'...To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West--know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy.' From Barack Obama's inauguration speech. Hope our PM takes note.
I was shocked to read of the brutal murder of the fearless young journalist Uma Singh ("Flames of truth', #434). She has earned my awe and admiration at many levels. As a former journalist I am struck by her courage, passion against injustices, and her exemplary commitment and dedication to freedom of the media. She died because she practiced the highest values of journalism. As a woman I honour her for supreme courage in confronting the people who killed her father and brother. I admire her for continuing a crusade against impunity and injustice. She died serving the fundamental values of democracy: rule of law, and freedom of thought. There should be a Uma Singh Memorial Fund to honour those who follow in Uma's footsteps. This will be the best way to remember Uma Singh and her fight for freedom of expression.
Thanks to Kanak Mani Dixit for a strong and insightful field reportage from Janakpur on the murder of Uma Singh. Uma did not die in vain, she went lighting the flame of truth for all of us to carry.
I support CK Lal's views on the army ('It is Nepal's army,' #433) but I personally don't think this army is Nepal's army. If it were why was it fighting for the king when the people were struggling for democracy? If you say they were only obeying orders as they should then why are they not obeying orders now as they did then? Unlike one king in the past the orders being given now come from one-third of the seats in the assembly and 30 per cent of Nepali population. To be truly Nepali, the army should be above any influence and follow what the elected government says no matter what.
I write this because I am very uncomfortable when I read the news coming out of Nepal. Power cuts have extended to 16 hours. This is the most treacherous thing to happen to a country. But that is not where our problems end, we have had dire shortage of clean drinking water for the past two decades. As a citizen I attribute this to mismanagement and bad administration. What are all our politicians doing? We are in the brink, and yet the leaders have the audacity to talk about a new Nepal. Nepalis died so that their lives would be better. It looks like the leaders fought for nothing but to get to power. They throw words at us every day, but where is the action?