Nepali Times
From The Nepali Press
Pragmatism vs righteousness, Kantipur, NEW!

Kantipur: Are we maintaining an equidistance between China and India?
Lok Raj Baral:
No,I don't think that is the case. We have a friendly diplomatic relationship with China. But our ties with India run deeper and politically, socially, geographically and culturally we are
much closer to India.Therefore, our leaders must take these into account before making any statement.

Do you see the recent treaty with India as an indication of PM Bhattarai's 'pro-India' leaning?
Every Prime Minister in Nepal has been charged as being 'pro-India'. But in reality, BIPPA is just a treaty to assure foreign investment. We have done it with India, if possible we should have a similar treaty with China as well.

Does that mean that Nepal should become a commercial transit between China and India?
It is not a bad idea. Earlier, due to India's paranoia over its security we could not build Kodari highway. But things have changed now and growing trade between China and India has provided an opportunity for Nepal to cash in on its geo-political location. There is no point playing one against the other when we can get benefit out of both.

But can Nepal come out of 'big brother's' shadow to assert its pragmatic foreign policy?
Let us not keep blaming others for our own weakness. Nepali leaders must get over this cold war hangover and stop worrying about upsetting China or India. Yes, open interference by Indian diplomats in Nepali politics must be condemned. But in the present context, I feel India has come to terms with the fact that it cannot isolate the biggest political group in Nepali politics if it wants a healthy relationship with Nepal. Similarly, even the Maoists seem to have realised that good relationship with India is in their interest.

What about the difficult position Nepal finds itself in regarding the Tibetan refugees?
We are not a powerful nation. US can afford to defy the Chinese and meet the Dalai Lama. We have other things to worry about. Having a righteous stand is fine, but first we need to be stromg enough to take a stand and say we are doing the right thing.

1. Vija Srestha

In general ,every government  simply must have good relationship with neighbours and in this case BIPPA and Lumbini project is just a way to movement.Is it for development and in interests of nepali people and Nepal as a country,is a question this signed agreements have not been able to convince,right the opposite,these projects and agreements are not in the interests of Nepal , knowing the that country has billions in deficite,knowing that Nepali politicians and the society live according to the principle,one hand washes the other,knowing that till now no one of Nepali political leaders have stood against the corruption,no one.In fact the opposite,the impression is ,nepali politicinas just simply accepted the game of corruption. A country that doesn't have its own strong economical basis ,not even in one field,the country that has to rely on the investment from outside,has always been and will always be in debt and will always be dependent ,but what is more important ,in the end it will be weakend by its depedency.Lok Raj Baral in principal is taking a wrong approach in his statement.Mentioning that Nepal has more common with in India than China is wrong.This has always been wrong putting both neighbours in different shelves.What is also upsetting that no one wants to see where the inability to have its own point of view,Nepal and Nepalis have chosen themselves a role of a slave .One doesn't have to take sides,just because one is smaller in size or because one has borrowed money or for any other reason,as long as one is controlling ones own actions and corruption in all fields .I totally disagree with Mr.Lok Raj Baral statement We are not a powerful nation. US can afford to defy the Chinese and meet the Dalai Lama. Nepal is an equal member with other countries in UN and therefore saying we have no say,is tottally wrong.One needs to thing of principles of coexistence on respectful rights and duties like any other neighbour and saying Nepal is not powerful nation ,is totally wrong.One needs to have an opinion of its own,not because of what neightbours will think.This kind of thinking from Mr.L.R.Baral is unecceptable.He personali needs to think about his statements in the press,he is serving two masters at once in his own statements,it is like having no opinion of his own.Diplomatic?It is no diplomatic,it is the same old corrupt behaviour,or the same old slavery ,corrupt persons behaviour,nothing new.When it is gone end?

'We have other things to worry about.'What are the other things to worry about?The shortest way to solving any problem is being honest,open minded,always.Righteous and honest towards oneself first,that's what neighbouring countries have been living through,towards themselves first ,why Nepal and its politicinas see it differently?Yes,there is a way ,we must find a compromise,but even finding a compromise one must not deny or have no opinion,one must not behold a pleasing attitude just because someones pocket or purse is bigger.This is what is principaly wrong Mr.Baral. Life and rights of millions is denied ,just because you have no opinion ,.do you know what is moraly right for every human being or just because you live in Nepal and are not tibetian ,or because you are scared to be honest,people of Nepal who are buddhists are denied their rights and love to Dalai Lama.They are Nepalis too,maybe less in numbers,so this is something you people like Baral till now haven't understood.Yes,it makes me angry,knowing that you use your authority and respectful age to use your misguided understanding to guide other less educated nepalis and that is what is sad about Nepal and leaders and people like you,that your opinion is still alive.You are a person with slavery opinion,it is worse than having opinion.This is what is wrong with you Mr.Baral.Because of your inability ,if you represent Nepal in UN people like tibetians are not allowed to have their rights or ,just becasue you do not want to upset China or India,sorry.'having a righteous stand is fine, but first we need to be stromg enough to take a stand and say we are doing the right thing.'

Where is your strength Mr.Baral.You don't have even a strength to say the righteous things,you first need to organize your own priorities straight,and only then you will be able to do the right things,but your answers in this article show ,that you don't know what is right and simply wrong.

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)