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Tough times

Thursday, January 19th, 2012
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Just when we thought that the Supreme Court deadline finally sent alarms ringing in the Constituent Assembly, the parties have once again locked horns over governance and state structure. While the Nepali Congress and the UML have teamed up with sixteen parties in favor of ‘improved’ parliamentary system, the Maoists have patched up their internal rift to counter the opposition.

The Madhesi parties have not come out openly in favor of the directly elected executive, which explains their reservations about the system. But as long as they are in the government, it is unlikely they will come in support of the parliamentary system either. In any case, as long as the parties do not engage in coming up with a workable model that is agreeable to all, wasting their time in trying to impose their line on the other, there is little hope things will move ahead.
In an effort to pressurise one another, the parties are opening side fronts. The Maoists have refused to budge on the integration while the NC is stalling CA proceedings over government’s decision to legalise the decisions taken by Maoist ‘People’s government’ during the years of conflict. The Madhesi front has been already threatening to bring down the government over the 4-point deal, which the other parties have rejected.

All this is unfolding on the backdrop of a 14 hour electricity cut, severe fuel shortages inspite of fresh hike in the prices and steadily rising food prices. The incidences of crime is once again making headlines and the picture of an ex-Minister in handcuffs, arrested on charges of kidnapping of a businessman has become a national shame. The Prime Minister is so stressed out that he has taken a leave and headed to Dhulikhel.

This is not how the people of this country wanted to begin their new year.

Anurag Acharya

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