The country’s politics is in a virtual impasse. Despite progress being made in the peace process, the same cannot be said for the task of writing a new constitution. The political parties and their leaders have had more than sufficient time to do so, instead they wasted precious time dilly dallying. Four years should have been sufficient to carry out these tasks, but the leaders of the political parties squandered the time. Had they shown more commitment towards fulfilling the mandate they had been given by the people, we would not have seen this last minute gasps to settle issues such as federating the state, and the forms of governance, among others. They have sat down for serious negotiations to settle these barely a month ago. They have in the meantime been more involved in power play as to who should be leading the government and to put their people in places of power. As a result, the political situation is now critical. The country, meanwhile, is now headed for an uncertain future, and it is for the political leaders to make amends by reaching a settlement with a mere 17 days remaining for the deadline.
There was much harping of reaching a consensus amongst the political parties. Instead, they failed to shed their partisan interests, whereas they should have been accountable to the people first and foremost. In this transient period, much strife was seen and the country was anything but peaceful. More so, because of the culture of impunity, criminal activities thrived and the perpetrators of such activities got away scot free. Similarly corruption scaled new heights with even the Maoist party becoming engaged in embezzlement to the extreme. The law and order situation is dismal, the industrial sector’s performance is disappointing, and budgetary allocation for development activities remain mostly unutilised even by the tenth month of the current fiscal year.
Now, the political parties are slated to go for voting in the parliament to settle the contentious issues. But, with the little time left for the May 27 deadline, the day that the tenure of the Constituent Assembly expires, can the people expect the constitution-drafting task to be completed? Now, nothing short of a miracle will be able to achieve this feat thanks to the lethargy of the political leaders of the major political parties in particular. What more, it is not certain as to how to go about with the voting. Still, the major political parties say they will be negotiating for a settlement of the various disputed issues. Even at this late hour, if they succeed in reaching an agreement it would be a major achievement. As it has already been decided to go for voting, it is imperative to facilitate the voting procedure so that the constitution, which the people desire, materializes. The parties have had more than enough time to fulfil the people’s mandate, but they have failed miserably, and in the process they have let the people down. As the future of the country is in jeopardy, it is more than necessary for the political parties, and the major ones in particular to get the constitution writing task consummated.
At a loss
Cooking gas is still not available as conveniently as it should have been. It has been more than
six months that the latest scarcity had driven the
consumers to their wit’s end. The government’s pledge to ensure the smooth supply of petroleum products, including cooking gas, has been mere lip service. Over and above that, the safety of the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders remains a
very crucial issue. Thousands of gas cylinders in the country are very old and that they could explode any time is a matter of deep concern. In fact, many
people have succumbed to the cooking gas cylinder explosions.
The fact is acknowledged that many cylinders have flaws which makes the filled ones a virtual explosive. In this regard, the government is not moving to guarantee the safety of the LPG cylinders. It is the responsibility of both the government and the Nepal Oil Corporation to ensure the safety of the cylinders as the faulty ones may explode and can cause extensive damages together with the loss of human lives. The silence in this regard may probably hint at protecting the defaulters, which cannot be tolerated.