Does it say something about us that we are always so obsessed here in Nepal with strongman rule. You'd have thought that after 350 years of the Shahs, 100 years of the Ranas, 20 years of the Koiralas and 2 years of Lotus Flower that we'd have enough of maharajas. In the roaring nineties, while netas were boasting that they'd turn Nepal into 'another Singapore' or 'another Switzerland', it became fashionable to say that Nepal really needed a Lee Kuan Yew or a Mahathir, but poor us, we were stuck with Gyan Bahadur.
Things must have really got much worse because now there seems to be a feeling that even a benevolent dictator will not be able to turn things around in Nepal anymore, we need a mad, malevolent one. Someone who can crack the whip, make trains run on time, or do public amputations of members of the public who urinate on street corners. Which must be why His Honour the Prime Minister doesn't have on his wall the portrait of Lord Buddha or Grandfather of the Nation Prithvi Narayan Shah, but of Soviet Alpha Male Comrade Joseph the Stalin.
Uncle Joe is so popular among the Baddie brass that PKD and BRB have even started looking like him, combing the hair back with gel and sporting thick Georgian moustaches. But we need someone with an even more fearsome reputation than Stalin, which must be why swastikas are popping up all over Nepal. One INGO that runs a network of community libraries all over the country even has a wall motto that it ascribes to Sir Adolf Hitler. Wait, I thought he called it Fatherland?
Talk of the town last week was whether visiting strongman King Karan was preparing to install another strong man here. There was a déjà vu moment when everyone was reminded of 23 April 2006 when the Maharaja of Kashmir met the Sri Punch Maharaja of Kathmandu in a last-ditch, ill-fated attempt to save the monarchy. But who says the country is going to the dogs because our Nattering Netas of Negativity don't get along? They all got invited to the bash in Bijaybas in honour of His Royal Highness last weekend. The Good, the Bad, and the Agni were all there, toasting to each others' wealth while Animal Sam Sher doubled as barman. Observing all the back-slapping bonhomie at Maharaj Ganj, the visiting dignitary must have thought, hey no problem in Nepal yar, they all get along like a house on fire.
The survey result last week that placed Nepalis as one of the least emotional people in the world outraged a lot of us Nips who yowled and snivelled with disbelief. The Cranticurries want to bring out a julus in an emotional protest and burn a hardcopy printout of the report. How can we be classified as unemotional when our comrade leaders weep in public at the drop of a hat? But the survey was reportedly based on the lack of emotional outbursts in Nepal over 16 hour daily power cuts, and total absence of rage over having to wait for 4 hours for 5 litres of gasoline. Any other country would have ratcheted up 230 revolutions per minute by now.
While still on his extended honeymoon in Chandigarh, self-exiled Dear Leader Prakash has admitted in a FB interview that he should have divorced his second wife and married the third before eloping with her. "I have made a grave error in judgement," he admitted before going on to promise to elope legally next time round. Meanwhile, it looks like another royal scion in self-imposed exile in Siam is soon going to run out of countries giving him asylum at the rate he keeps getting arrested for possessing dope. The Clown Plince is in custody for trashing a hotel in Bangkok and a villa in Phuket. Maybe he should just give up Phuket and come back to Surkhet.
Poor Makuney, got gheraoed by emotional Nepali villagers in Parsa this week who were ticked off by the Mao-Mad coalition government not delivering on services and infrastructure. They didn't care that MKN is now in the opposition or that he actually contested and lost his parliamentary seat from neighbouring Rautahat. Just as the locals were trying to figure out whether they should slap another eh-maley leader, or just chuck him into the Auriya River over which they had been demanding a bridge for quite sometime, the Balm Neta was rescued by Birganj's Finest. But they still managed to chase his SUV out of the village and out of sight.