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Thorny political course versus conceited leaders

Khabarhub

April 4, 2021

7 MIN READ

Thorny political course versus conceited leaders

From L: Prime Minister KP Oli, NC President Sher Bahadur Deuba, Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and UML senior leader Madhav Kumar Nepal.

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The current political course in Nepal has entered a critical juncture with almost all major political players undergoing hard times and losing their prominence.

Despite the excitement exhibited by Maoist Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal “Prachanda” and Madhav Kumar Nepal soon after the Supreme Court verdict of reinstating the House of Representatives, the situation currently has become grimmer for Prachanda and Nepal.

Patience and resilience in Nepali politics are the most valuable assets. In fact, the development after the SC verdict was assumed that it would change the entire political scenario to the benefit of the rivals of Prime Minister KP Oli and put PM Oli on the back foot.

However, this assumption proved wrong, which is clearly evident from the current political developments.

Ironically, almost all the big names in Nepali politics today such as Prachanda, Madhav Kumar Nepal, Dr. Baburam Bhattarai, Upendra Yadav, and the small group of highly-frustrated Nepali Congress leaders such as Ram Chandra Paudel find themselves virtually struggling to survive.

Sadly enough, his aspirations were not fulfilled. The third mistake he made was to let go of the chance to move a vote of no confidence against PM Oli in mid-2020 when all necessary grounds were favorable for him to move in that direction.

On the contrary, PM Oli and leader of the opposition Sher Bahadur Deuba seem to have calculated their priorities carefully and have not fallen for the several options the others are floating.

The current situation has made people aware of the fact that only those with political astuteness or acumen can survive in the current tough circumstances. In the hindsight, one cannot deny the fact that Prachanda made the biggest mistake of unifying with the CPN-UML in 2018 while he had several options.

He had high expectations during the time of unification and he was probably overconfident of establishing himself at the helm of the party – then Nepal Communist Party. He has now realized that dreams and aspirations in Nepali politics are simply a mirage.

His second mistake was not to forcefully pursue what was agreed as part of the gentleman’s agreement for an equal sharing of the post of Chairman and the Prime Minister.

He was probably thinking that by letting PM Oli continue as the PM, he was being generous and would be rewarded.

Sadly enough, his aspirations were not fulfilled. The third mistake he made was to let go of the chance to move a vote of no confidence against PM Oli in mid-2020 when all necessary grounds were favorable for him to move in that direction.

Now that he is in a difficult situation since he endeavors to get rid of the current crisis, he indeed requires the support of other leaders whom he had ignored in the past.

However, other parties and leaders have also realized that by supporting someone who lost everything due to his own failures and shortcomings, they may also find themselves in a difficult position.

As far as Madhav Nepal is concerned, he should have factored the possibility of PM Oli using the second Supreme Court verdict on Rishi Ram Kattel’s case to break the NCP.

Several analysts had anticipated this but the country’s senior politicians seem to have been taken by surprise. Madhav Nepal today finds himself caught between the devil and the deep sea.

Meanwhile, in the Nepali Congress, Ram Chandra Poudel has consistently remained as a back-stage actor since he has failed to muster strength from among NC leaders for the last three years to put up strong opposition to Sher Bahadur Deuba.

The fact that despite several forces acting against Deuba within the party, he managed to remain as an undisputed leader of NC indicates his strong position on the ground. It is, in fact, beyond the perception that if there was indeed so much opposition to Deuba, why did the anti-Deuba camp fail in all these three years to become united and stand against Deuba?

Currently, all leaders who have lost their battle in the past have come together. This also shows that the internal resistance against Deuba is very weak and irrelevant as they need the Maoists and the Janata Samajbadi Party to challenge Deuba.

Comparatively, the desire of Prachanda, Madhav Nepal and Poudel to form a coalition government between the Maoists, JSPN and NC are fraught with too many risks.

It is only because of Prachanda’s support and his fake promises to Poudel that he would be made the President, that he and his gang have woken up thinking that they can overthrow Deuba.

This is again a short-sightedness on the part of the NC leaders who are against Deuba. If they had the confidence they should have fought the battle on their own and not with the support of any other party.

In the current situation, with most of the leaders on a losing trend, strong leaders can be clearly distinguished from the weak.

Both PM Oli and Sher Bahadur Deuba have played their cards well and have kept themselves safe. Moreover, both these leaders believe that at the end of the day, the present mess in national politics can be resolved only through early elections and are keen to move toward that direction.

Comparatively, the desire of Prachanda, Madhav Nepal and Poudel to form a coalition government between the Maoists, JSPN and NC are fraught with too many risks.

A weak Prachanda, a virtually divided JSPN, and bitter differences among the leaders in the NC will never enable easy collaboration between the three.

Even if the coalition is formed, such a government will have difficulties in surviving not more than two to three months since these leaders seem to be using every possible tactic to form the alliance and Poudel has even gone to the extent of assuring Deuba that he can convince the JSPN leaders.

He has also conveyed to Deuba that releasing Resham Chaudhary at this stage will be against the interest of the NC as the party would lose its hold in the far west.

This clearly shows the mean and highly personalized approach of some of the senior leaders.

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