Nepal king rules out early power handover:- Webindia123, India Gyanendra has ruled out early handover of power to the political parties or immediate restoration of the dissolved lower house of parliament....... the monarch Sunday called the editors of 16 Nepalese weeklies, regarded as being pro-palace, to the Narayanhity royal palace to covey his views..... the king said he had sacked Deuba and taken over the government on Feb 1 to "put an end to the Maoist terrorism, establish peace and conduct parliamentary elections to hand over power to elected representatives of people"...... "I cannot rest till I accomplish all this" .... "It was done constitutionally, on the recommendation of the prime minister, and the Supreme Court upheld the action," the king reportedly told the editors. "As the custodian of the constitution, I cannot go against its provisions. There is no parliamentary provision to revive the house." .......
- Arm-twisting Nepal Nepali Times, Nepal The parties together have the means to land a few thousand banner-waving cadres at Asan Chok, but they know the public mood is still skeptical. The party jatras are a joke for most people, others just fume at the government’s incompetence to keep the traffic moving....... The EU sahibs have to answer this: would your voters tolerate such corruptible leaders in your own union? ..... Nepal’s foreign friends must know how condescending they sound lecturing to us on democracy. We know and value democracy, and at present the public opinion is to let the political party leaders that squandered democratic gains to wilt in the wilderness where they can do no more harm........ If Nepal is seen as drifting increasingly northward, it is only because of the tectonic push from south of the border.
- Nepalese king defends take-over as politicians vow to restore ...
Financial Express.bd"In keeping with the popular will as well as the nation's demands, we were compelled to take the decision," the king said in a televised speech at state-run Tribhuvan University. "This decision was taken in the interest of the nation, people and democracy and the understanding displayed by all those who have faith in democracy and love the motherland is appreciable indeed," ...... Nepal's seven main political parties vowed to wage a fight to the finish to restore democracy...... The Maoists have thrown their backing behind the parties' pro-democracy campaign. But the parties are insisting the rebels lay down arms before agreeing to work with them. ...... "We wish to see political parties becoming popular and effective, engaging in the exercise of a mature multi-party democracy dedicated to the welfare of th nation and people and to peace and good governance, in accordance with the people's aspirations," he said.
- Nepal King vows to activate elected bodies in 3 years Hindu, India ..... Gyanendra on Friday pledged to activate all elected bodies within a three-year time frame...... he said a favourable atmosphere had been created in the country to hold municipality elections .... the gradually improving peace and security situation ...... King also hinted that he was ready for dialogue with political parties ...... "We have constantly held discussions with everyone and in the interest of the nation, people and democracy and we will continue to do so in future also"
- Chaos, quite Himalayan Indian Express, India ...... The Left parties have been particularly vocal about the undesirability of India resuming the supply of military aid to the kingdom..... India should be working towards persuading the king to revive democratic activity in Nepal through the restoration of the constituent assembly.
- Gyanendra pledges to activate all elected bodies in 3 years Zee News, India .....
- Some Words On ABCs Of Nepali Journalism United We Blog Let me again talk about Nepali journalism. There is no freedom of expression here. Media are censored, indirectly. Most of them are forced to self censor. So, at a time when A and C are under threat, B becomes totally irrelevant..... I am for democracy and cannot promote autocracy. If I have to do so, I would rather leave journalism and go to the streets shouting slogans.
- State-Friendly Textbooks And Other Versions Of Truth United We Blog Intimidation, torture and killing are not sufficient to control people. Dictators try to impose, by hook or crook, their own brand of truth on people to legitimize their rule....... the self-appointed guardians of nationalism in Nepal are up to is introduce new school-textbooks, by means of which they will create their own version of truth ..... They plan to turn the students into mental slaves rather than freethinkers...... the ‘state-friendly’ education will unnecessarily teach students to extol the unwanted virtues of one particular family and caste ..... pictures of King, Queen, Crown Prince and Crown Princess in these new textbooks. It will spread the regime’s ideology ...... government is coming up with personality-oriented books ...... The chapters on multi-party democracy and its fighters, it is expected, will be removed. Autocratic Panchayet system will again be termed as a system suitable for Nepali environment. In fact, authorities have already issued verbal orders not to teach some chapters of books like social science that deal with Panchayat system. And, students will be taught the lesson of ‘one language, one nation’........ King needs three years not to bring the country back to normalcy, but dismantle all the democratic structures ...... will lead to the absence of independent imagination, vibrancy and pluralism in the society
- Reading Between The Lines Of Royal Decisions United We Blog Chairman Khatri, in front of the whole world, shamelessly interrupted Member Sushil Pyakural in Geneva meeting recently when Pyakural was talking about HR violations after Feb 1...... Gokul Pokhrel.. former editor of state-owned daily Gorkhapatra, is the only person in Nepal who expressed negatively of the royal takeover in English language and strongly advocated the same in Nepali language...... Dr Ram Dayal Rakesh? ..... Ian Martin, the UN guy, needs to work hard. Nepalis can’t trust this Commission for their rights....... why Narahari Acharya and Ram Chandra Paudel are not released? Just because they presented different views regarding monarchy in Nepal even before Feb 1? Acharya talked about major restructuring of governance and direct election of the PM. Paudel once talked about Nirmal Niwas and Maoists in the same sentence.
- Nepal Parties Show Their Strength In Kathmandu United We Blog ..... today’s
seven rallies (originating from different locations and later merged into
the unified mass meeting) .... Filled mostly with active cadres of the seven
agitating parties, the mass meeting was addressed by top leaders of the
political forces. Organizers previously claimed to gather around 30 thousand people in New Baneshwor. But independent estimates put the number somewhere around 13 thousands....... “this is just a beginning of Jana Andolan” ..... While central level leaders were giving long and somewhat tiresome (especially by CP Mainali) speeches, traffic at the main road of New Baneshwor was smooth and busy. General public seemed to be giving less or no attention to the mass meeting. I was amazed. ..... Girija Prasad Koirala, Nepali Congress President and the main attraction of the gathering, told that the King “is trying to build the network of tyranny inside a dark room ...... “The king orchestrated the naked dance of autocracy on Feb 1,” Koirala
told the mass. “There were so many kings in the world,” 83 year old leader said, “but because of doing these kinds of things they disappeared from history.”CPN UML leader Jhalanath Khanal challenged the royal regime to come up
with facts for a debate about democratic era of the 90s. “The Panchayati autocrats build just 6 thousand KMs of road in 30 year,” he said, “but we build 16 thousand road in just over a decade.” He also said that the only 10 percent population had access to electricity in Panchayat period. “Now, its 40 percent. Literacy rate was 10 percent in Panchayat kaal and now its 50 percent.” He also invited the Maoists to give up violence and join the seven party agitation. “You are talking about Constituent Assembly,” he said, “and we are also talking about the same these days. So, lets join our hands together. Give up violence.” ....... no experiments from king would be acceptable to parties now onwards ..... He warned the regime not to play with a cat in a locked room. “That will kill you.” ..... ......
- Jana Andolan 2062 Photos
- Nothing Improved In 100 Days by Dr Pramod Aryal United We Blog With a vast swathe of the country under Maoist influence and the half of the security apparatus deployed to protect the palace from untoward situations, any governance outside of Kathmandu and district headquarters has been crippled. His desire to reign and rule like a medieval absolute monarch has made him not the King, but the mayor of greater Kathmandu. The daunting task for Nepalese is to first bring the “Monarchy” under the law and then resolve the Maoist problem....... contrary to the understanding King Tribhuvan ruled through interim constitutions and put military under his command ..... in 1980 when King Birendra did not institute promised reforms in the Panchayat after the referendum ...... now onward, resolving any contentious political issues should be by empowering people rather than pseudo reconciliation. ....... Maoists had assured, in writing, acceptance of the preamble of the Constitution of 1991 if the army will be either directly under control of the civilian government or parliament........ the statement by Prachanda to support the movement as much as possible should be taken into consideration as an indication of readiness for a negotiated settlement with the parties ...... the Kings henchmen who decry the political parties may, to justify a brutal crushing of the movement, use this to infiltrate peaceful demonstrations to instigate violence and cause a bloodbath. The situation is so explosive that if an amicable solution is not found right now, several institutions, including monarchy could be dismantled....... a progressive constitution, drafted and promulgated by constituent assembly, clearly explaining the rights of Dalits, Janjatis, minorities, and different nationalities, and devolving political-economic power from the center to the grassroots will address the political concerns of all protagonists and prevent Nepal from exploding.
- Ramesh, Rukum And Red Songs United We Blog I was in Rukum, West Nepal, from May 14 to 23, 2005. I was there with security forces in district headquarter and Maoists’ in most of the villages..... When I was in villages I heard more ‘Janawadi Song’s. ‘We’re Red Men, We’re Peoples’ men….( Hami Rata Manchhe, Janataka Manchhe) aired by Maoists’ Special Region Program (94 FM). ......
- How About Nepali Cinema And Clinton's Dog? United We Blog “Nepali cinema and Saddam Hussein” or “The Role of George W Bush in Neapli cinema” or “Historical Importance of Mahatma Gandhi in Nepali Cinema” or “Contribution of Stephen Hawking in Nepali Cinema” or “Nepali Cinema and Pulitzer (not Academy, remember) Prize"...... “Nepali Cinema and Buddy.” ..... royalists in Nepal want us to do such weird things...... “The Role of Monarchy in the Development of Nepali Film". “The Development of Nepali Film and Monarchy on the Background of Human Civilization and Film"...... The final version of the schedule will be released “soon” after the palace approval. “Queen will be inagurating the show,” Thapa told me....... Nepali Chalchitra Ko Bikash Ma Rajsanstha Ko Bhumika..... Manab Savyata Ra Chalchitra Ko Pristhabhumi Ma Nepali Chalchitra Ko Bikash Ra Raj Sanstha....... a painting competition on the theme: Neapali Film and Monarchy"......
- NEPAL: Donor agencies justify aid suspension Reuters AlertNet, UK Despite declarations by Maoist leaders that aid projects and staff would not be harmed as long as they didn't carry any political bias, the Maoists have not been able to live up to their promises....... a certain level of fear among the development community as to whether the Maoist leaders are able to control their junior cadres, especially the more militant members ....... RCIW has so far remained highly transparent in both financial dealings and programme activities, which are the main reasons why the Maoist leaders have welcomed and even cooperated with organisations working with such model projects...
- SOUTH ASIA: Maoist Overture to Enter Nepal's Mainstream Politics? Inter Press Service (subscription), World Nepal's Maoists have the sympathy of India's communist parties which, after the last elections in May, emerged stronger than ever before and are influential for the fact that they lend critical outside support to the Congress-led, United Progressive Alliance ruling coalition........ Karat carefully denied the role of Indian security agencies but steered away from categorically denying any rendezvous with Bhattarai...... Bhattarai and Karat needed no help from Indian security agencies if they wanted to meet each other since they were both students together at Jawaharlal Nehru University during the 1970s. ''No solution to Nepal's problems is possible without taking the Maoists on board although unfortunately the fact remains that official India, especially the External Affairs Ministry has refused to touch them with a barge pole'' ...... Bhattarai, who advocates better coordination between the Maoists and mainstream Nepalese political parties in order to isolate the king....... ''The fear that Nepal's political parties could forge an alliance with the Maoists was a restraining factor with the hawks in the New Delhi-Washington-London axis'' ........ Said Roka: ''The reality is that stability in Nepal now depends on the twin pillars of multi-party democracy and the mainstreaming of the Maoists.''
- Delhi flays Nepal Maoists; Karat denies secret meeting
Peninsula On-linePrakash Karat, the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPM) general secretary, also denied meeting Nepalese Maoist leader Baburam Bhattarai, whom he has known since his days at the Jawaharlal Nehru University here. Karat did meet Nepal Maoists, admits party Hindustan Times, India A secret meeting between CPI-M General Secretary Prakash Karat and top Maoist leaders of Nepal did take place in the second week of this month, according to CPI-M central committee leaders ..... Karat told the Maoists to give up violence and join the political mainstream ...... Prachand said the objective of the meetings was to gauge India’s stand if the CPN(Maoist) were to accept a multi-party system as a political solution to the ongoing civil war in Nepal, and agreed to work with other political parties in a constituent assembly....... Karat, a friend of Bhattarai during their days in JNU ...... Prachand said, "Taking constituent assembly as the means of minimum political solution, the party is maintaining relations with different political parties and forces not only within the country but of the world including India, Europe and US." .......
- Nepal King at receiving end
Times of India Nepal’s Polity at The Crossroads Navhind Times, India The King’s initial plans to play one big power against the other, in a typical Cold War fashion, failed to yield any greater mileage to him...... By March, it became clear to the powers in Kathmandu that Islamabad would not like to get involved in the developments in Nepal, as Washington disapproved of them. Also, King Gyanendra’s plans to divide the Maoists, too has not met with any success. According to the UN Human Rights Commission, the Maoist ranks are swelling. In the past three months, approximately 3,000 new cadres have joined........ a qualitative change in the country’s polity is imminent. ...... the RNA is unhappy with King Gyanendra since he assumed the throne. The King is frequently asking the Army to restore normalcy in the Kingdom, than at any time in the past. In addition, the disapproval of the King’s actions by India and Britain have their own repercussions on the RNA. The soldiers, popularly knows as Gorkhas, serve in the Indian and British armies; and over the years both the countries have developed pockets of influence in the RNA. In this situation, Indian and British actions of the past few months are creating new uncertainties........ it has only one-month’s supply. Therefore, the question of the King achieving a decisive victory over Maoists without military aid from external powers seems highly unlikely........ second scenario could be the RNA staging a palace coup and capturing power ..... during his two-and-half year’s rule King Gyanendra proved to be a not so competent a ruler. He alienated both the political parties and the common man. With the result, he has to permanently depend on the RNA to retain his power. Reports from Kathmandu also show that due to the King’s actions the predominant role of the RNA in Nepal’s polity is slowly being eroded.......... third scenario could be the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoists) managing to overthrow the monarchy and Parliament and coming to power....... the Maoists are successful in running a parallel government in areas where their influence is substantial. With the Nepali middle class reportedly sympathizing with the Maoists, the latter’s clout is increasing in Nepal’s polity....... In conservative Nepal, the prospects of a revolution are rather bleak...... Gyanendra may go back to status quo ante. He may re-introduce the multi-party system ....... One need not be surprised if the role of monarchy is further eroded in the coming months.......