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Looters’ haven

By PR Pradhan
pushpa-columnBy adopting the present constitution we are encouraging corruption and daylight robbery in the nation. At a time when the flood victims are unable to manage food for their survival, our “loktantrik” government has decided to provide two hundred thousand rupees each to the newly assigned state ministers for their house rent. Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba (perhaps by respecting the spirit of the new constitution), has introduced a super jumbo cabinet just to fulfill the wish of the MPs to become a minister rather than to work for the nation. The latest expansion of the cabinet has led to a 46-member Council of Ministers including three deputy prime ministers, 19 ministers and 23 state ministers. According to the new constitution, there should not be more than 25 ministers in the federal government. Still, the present cabinet is in the process of expansion as Deuba has assured the RPP Democratic, splinter from RPP, to provide the post of four ministers and four state ministers. If it his happens, the Deuba led cabinet will be of 54 members.
According to reports, after the expansion of the cabinet, the ministries had to face problems in managing offices for the new state ministers. Reports state that the state ministers have no job to do except from enjoying the government facilities including hoisting national flags on their vehicles and residences. This is the example of daylight loot by the political parties. The political leaders have not been able to prove themselves for being committed in nation building, however, they have brought this “loktantra” to loot the nation.
The other sad part is that the leaders and senior government officials are directly and visibly involved in big corruption cases and they are beyond the CIAA net. It seems, the CIAA has become a very weak organization and the court has been highly politicized, thus, we can see those corrupt leaders and officials staying in the society with high morale. This has given the message that corruption is not a crime in this “new” Nepal!
Talking about corruption, as there is no strong mechanism to control it, it is going to flourish further in the days to come. Organised and planned corruption can be witnessed in Nepal where big political leaders are involved. Now-a-days these leaders have started to talk about executive president or prime minister directly elected by the people. If this happens, this will be a license to loot the nation by the directly elected president or prime minister as they are in politics to make money and not to serve the nation.
To conclude, the present political structure will be very expensive as there is no strong organ to balance the political parties and political leaders. Leaders are compelled to be involved in money making business to run the party and also to make money for themselves. Under the present constitution, we experienced the first local elections in six provinces and soon we are witnessing local elections in one province. The elections were so expensive that the candidates for the post of Ward Chairman had to spend minimum 3 to 5 million rupees, whereas, the candidate to the post of the Rural Municipality had to spend 10 to 15 million rupees excluding the expenditure made by the party. Obviously, those elected candidates’ first aim is to get back the money spent during the election. From this point, corruption will start in the local bodies.
The leaders are saying that now Singha Durwar has reached to the villages. But not to forget, Singha Durwar is the corruption palace and now it has gone to the village level.

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