Nepali Times
Resam Firiri


The only thing more embarrassing than not being able to appoint Nepali ambassadors for over a year is the fact that we still don't have a national anthem. So, while the Marseilles played at the Bastille Day celebrations last week, we didn't have our own anathema. No one listens to us Asses, but in a previous column we had recommended announcing Resam Firiri as our interim anthem at least until Byakul Maila's lyrics are put into song. But given the vacillation on ambassadorships, how can one be sure the eight parties will like the new national tune and actually adopt it?


Anyone who was stranded last week at the airport because of the lightning strike by taxi drivers will have used a lot of bad words unprintable here (like *&% of a $#@"+ or even ?^&~=*) to describe the drivers of the 50-year-old taxis who blocked the entrance to the country's only international aviation gateway. One of Kathmandu's major tourist attractions are these vintage Datsuns and antique Toyopets which charge you an arm and a leg to take you downtown, unless of course you lose some more limbs along the way.

The Ass has uncovered the real reason: the government wants to scrap the taxis, but the owners want to buy non-Indian brand taxis above 1,000 cc for the same duty waiver as Indian-made Marutis get. So the fight is between powerful lobbies of Japanese and Korean cars against the even more powerful importers of Indian cars.

If this is what they do over cars, imagine what will happen when the dogfight between Airbus and Boeing really starts over Nepal Airline's fleet expansion plans: pilots parking their planes haphazardly all over the runway to shut the airport down? Anything is possible in the New Nepal.


Among the people who were stuck at the airport last Friday were various arriving and departing Kathmandu-based dips, peacekeepers, warmongers and our very own Matrika Yadav. The Ass has given the Deforestation Minister a lot of grief in the past months over his affinity for logging, but the man deserves a medal for refusing to fly business class to and from Bangkok on his health checkup. Comrades Blooming Lotus and Red Flag had no such qualms on their recent jaunts to Switzerland and Norway, nor Comrade Ananta to Hong Kong. Wonder, though, if Matrikababu was put off by the fact that Thai calls the front of its plane \'Royal Orchid\'. Being the champions of national capitalists, maybe the entire politburo should now stop driving around in stolen Boleros and switch to Made in Biratnagar Hulas Sherpa SUVs (also known as 'Nepali Humvees').


The other folks complaining about having to use Tata Pickups instead of Toyota Landcrusiers are UN arms monitors. On one particularly hot afternoon somewhere in the southwestern sector recently, UNMIN staff actually took their eyes off the CCTV cameras to emerge from their air-conditioned trailers to admire a convoy of Japanese automatic suspension 4WDs belonging to INGOs.


It's business-as-usual in the four-star party. Looks like efforts to unite the party by BP Day on the 21st is coming to nought mainly because GP can't forgive The Sher for doublecrossing him, and joining Gyancha in 2002.

Over at Balkhu HQ Makunay survived his party's CentCom meeting despite Jhallu's spirited effort to dislodge him. Guess what they were arguing about: Makunay had analysed that Nepal's polity was divided into four groups: royalists, capitalists, lefties, and ultras. Jhallu's take was there are only three groups and that the Maoists are also socialists. Comrade \'Leftist God\' Bam Deb disagreed with both and postulated that Nepalis are either republicans or monarchists. Given the number of puret bajes in the UML politburo it's not surprising they're splitting hairs.

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)