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Tampering

editAllowing jurisprudence to actually gauge the effects of the judiciary reversing previous decisions on the Lok Man Singh Karki case last week, the singular progress made in the political sector is the enablement of his persecution tabled in the legislature. The impudence lies in the decision ignoring the participation of decision-makers still in the system who lifted him to that post and now choose to chase him out of it. Of course, politics will allow this to be dismissed as yet another ‘mistake’. However, none will be able to deny its effects on the office from which Karki is being chased out. Moreover, the dragging in of the Rayamajhi Commission blemishing his qualification quite naturally blemishes other high appointments with similar qualification questioning the veracity of such decision-makers who are the untouchables of Nepali society today. Moreover, in Karki’s case, the fact that he is a pension-holding former government servant with the same qualifications that the judicial decision ignored remains a misnomer. Karki is of course an individual with which the system can play to suit politics. What such playing does to the institution may remain shunted aside for politics sake this round. But what the decision does to the functioning of an independent judiciary or a powerful anti-corruption Ombudsman becomes stark. Modern Nepal has the institutions associated with a modern democracy but the concern that these structures must function as designed has quite obviously to take a back seat to politics. Functionally, we are retrograding.
It is this concern that must be paramount for the state today. The emphasis on a modern constitution to suit a new Nepal is actually diminishing through practice even the old vestiges of the state. This reconstruction most evinced in the new structures that the new constitution is envisaging is, in effect, actually deconstructing the state. Take the question of elections in modern Nepal. The reconstruction of the state on federal lines is already widening the schism between the hills and the plains on simple lines of demarcation of the borders of the federated states. That there was no participation of the local population in these reconstructions is by now too clear. For the system now to approach local elections at this phase where the primary squabble is on grounds of the federation would seem fool-hardy jurisprudence-wise but would appear wise politically. Monopoly organizations can now turn their cadre and through them the population to direct their attention to the local levels since the centre finds the constitutional tangle of federal borders too difficult to tangle. The people should have been consulted in the very first place. But, again, that was a ‘mistake’. And so, as things, stand, the local institutions are to be manned by elected representative as a panacea for the current mess if one is to go by current political trends. But, again, logistics and legalism and time-bound constitutional provisions may prove impediments. So we are to remedy this by opting for elections to the national legislature first? One simple question on the rule of law: Does the constitution say this? So what? A simple change in government when the government lost its majority can be facilitated by a Presidential decree; such ad hoc-ism can surely serve politics again. After all, that was how the constituent assembly was reconstituted a while back. Yes, and this can quite possibly serve our political monopoly well. This is new Nepal.

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