Thursday, April 30, 2009

MAY DAY!! MAY DAY!!

This morning's (1 May) Kathmandu Post (not the other Indian-controlled daily) puts it succinctly: The Thauus have shut down the Terai (20 districts) for 9 days; essential commodities are in short supply; prices have soared; the queues at the petrol stations in Kathmandu are serpentine; there are daily strikes; and insecurity is rife.

Yet the Neros in our government fiddle on. The Maoists want to, if necessary, unilaterally sack the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Katwal. The Nepali Congress (NC), as the main oppositin party, is adamantly against it, and for once is showing aome mettle. The UML, which is neither Marxist-Leninist nor united, has come up with a brainless formula - sack Katwal, his number two Khadka (who is trying to be COAS by kissing the Maoists' you-know-what), as well as the Defense Minister Gurung, a top Maoist. NC opposes this. The Maoists, naturally, don't want Gurung removed.

This melodrama is being played out at the expense of the Nepali people who made the Maoists the largest party in the Constituent Assembly. The title of this piece is not a celebration of May 1. Rather, it is the call sign for aircrafts and ships in distress. This country is in distress, without a shadow of doubt. While the daily lives of its people deteriorate, the government is engrossed in political shananigans.

Today we are supposed to celebrate workers' rights. The only workers who have rights in this country are those belonging to the Maoist-affiliated unions. The rest remain as they were - in the morass of feudal, nepotistic constraints. More than half a million Nepalis are working abroad. How they must be celebrating their rights as Nepali workers today!

And while we may shout "May Day" at the top of our voices, asking for help, let there be no misconceptions. The only help can come from we ourselves. Donors, international organizations, and our giant neighbours look promisimg as aid-givers. Let us not live in a fool's paradise. Millions, even billions, of donor dollars may pour into Nepal; but as long as those dollars line the pockets of a corrupt government and further bolster the dominance of the economic elite, nothing will change.

So, "MAY DAY!"

9 comments:

Subodh said...

Very good title to the piece indeed! But what is to be done (Sto delatch - in Russian) to paraphrase V. I. Lenin himself! I have got a new motto, "Bloggers of the World Unite!"

HORATIO said...

"What is to be done?", indeed. Vladimir had rather concrete ideas. I think we all do too. As good ol' Bobby sang, "The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind".

Unfortunately, in our case, the wind blows south far too much.

Anonymous said...

It is indeed a very nice piece. But I don't see any real workers in Nepal. Who will spend working when everything could be achieved by looting, intimidation, killing, etc. Big bellies of the politicians are the good excuse for all Nepalese not to work hard. And the workers are their copy-cats. Take the money from politicians and kill the innocent. This May Day is only for them. Let them celebrate who say this is the 'Might of the Gun Day'. To be noted, the Nationalists/Patriots can easily use guns if needed.

(Defense Minister is Ram Bahadur Thapa).

Bishal Shah, NY.

HORATIO said...

Corrections:

1. 2nd line: Tharus, not Thauus;

2. Defense Minister is Ram Bahadur Thapa "Badal", not Gurung.

My apologies.

govind said...

Well what can we do-ke garne?Let us just hope the future of the youths of this country is not jeopardized.
Govind

HORATIO said...

Govind, oh no - not "ke garne?"! Fatalism has been one of the critical woes of our society.

HORATIO said...

NOTICE TO ALL:

When you open my blog site, you might see an "objectionable material" link at the top left corner. DO NOT CLICK ON IT! Every time it is clicked, Blogger records it; and if it is clicked enough, might actually delete my site.

Some fool has apparently reported my blog to Blogger as having "objectionable material". One doesn't need to be a rocket scientist to guess who that might be!!

Anonymous said...

"The only workers who have rights in this country are those belonging to the Maoist-affiliated unions." Birat you could not have said it better.How is this different from the Panchayat days?

Let us face it we Nepalis are a feudal bunch ( note the rampant chakari especially in this Maobadi set up, General Khadka is a case in point).

It takes a lot to change ourselves than just spewing Maoist thoughts.

Dont know where the answer lies. Since we have exhausted many possibilities, perhaps try spirituality ( not religion per se) for a change.

Anonymous said...

The last post seems to imply that we should give up and try religion or go banbas - alright point well taken for conversation sake. Now let's boot strap and ask again - What is to be done?

The answer lies within us - the question rather is - do we have the courage to reach in and execute?

Comon' boys - its always hard to do things that are hard, but time has come for Men amongst us boys to rise up and act like men !!