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Pushpa Raj Pradhan

Everything possible in “new” Nepal

By PR Pradhan

The suspicious disappearance of a Sherpa guide after successfully ascending to the summit Mt Everest has become an attractive story for the international media. It is suspected that the members of the Ukrainian expedition, with the fear that the hard disk of illegal crypto-currency, which was hidden on top of Mt. Everest may have been found by the only Nepali eyewitness. Thus Lambabu Sherpa, the guide of the expedition, might have been killed.
The members of the expedition team have made public a video of the five hundred thousand ASK cryptocurrency, which was hidden atop Mt. Everest and any of the brave clambers ascended the world’s highest summit could recover the said amount of cryptocurrency.
Astonishing, cryptocurrency is banned in Nepal, but how it became possible for the expedition team to carry such a banned item from the Tribhuvan International Airport to the Mt. Everest, that is mysterious.
The Italian contractor has stopped work at the final stage of completion of the much-talked Melamchi Drinking Water Project. The government had claimed that it would be able to supply water from Melamchi to every household in Kathmandu before the Dasain festival. Now, after the halting of the construction works, it has become impossible to provide drinking water from the Project before the Dasain festival.
Let’s watch other sectors. At a time when 90 percent of project works have been completed, for last one and a half months, the company has stopped construction works all of a sudden. The Italian company, CMC has demanded one billion 650 million rupees as compensation and an additional 540 days to complete the project giving reason for not being able to work due to the earthquake and other hurdles. Such type of demands for compensation is not a new thing in the Melamchi case only. Our own corrupt officials in the verification team and others associated in the construction project advise the foreign contractors for making such claims on the condition of sharing the compensation amount. If our officers and political leaders were clean, the nation should not have faced delay in construction projects and unbearable losses to the nation. All the projects of national pride are facing the same fate.
Currently, Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa has instructed officials to take strong action against the construction entrepreneurs who have not finished their work in time. The fact is that they all are closely linked to the top political leaders and also project officers. Both the leaders and project officials have enjoyed commission received from the construction entrepreneurs. If they were strict and action was taken against the wrong doing, the projects could have been completed in time. Due to the delay in the construction projects, on the one hand, the nation is facing losses, on the other hand, the commoners have become great sufferers. Forget about what is happening outside the Valley, even in the capital city, the road widening and upgrading projects have been delayed for years. Those political parties and concerned government officials have remained silent as they have taken and enjoyed commission from the contractors. The contractors, after receiving money in advance, are found investing in lucrative sectors such as land purchase by keeping in limbo the construction works. Therefore, Minister Thapa may not become successful in his pursuit due to the non-cooperation from the political parties and bureaucracy. First of all, he should be able to identify the corrupt political leaders involved in such activities including those in his own party and also the bureaucrats and punish them to achieve success in his mission.
Since the dawn of multiparty democracy in 1990, perversion has been seen in every sector. After limiting the powers of the institute of monarchy and putting it at the constitutional position and later completely ousting it, the first thing the political leaders of the day had done was institutionalization of corruption and commission. Overnight, political leaders became multi-billionaires. This is an example that how corrupt politics has spoiled every organs of the government.
Look at the 33 kgs gold smuggling episode. Until now, the probe committee has not been able to recover the smuggled gold and also the real owner of the gold!

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