Finally the rubber stamp constituent assembly had declared the country a democratic republic but the political parties are implementing the republic in instalment and rather than working in favour of people the political parties are again involving into blame-game.
Nepali people, who had overwhelmingly participated in April uprising of 2006 in favour of democracy, became pessimist after the political parties showed shameless behaviour during the first meeting of the constituent assembly. The jumbo constituent assembly, which seemed a crowed of unprofessional people did the work that had bent the head of independent Nepalis. The first meeting of the constituent assembly, that started nearly twelve hours after the stipulated time, just put the stamp on the decision made by three major political parties of the parliament. Though, Nepali people are in favour of democratic republic set up of the country and participated in the April uprising, but the method the political parties and the constituent assembly had adopted was against the sprit of the people's mandate. People are in favour of making the constituent assembly, an independent and powerful body, as they had elected their representatives and they also wanted to have sufficient discussions in every major issues. The political parties, however again repeated the old character of making decisions in a closed room and put a stamp at the parliament and this time at the constituent assembly. As per the international practise major issues could be decided through referendum and the constituent assembly incorporates these issues in the constitution as per the verdict of the referendum, but Nepali constituent assembly just put stamp at the decision made by the earlier parliament even without having sufficient discussion. If people do not feel ownership in the new constitution made by constituent assembly, it would put the country into risk but the Nepali leaders seemed indifferent towards this risk. Hrideyesh Tripathi, a leader of Teral Madhesh Democratic Party, a party which has considerable representation in the CA pointed out major weakness in a proposal tabled by the Home Minister on behalf of Prime Minister, but the house did not bothered to correct the mistake. Similarly, speaking at the first meeting of the CA Chandra Bahadur Gurung of RPP Nepal said “Though we are aware of the culture of functioning like a robot through remote-control, we have decided to register our note of dissent for the record for the posterity,” the statement reflects how the CA is becoming rubber stamp and the major political parties reducing the value of CA. Gurung could not complete reading his party’s statement as the assembly chair barred him from speaking after the allotted two minutes. If the CA has the mandate of just putting the stamp into the decisions made by some major political parties, why there was a need of a jumbo CA of 601 members, for which Nepali people have to bear extra financial burden.
The negligence of major political parties could be seen in the first seating after the house, which did not have 26 members took the major decision of making the country a republic one, but the decision is being implemented in instalment basis. First the CA declared the country as a republic one and made the former King Gyanendra as an ordinary citizen but gradually political parties are giving more privileges to the deposed King and recognizing the status of King. The parties agreed to give Nagarjune palace and Mahendra Manjil to former King but could not set the deadline for leaving these new palaces, which raised suspicion that whether the political parties, which had the habit of making strange decisions, are trying to make another history by implementing a republic with monarchy in the country.
The parliament, that started nearly in midnight not only stunned Nepalese but also all the well wishers of Nepal. The government had earlier called the diplomats to come to 11 am in the morning for the first meeting of the constituent assembly, as the political parties failed to make consensus on some very simple issues and notified the diplomats to come at 3 pm in the afternoon but the parties could only sit for the first meeting at around nine in the evening. Not only the fist meeting, the CA became defunct for two weeks since its first seating only due to power struggle between three major parties of the CA, i.e. CPN-Maoist, Nepali Congress and CPN-UML. The house should be adjourned twice as the political parties did not make consensus on distribution of key posts of to be formed government. Though the main mandate of the CA is to frame new constitution, but the political parties only engaged on power struggle. The tenure of the CA is just two years but the house is yet to start its business till nearly one month of its formation. Experts say that the real problem in constitution making process starts once the draft is prepared and it goes for clause-wise discussion in the constituent assembly but it is still unclear when the political parties find time for discussion in the constitution after making consensus in power sharing.
Rather than entering into the real business of making constitution, the political parties are engaged into petty issues like who will be the president of New Nepal, who gets what portfolio in new government and nomination of 26 members of the constituent assembly. The visionless political parties of Nepal, has the habit of making decisions in haste and regret later and this time also they are exhibiting the same old character. The vague language used in the Comprehensive Peace Accord about the management of Maoist combatants had resulted into enmity between not only the national army and Maoist combatants but also Maoists and Nepal Army. The political parties are repeating such mistakes this time around as well. Now the knot of the problem remained at who should be the next president. UML as always stood in between Maoists and Nepali Congress, whit the belief that they will get the benefit of doubt, while the Maoists and NC are in extreme opposite pole. After Maoists bid to capture both the top portfolios was rejected from all political parties, they are making various experiments to break the unity of other political parties and appoint hand picked president, who won't be obstacle in their way of implementing autocratic rule. The latest move of Maoists to propose Ram Raja Prasad Singh as a new president is also a ploy of Maoists. Maoists are mainly opposing Girija Prasad Koirala as a new President as Koirala could not move from his stand easily. The way Maoists is treating Koirala in recent days seemed non political character. Had Girija Prasad Koirala had not led the peace process, the peace process could not move upto logical end, so Maoists should respect his contribution.
Whether, Koirala be a new president or not does not keep any meaning for general Nepali people but new Nepal need a president, who is as equally bold of Koirala not to give birth to another dictator in the country. Maoists know that if they became able to sideline Koirala, they could easily impose their dictatorship, but they should keep one thing into mind that ruling a country is not as easy as killing somebody and pouring crocodile tear in return. Maoists should better understand the geo-political situation of the country and rather than selling dreams to the people be flexible to resolve current political impasse of the country. Maoists became only largest party in the parliament that does not mean that they got majority and people had given the mandate to them to lead the constitution making process. Earlier Maoists had publicised Prachanda as the first president of democratic republic Nepal, but when the party failed to receive the top post, he even compromised to accept the second post, which shows power monger nature of the Maoists. As the ball is in Maoist's court Maoists should be flexible enough to give right direction to the country, otherwise they have to face the fate of King Gyanendra, whose ambition had ended the 240-year old institution of monarchy.
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