July 20, 2024, Saturday
Nepal 1:37:26 pm

Still Nepal is confined to the Kathmandu valley

The Nepal Weekly
October 3, 2023

Dr. Prem Sharma

Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, formerly greatly known as Nepal and sometimes Kantipur city has become really the Nepal. Now it (the city) is a mosaic of every Nepali as well as foreign culture. Though politically and administratively divided into three districts, Kathmandu valley presents a prosperous and advanced Nepal. If one goes through the kaleidoscope, people of all 77 districts or 7 hundred 53 municipalities are found wondering here. Is it a courtyard or arena of mass corruption, sans rule of law or impunity, systematic smuggling destination of all? Ironically, everyone is safe under the reign of present leadership as if prosperity and happy citizen!

Once my grandfather used to say he had been from Nepal and had to go to Nepal for different purposes. It means then there was only one Nepal, i.e. Kathmandu valley and now there is the Nepal and it is solely Kathmandu valley. Beyond that there is no feeling of the presence of 7 provinces, and 7 hundred 53 Palikas. The larger and internationally recognized or known Nepal once unified by founding father King Prithvi Narayan Shah (1769) it has shrunk into Kathmandu valley, though we are much talking about federal republic Nepal. Whether it is the boon of science and technology, bad governance or good governance or due to decade long Maoist insurgency or…? Now Kathmandu has become the palace of all Nepali nobles and burrow of all evils, even foreigners. The writer regards it as one of the contributions of multiparty dispensations; you can take it otherwise- the impact or result of weak governance, problem across the nation belatedly democratic federal republic Nepal. What is the fact and reason behind it is a matter of quest for a social scientist. Are we anticipating a social movement? Lets hope at 2027 AD!  However, the Kingdom of Nepal has been cleavaged into the capital and the rest as urban and rural. This logic can be ultravired to someone if s/he accounts other big cities such as Biratnagar, Pokhara and few district headquarters of the Kingdom.

Even with the presence of own elected government, security forces and local administration at the district headquarters, a literal citizen feels lack of governance around him. Even, sans the presence of any insurgency and their activities in most lands of the Kingdom, there is a feeling of insecurity and devoid of government as if under a remote control system of corruption insurgency prevails there. The void of effective central government, and local government had created chaos and anarchism of armed conflict outside the Kathmandu valley. The presence of once a blue moon of insurgency used to intimidate the locals for more than a year. There is a saying- hatti ayo hatti ayo phussa (elephant! elephant! but really no elephant), except uproot of monarchy. What went blunder during the past can be attributed to minor mistakes. The new governments, political parties and civil societies are responsible on preferential respects. The so-called popular representative governments of multiparty system have tamed all its lawmakers, sycophancies and political cadres in the valley. Once they are elected or selected from proportionate remain in the capital and become tourist to their respective constituency. Their voters feel betrayed as one silver jubilee medal winner (Balaram GM) of Panchayat System from Rolpa district. Whenever the hung parliament is there, no function takeplace voters are not asked to retest their sovereignty rather gathbandan governments are formed within coalition label/brand with 360 degrees i.e. all possible forms of coalitions devoid of principles and ideology. The government of today is the same. Intrigues and counter intrigues within own political parties and among (intra and inter) the political parties have been developed as federal political culture. All decisions and policies are prepare from Kathmandu-Nepal without a vision of their implications or on the recommendation of their party cadres, specially, sycophancies who are gathered at Kathmandu–Nepal as nobles of government. Migrants, displacements, traffickers of all sorts, unemployed, residue students, bankers, moneylenders, sycophancies, politicians and nobles of all sorts have settled down in Kathmandu-Nepal.

Lokdohori, Rhondi, Dewda, Dhannach, Tharunach, Tarahanne/archery, Lotchhars, etc. are now performed at Tundikhel and restaurants/bars of Kathmandu. A couple of decades ago these cultures were unfamiliar to Kathmanduties. District gatherings or samparkmanch (contact forums) of almost 72 districts are being held, speeches and local plans and programs are designed in such gatherings by their respective political leaders who visits the village once in a blue moon for rendering services and welfare of the districts. Peris danda, Chyasal, Sanepa, Naxal and Baluwatar monitors, guides and helps to make success of those functions and ceremonies. Even a field researcher needs not to visit Palikas and conducts interviews at the spot; it can be done from Kathmandu by an auto-random system, i.e., in the will of partisan. Office pads, seals and necessary documents (micro pocket office), perhaps, can be obtained from Kathmandu. This is the uniqueness of Nepal, Kathmandu! The rest Nepal i.e. beyond Kathmandu valley is swinging without a thread, Pashupatinath le rakshagarun! The local bureaucrats wait their monthly salary while rains pour or sun shines. They had to wait a shift and spend time- days or months at the district headquarters but now at the Palika. A good practice, today almost all the local public hospitals are sans medical doctors outside Kathmandu. They have nothing to be delivered as goods and services to the public. Everything is revolving in its own axis. Do not talk about the federal offices and remote Municipalities, they are self-regulating even sans designed officers, the local offices are run by the junior bureaucrats oe office assistants; NGOs and civil societies are functioning within the pockets of shrewd nobles. The Kathmandu-Nepal based media, civil societies and sycophancies have run the state in a vacuum, stateless notion. It was what one might call ‘regression’ and mandale; now pakhandi, foreign hands- Bideshi prabhu and abanchit tatwo? To whom to attribute? We changed, we mandated and empowered our rulers.

Thus, Kathmandu valley represents Nepal. She possesses all sorts of facilities to render goods and services to these elite Nepalis who were/are able to come and sit close by the palace of wrong doers. Development partners are happy to invest, conduct and perform awareness and development programs at their own courts such as at Pulchowk or star hotels. Dalits, bonded labors, Janajatis, Kusundas, Raute, Chepangs, Haliyas, Maobadi pidits, refugees, etc. are immediately available at the door steps of the donors, capital based I/NGOs and government and its development wings- ministries, departments, commissions, committees and parastatal organizations. My mind mostly wonders whether it is a privilege and opportunities to those i.e. government, donors, insurgent displaced people and political parties to have a boon to be in Kathmandu-Nepal which is relatively safe and prosperous under the rule of gathbanda compared to the rest. Those institutions have opportunities to serve their target groups locally in the capital, Bhaisepati- contact offices of Provincial chieves. This is what my parents and grandparents used to say ‘Nepal’ means Kathmandu, the capital of our unified Nepal breadth to length- Mechi-Mahakali and Terai to Himal but now we are under the federal republic Nepal.