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What CPN-UML Really Wants?

Issue December 2016

What CPN-UML Really Wants?

Siddhi B Ranjitkar


Obviously the CPN-UML has forgotten what is right thing to do what is wrong otherwise it would not obstruct the parliamentary proceedings for almost 20 days demanding the withdrawal of the proposal for amending the constitution the government has introduced in the parliament, and it would not incite the people in the mid west to shut down the area again protesting against the amendment. CPN-UML leaders need to coolly think about how to play a political game by rule or by a violent force if they want to prove that they are matured politicians and they could think rationally than emotionally.


CPN-UML leaders have been using the aggressive force unnecessarily than the rule of law to fight against the political change or the amendment to the Constitution what they don’t want since the government introduced the proposal for the amendment to the Constitution about 20 days ago. Everybody knows what the CPN-UML leaders have been using the violence as of in the past when they needed to use it when they did not have the rights to fight the legal battles when they have only the means of using only the brutal force in other words street protests or taking up the arms to force the establishment to correct or surrender or even to displace.


Currently, everybody having a little knowledge of the State affairs understands that the CPN-UML leaders need not obstruct either the parliament going against the Constitution or to incite the people to come out on the streets or shut down the businesses of the common folks at the high cost to the individuals and to the nation too, as they have the constitutional rights and legal means to fight against the establishment.


First, the CPN-UML leaders have every right to oppose the amendment bill in the parliament, and even the rights to make it a failure if they could. They would be wise enough to follow the constitutional provision and follow the parliamentary procedures rather than bullying the parliament, which is not only unconstitutional but also against the regular political business in the democratic republic.


Second, if they are not for the amendment to the Constitution and if they could not make it a failure in the parliament through the regular parliamentary process they need to prepare for going to the people, and present their justification for reversing the amendment to the Constitution, and get the two-thirds majority in the parliament. Then, they could amend the Constitution, as they like and as it suits them. That is easier said than done. So, they indulge in the easiest thing to do to obstruct the parliament and to bring the cadres to the streets to protest.


Third, the CPN-UML leaders have been shutting down the mid western region for almost 20 days. If they are the democratic minded leaders, and if they have a little knowledge of human rights violence they would not do so, as shutting down others’ business is the grave violence of human rights.


Fourth, the CPN-UML leaders have been acting on emotion rather than on following the constitution and the rule of law, as they have been mad at losing the State power. They just want to intimidate the majority of parliamentarians with the strength of less than 200 parliamentarians in the 601-member parliament. That would not put them back to power. That is for sure; CPN-UML leaders need to understand it.


Fifth, if the CPN-UML leaders really want to be a strong opposition force then they not only need to follow the Constitution and the parliamentary proceedings rather than obstructing but also need to force the establishment to follow so that the country would have a rule of law rather than the rule of mob the CPN-UML have been following.


What really the CPN-UML leaders want blocking the parliamentary proceedings and bringing the political cadres on the streets, and shutting down the business of the common folks in the mid west is not more than to derail the federalism. They need to know that in doing so they could not get back the lost power to the opposition in the past but they could hurt the federalism. Then what they have been doing is really nothing more than trying to make the federalism a failure.


Recently, CPN-UML leaders have openly come out against the federalism. They proposed to hold the elections to the federal parliament, which is not possible without holding the elections to the local units, and then to provinces without violating the Constitutional provisions. This has been done with the clear intention of going against the federalism.


The so-called CPN-UML leaders such as Jhalanath Khanal, KP Oli, and Bamdev Gautam not to mention the second level leaders have been publicly saying that the federalism has caused the political chaos, and federalism is not necessary for such a small country like Nepal. Saying so, they have brought themselves down to the level of one-man-show leaders such as Chitra Bahadur KC and CP Mainali that have been advocating against the federalism not knowing the consequences of making the federalism a failure.


Today are not the time of Prithvi Narayan Shah and the 240-year rule of his descendants that the rulers could keep the Nepalese united at a gunpoint. Unity in diversity is the current reality. Without uniting the diverse Nepalese into a single nation, Nepal could not keep its size and shape anymore.


It is not known who has given the CPN-UML leaders such courage to challenge the federalism more than 90 percent of the Constituent Assembly members have accepted and passed. They just want to reverse it with their strength of less than 200 parliamentarians through blocking the parliamentary proceedings.


If we go back to the formation of the cabinet Chairman of CPN-UML KP Oli has formed in the past, his three deputies such as Chitra Bahadur KC, CP Mainali, and Kamal Thapa out of the six deputies he had in his cabinet were anti-federalists. These guys have practically only insignificant followers to say their views reflect the people’s aspirations. Their views are their own individual ones. In the republican democracy anybody can go with his/her own views, and express publicly; it is not a problem.


KP Oli and his anti-federalism associates have developed the tendency of reversing the federal system by any possible means. They want to go head-on collision with the ethnic people and Madheshi people that have been demanding to address their concerns in the Constitution. They want to harass them. From where KP Oli and his associates have derived the courage and strength that are equal to that of Prithvi Narayan of 240 years ago to repress the common folks not known, yet. Federalism is to transfer the sovereignty to the grassroots level people, and let them set their own destiny whereas the CPN-UML guys want to set the destiny of the entire people.


Clearly, these guys that dream of reviving Prithvi Narayan for following the unitary system of governance in the diverse Nepal, have not thought of the need for facing the guillotine if they really attempt on doing so. Prithvi Narayan had been dead for 240 years and his descendents’ unjust rule has been dead, too. The sovereignty of the State has been transfer to the people that would not turn it back to any dictator. The CPN-UML leaders need to understand it.


Some leaders particularly of the CPN-UML that has been a second largest party in the parliament thanks to the people’s votes have been hoping to overturn the federalism celebrating the birth anniversary of Prithvi Narayan Shah in the name of unity day. For example, former Chairman of CPN-UML Jhalanath Khanal had lead a procession from the office of Nepal Academy at Kamaladi to the statue of Prithvi Narayan at the traffic isle near the entrance to the Singh durbar State secretariat on the birth anniversary in 2015.


Obviously, Jhalanath Khanal did not know that the stone statue of Prithvi Narayan has been working as a traffic controller not as a unity figure. Rather for most of the Nepalese, Prithvi has been the symbol of the poverty and destitute their forefathers had undergone, and their current poverty is a hangover from the past repressive and despotic deeds of Prithvi and his descendants. Probably, Mr. Khanal anticipates running the similar repressive rule in the name of Prithvi as a unity figure. If Mr. Khanal is not politically so naïve even though he has spent his whole life on the politics then he would never think of such unrealistic thing in the current context.


KP Oli is another political figure that sets his target as of Prithvi ignoring the current political situation. Probably, Oli thinks that Nepalese folks are as naïve as he is so that he could bring back Prithvi to life, and Oli could be another Prithvi in the current democratic republic. However, it would be a great achievement for him if he could come back as a prime minister again, as his current activities have been anti-people, anti-Constitution, and anti-rule of law, and anti-human rights. His party might need to work very hard even to maintain the current status in the next general elections.


Nobody needs to lecture Oli that the rule of law is the spine of democratic republic. However, Oli has been bending the spine of the democratic republic ordering his lawmakers to obstruct the regular parliamentary proceedings, and order his cadres to shut down the businesses of the common folks in the mid west denying the fundamental rights of the people to work and earn livelihood. Obviously, Oli has not thought of voters possibly breaking up the spine of his party in the future elections.


If Oli and his colleagues such as Jhalanath Khanal and Bamdev Gautam are to demonstrate their political maturity then they would surely let run the parliament smoothly otherwise they must have been dreaming to capture the State power through the street mob that would never happen again. Such things work when people have no alternative to express their grievances, and only alternatives had been to protest or take up arms. Today, they have the Constitutional and legal rights to fight against anything they want to.


Currently, Oli and his colleagues have so many alternatives such as the parliament, the judiciary, the media, and surely the general elections. The best way for Oli and his colleagues might be to use the current media for turning the general elections in their favor. If they want to stop the amendment to the Constitution they would be better off to use the parliamentary strength rather than bullying the parliamentary proceedings unconstitutionally or they could go to the Supreme Court asking for stopping the amendment.


They are not for using any one of the legal options. What they want is to impose their belief on the people with the aggressive force. From where, they derive such unconstitutional power to bully the democratic process. They need to understand that the strength of the political power lies in convincing the people of the political party working for the people following the rule of law. Will any political party survive taking the country in reverse? The answer is quite clear: it is not possible.


Going against the federalism and obstructing the parliamentary proceedings unconstitutionally they have been certainly going against the people’s aspirations for institutionalizing the federal democratic republic.


Nobody could take the country back to the unitary system in the diverse society as of Nepal without risking to the heavy bloodsheds and the disintegration of the country. Only unity in diversity could save the country from chaos and even from disintegration in the worst case of the political scenario no matter how many times they chant the name of Prithvi. So, Oli and Khanal could forget about reviving Prithvi Narayan Shah for imposing a unitary system in the country if they really want to survive as politicians. None of the politicians going against the federalism could escape from retribution.


December 20, 2016

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