Whatever may be the temporary positive note that the political leaders of the Big Three parties come up with, it unfortunately hits a roadblock very soon. If the High Level Political Mechanism (HLPM) had been formed with the special initiative of late NC leader Girija Prasad Koirala, its direction seems to have been lost in the competition as to who would be the coordinator. That the leadership of HLPM, a sort of self set up body by the NC, UML and UCPN (M), is creating all furore in the political circle seems to be a misconception. The sudden passing away of GP Koirala brought out very conciliatory tones from the top leadership of all the parties, namely the NC. But, barely after the state mourning period, the leadership of NC became a contentious issue with the top three leaders, Sushil Koirala, Sher Bahadur Deuba and Ram Chandra Poudel, trying to throw their weight around to be the one to steer the party. This episode received such publicity that the facts were twisted to present the said leaders in a very bad light which, of course, is expected not to be the way it has been made to look like. It is true that the party functioning has to move on and, in this, the role of every member is important, and it would be flush out if the same intra-party wrangling were to surface with the NC resuming normal work after the thirteen-day rituals for GP Koirala are over. As the party is at a crucial phase, foresightedness must come to the fore, rather than petty personal ideas of supremacy. The squabble over every issue can only come through a united stance that NC leaders have to exhibit.
As a part of the moves for enhanced understanding and supportive stances among the major parties, parleys have already begun, albeit on an informal level. What is not unusual for such party to party meets are that they generally end on inconclusive notes or, at the most, on a positive note sans any concrete conclusion. Of all the parties that the NC has been dealing all through the years, the UCPN (M) steals the limelight. And, the Maoists never tire of saying that they are doing everything possible on their part for the timely promulgation of the constitution. That is where it ends as no steps in earnest materializes to give the fillip to the vocal agreement. This may have to do with the Maoists’ message that they are for the statute in time as if to project a positive image among the people. It boils down to one things, that is, all the parties without any exception have not been particular in getting the statute drafting task moving ahead with speed. On the surface it may look like the lawmakers playing the delay game, but to the knowledgeable the major parties are playing it. If the Big Three agree, no hurdle will remain for the statute to move to its promulgation date.
Over and above, all the parties are now aware of the short duration left for statute promulgation, but more than anything nothing tangible is being done to utilize fruitfully whatever time that is in hand. The only thing people experience is that the leaders flash out commitments and promises at a moment’s notice but action as per the roadmap goes missing to everyone’s discomfiture.
Yet again we see another hefty increase in the public transport fare. The fare has been hiked by as much as 9.9 per cent. This rise is going to make commuting and traveling on journeys dearer. This hike in transport fare comes after the price of petrol and diesel and other petroleum products was increased some time ago. One can understand the compulsion under which the Ministry of Labor and Transport Management and transport entrepreneurs came to this deal, but this has hit the common man hard who is finding it difficult to cope with the rise in prices of essential commodities, among other things.
However, what should be noted is that the service provided by the transport sector is mostly appalling. The public transport has only to be watched particularly during rush hours. They are mostly packed beyond capacity. Adding to the inconvenience it causes to people traveling in such transport, they make commuting hazardous. The transporters appear to be left off easily as we can see people grimly holding on to the doors outside of overcrowded vehicles. While raising the transport fare thought should also be given to provide quality services as well looking beyond the profit motive.