Nepali Times
From The Nepali Press
Murders most foul

Armed Maoists murdered Krishna Mohan Shrestha, head of the Armed Police Force, his wife Nudup Shrestha who was a teacher at Lincoln School and their security guard Surya Regmi. The murders were executed in an extremely cowardly manner. The Maoists may feel they have taken a great leap towards their revolutionary goals, but this is a major mistake. In reality, the results of the murders will be unfortunate for both the nation and the Maoists themselves. Also, if the government, political parties and pro-democracy powers do not realise the threat these murders pose and continue to close their eyes to reality, then the consequences will be dangerous.

The murders have now made it easier for the international community to list the Maoists as a terrorist organisation. It has also increased the possibility of Nepal becoming a market for foreign arms. While the country has been compelled to divert development funds towards security concerns, the murders have proved that the Maoist leadership, despite their professed interest in peace, have once again violated that trust. The bullets that killed the Shresthas and their bodyguard has silenced the demands to lift the terrorist labelfrom the Maoists.

Do the Maoists want to bring foreign powers into the country and end the very existence of the nation? Its future looks uncertain, and those in power are uncertain about how to react to these assassinations. The increasing differences between the king and parties, who like to call themselves democratic, have encouraged the Maoists. The division among the pro-democratic parties and their weaknesses will further enable the Maoists to forge ahead with their principle of divide and destroy. Attempts to restore peace will remain nothing but a slogan. The king and democratic powers need to immediately patch their differences. If the murder of the Shresthas can bring the two together, there is a possibility that this tragedy will have at least one small positive outcome.

The murders of Nudup Shrestha and her husband are not symbols of a successful revolution. They are murders plain and simple. This is a burning example of violence dominating the intellect. What else can be made of incidents when the gun is trained against children, students and teachers?

It would be an error for the government to retaliate in kind, to be like the Maoists whose intellect has been undermined by violence. It is the responsibility of the state to solve the nation's overall situation in a suitable manner. Again, unless the king and political parties ensure a government with maximum participation, the uncertainty and anarchy plaguing the country will continue. That is the moral of the story.

(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)