Leaving BBC to enter politics
Many of my readers and well-wishers know very well how strongly I have continued to argue, along with numerous like-minded friends, that transforming Nepal within our lifetime is impossible without first laying the foundation for cultured politics. Such a foundation, we have argued, should be based upon four pillars: System, Transparency, Integrity and Meritocracy (or STEM, in short) and should be within the ambit of constitutional and inclusive democracy.
It is our conviction that Nepalis living inside and outside of Nepal who are frustrated by the decades of selfish, extractive, pretentious and non-transparent politics but believe that Nepal could still be rescued, will support us if we can lay a strong foundation of cultured politics. Our goal is to create a common platform to bring together honest and capable Nepalis from all walks of life for the sake of clean politics to transform Nepal. By bringing a massive number of like-minded Nepalis together, we believe that we will not merely be creating just another political party that will come into existence but can never lead the country towards prosperity. Instead, it will be the rise of a leadership that takes the country firmly towards the path of total transformation.
A group of committed people had for long been involved in ideological and strategic deliberations in this regard. This group has now gained the confidence to translate their work into action. Therefore, I have resigned from the position of the Head of the BBC Nepali Service to take up the mantle of this effort. I will continue to remember the trust, love and support I have been showered with by ordinary Nepalis in course of my association with the BBC, my writings and my involvement in philanthropic activities. I cannot thank them enough and will also be, forever, grateful to both my co-workers, and the organisation.
That very trust, love and support and the inspiration and motivation by my friends involved in the political homework have given me the energy to embark upon this new journey. Some of my well-wishers had advised me to join existing political parties rather than setting up a new one. I have reached the conclusion that doing so will only change me but not the country. Therefore, I have chosen this alternative and challenging path.
Very soon, we will come to you with the organizational structure and other relevant information about the new party, which will embrace Welfare Democracy and Liberal Welfare Economy as its ideologies. We want to make an ardent appeal to those who are not politically affiliated, to those who are politically affiliated but believe that the country cannot progress with the existing group of parties, and to those working for the positive transformation of the society by being affiliated to different social organizations to come forward and utilize our platform for the peaceful, graceful, patriotic and development-focused political uprising.
We are not ignorant about similar efforts, their weaknesses and failures in the past. Rather than getting frightened, we have learnt lessons from such endeavours. Besides, as most of us do not have any political background, we have not a shred of doubt that our journey will be even more challenging. But history is testimony that no country has undergone an overall change without an honest, far-sighted, strong and nationwide intervention by a group of committed people. We are ready – let us now appeal to you to be ready across villages, cities and even overseas. To start with, we urge you to be ready to form an at least 7-member group in each and every one of Nepal’s localities, which willbe the foundation of the party’s organizational structure.We will be making special arrangement for Nepalis living overseas to join in this collaborative journey and also urge them to start forming ‘goodwill group’ in all town and cities around the world.
Even the countries that found themselves in much more challenging situations than us have been able to attain political stability and catch up with development and prosperity within 10 to 20 years. There is no reason why we should not be able to do the same. Make no mistake – our attempt is not aimed at simply winning 10/12 seats in the parliament and indulge in politics. We want to lead the entire country towards total transformation and change the very character of our politics. We do not have the luxury of failing or doing okay. We are certain that we will be blessed with your well-wishes and support in this journey. We will, of course, be with you always.
It is our determination that no matter what, we will fulfil our dream of witnessing the prosperity and development of this country, which despite being extraordinarily rich in resources has been forced to languish in poverty and political instability for far too long. So that our posterity will not be compelled to abandon their elderly parents and go overseas in search of a better life, instead, they will be able to generate jobs for themselves and even the foreigners.
From the press release issued by Rabindra Mishra
Challenges for reconstruction
One of the major challenges faced in the reconstruction process of Nepal is the absence of elected local government. Lack of government in local level was reflected in the major pre-disaster and post-disaster events, where it took months to reach the affected region and still no widely-accepted data is available. In the absence of an elected local government, top-down approach of governance has its own accountability deficit.
Apil KC/Keshab Sharma
Making sense of Adityanath's rise in Modi's India
The most notorious incitement of communal hatred by Adityanath was his exhortation to 'kill ten woh log ['them' meaning Muslims]' rather than knocking the doors of legal system 'if one Hindu is killed' in riots.
Kathmandu means so much to me, and it looks like for people who promise to be the agent of change for the better, their own names mean a lot. A lot more than Kathmandu it seems.
Identity and nationhood
Whoever says nationhood is not important would be lying. For example, belonging to a particular nation may give certain advantages to a person that one belonging to another nation would not get.
Traffic Police in Kathmandu
As busy and hassling as the traffic system in Kathmandu is, the Traffic Police here have to handle an equally strenuous job. Over 1,400 traffic officers in and around the Kathmandu Valley battle against the pestering traffic and air pollution each day.
Menstrual taboo outdated
I have seen my sisters and friends isolated and treated in discriminatory manner during their first menstruation cycle. They were not allowed to look at the sun, to touch water source, flower, fruits, any male family member, nor even hear their voice. The activist may claim the situation has changed and I do agree but still during every month my loved ones turns into untouchables beings.