Monday, December 31, 2012

Mohan Baidya Has A Point

When all is said and done Nepal will have ended up like India, not China. India does not have a monarchy. India has federalism. The Indian democracy is not my idea of an attempt at classlessness. (China is not my idea of a democracy, but that is another topic.)

So far the Baidya-Badal group has used the party split as a pressure tactic upon the mother party. If you correct your ways we will reunite is the message.

Consolidating the achievements made so far - republic, secularism, federalism - is a sound strategy on the parts of the likes of Baburam Bhattarai. A Maoist return to an armed insurgency will simply undo the concrete achievements without bringing forth the classic Maoist dictatorship.

If an armed insurgency is not an option and if becoming India-like is not enough, what is to be done? I believe that option is non-violent. And it turns Nepal into a democracy unlike India, and gives Nepal a political system different from China.

The goal has to be to write a constitution in which Nepal is a multi-party democracy in which human rights, as defined by the UN Charter on the same, are guaranteed, but one where political parties are 100% funded by the state according to a formula that is democratic, the obvious one being you get funds in proportion to the number of votes you collect in an election.

When you take money out of politics like that you turn Nepal into a one person, one vote democracy. That makes the poor actively participate, that makes politicians want to invest lavishly in human capital, in education, in health and in credit availability.

In such a democracy the market forces will be given plenty of play. But there will also be options for the state to become part or majority shareholders in companies/corporations. You will not have nationalized industries, but you can have industries the state participates in. The state owning 5% or 10% or 20% of a company might be an interesting experiment in people power without muzzling the market forces. China will tell you the market is the best way to create wealth there ever was.

So I do think Mohan Baidya has a point. But another armed insurgency - "urban revolt" - is not a good option. The best option is in the constitution writing itself. A Nepal that is a multi-party democracy of completely state funded parties is a democracy better than what exists in India, in Britain, in America. And it will be a much better political system than China. China is only now gearing for political reform. That will mean more openness in its political system. Baidya should learn from China.

Where Mohan Baidya does not have a point is in thinking xenophobia is nationalism. His thinking equality for the Madhesis of Nepal is an Indian agenda is racist thinking. He should also learn from China about foreign direct investment (FDI). The more the merrier, China would tell Baidya. Baidya's stance on BIPPA, frankly, is stupid, it is ignorant. Politicians like Baidya would rather send young Nepali women to brothels in Mumbai than bring in FDI so jobs can be created for those women right there in Nepal.

CA demise deepens crisis
The 601-member Assembly, that was hailed as one of the most representative elected body ever in Nepali history saw its unceremonious demise at midnight on May 27 without producing the new constitution. ..... federalism is the major cause of CA´s dissolution .... With the emergence of caucuses comprise of cross-party lawmakers, these groups at times even challenged the whips of their respective parties on crucial issues such as determining a federal model...... leaders from ´traditional´ political parties mainly Nepali Congress and CPN-UML played negative role in the CA. ..... Congress President Sushil Koirala was the one who had for the first time lobbied against CA term extension by holding press conference immediately after then Law Minister Krishna Sitaula, from his own party, registered a bill to extend the CA at parliament. ..... In the absence of parliament, the country has been trapped in a quagmire. The political parties have neither a proper place to form new government nor a House to amend constitution to pave the way for new elections.
Year of dysphoria
Where did one of the most unemotional people on the planet find the energy to pursue the path leading towards freedom, equality and justice in the Spring Uprising 2006 and the Madhesh Uprisings 2007? ..... “Nobody would have a federal constitution if he could possibly avoid it.” His acolytes in Nepal are busy exploring all avenues of avoiding federalism and limiting it to decentralization as a concession. Devolution without recognition of identity can be termed de-concentration or decentralization, but not federalism. .... inclusion is the second most hated word in contemporary Nepal after federalism. ..... The legislature failed to resolve contradictions inherent in its composition and meekly accepted the supremacy of the judiciary. The judiciary in turn decided that the legislature had outlived its utility and declared that it must commit hara-kiri on a designated date. The executive ignored the wishes of the legislature, honored the directives of the court, and killed the mother that had birthed it. .... On every issue of concern of the marginalized and externalized population—democracy, federalism, inclusion, secularism and welfare economy—by and large the Nepali media stood solidly behind traditional forces. .... After his cooptation by banker, builder and business house nexus, the performance of Baburam Bhattarai has been extremely underwhelming. The tragedy is that all his likely successors appear equally uninspiring.
Social Democratic Party unveiled
The newly formed party has a 63-member central committee, including a seven-member presidium. The presidium accommodates Chaitanya Subba, Kumar Rai, Bam Kumari Budha Magar, Pasang Sherpa, Dalmardan Kami, Jyoti Danuwar and Nima Gyaljen Sherpa ..... SDP´s manifesto has four parts. In the introductory part of the manifesto, it has been claimed that the party has adopted the principle of federalism, social democracy, indigenism and pluri-nationalism. ..... The party has claimed that the characteristic of the state power has remained unchanged to date, with a particular class and race dominating the state power and politics. ...... It has stated that political parties, bureaucracy, civil society, media and intellectual society, which are dominated by elite and high caste, have stood against ethnicity-based federalism, right to self-determination, ethnic and regional autonomy.
Major parties seek five more days to form unity govt
राष्ट्रपतिसंग थप समय माग्ने संकेत
एकीकृत माओवादीका प्रवक्ता अग्नि सापकोटाले छैठौं म्याद पनि गुज्रिएपछि राष्ट्रपतिलाई के भन्ने त्यसबारे आफ्नो पार्टीको धारणा प्रष्ट भइनसकेको स्वीकारे। .... पुष २५ गतेसम्ममा सहमति नजुटे संविधानसभा पुनर्स्थापना गर्नु पर्ने विकल्प सत्तारुढ दलका नेताहरुले यसै साता अघि सारे।
KC comes down heavily upon UCPN (M)
Neutral government won’t deliver May election
political parties to sort out and recommend an agreeable government to take the country to elections. He has, until now, played a constructive role and has wide popularity so I don’t think he’d do anything that is not recommended by political parties. Second, those who are arguing in favour of a neutral government have a misguided perception.
भारतीय बिदेशमन्त्रीले राष्ट्रपतिलाई पाँच पटक भेटे
भारतले मिलाउँदैन, आफैं मिल्नुपर्छः राष्ट्रपति
राष्ट्रपतिको सवारीले दिउँसो दुई बजेदेखि ४ बजेसम्म राजधानीको ट्राफिक अस्तव्यस्त भएको थियो । राष्ट्रपति भारत जाँदा पनि सडकमा 'अघोषित कर्फ्यु' लगाउँदा दिनभर सडक अस्तव्यस्त भएको थियो ।
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