--BY MADAN LAMSAL
People say that most politicians, bureaucrats and cops take bribes in Nepal, and the rich sip imported beer while the poor don't have even enough bread to eat. When you ask them why this is you’re told that it is because the Nepalis lag behind in everything. However, I, for one, beg to differ. We are not that much behind the developed countries. In fact, we are ahead of them in many aspects.
For example, look at the so-called developed countries like the USA and the UK or even our neighbours India and China. In these countries, after becoming the prime minister or president, people are glued to these posts for 4-5 years. And it's very rare for the same person to be reappointed to the same post. But look at our country - we have set a record of electing 10 prime ministers in as many years! And there is another record as well. The same person gets appointed to the post of prime minister time and again. Sher Bahadur Deuba, who became the country's prime minister for the fourth time recently, is a burning example. Is there anyone in the so-called developed countries, making such a progress? Isn't it a matter of great pride for us?
Some people say Deuba should prove his competence this time. But really, who tells these people “what more competence does Deuba need to show?” even after becoming the prime minister for the fourth time! Should he open his chest like Hanuman in the Ramayana to show he is capable? These people should consider Deuba's unique qualities. Others talk much, meaning they work less. Deuba does less talking, meaning he works more. On top of this, he has himself said that he will do a lot this time. He is daring and courageous. We should not forget how bravely he had run the campaign to finish the Maoists off when the Maoist insurgency was at its peak. He had put a price on the heads of the top Maoist leaders. But that's not all. Deuba has also set examples of reconciliation. In other words, he is a true follower of BP Koirala's policy of national reconciliation. It is for the whole world to see how tactfully he reconciled with the same Maoists recently. He had reconciled with the then King Gyanendra as well. He also stands firmly by his decisions; how he made the rebel candidates from his party keep quiet during the recently held local elections is still fresh in our memory. The list of his unique qualities is a long one. We Nepalis are grateful to have a PM like him!
Let's look at another example of Nepal's progress. In other countries, only senior economists and experts are appointed to posts of finance minister, finance secretary and central bank governor. But in Nepal, people who don't know even the a b c's of economics are appointed to such posts. But even such people run the show properly. We have seen that. The fact is, no matter who gets appointed to such posts, it's the civil servants who do the actual work. So, it hardly matters who gets appointed to such coveted posts.
The Japanese have developed a train which can travel at the speed of 603 km per hour. It's said now the Germans are developing a Mercedes car which will go even faster than that. However, we Nepalis are not behind. People are already talking about starting a monorail in Nepal. It's not only CPN-UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli who has talked about the monorail. After being elected the mayor of Kathmandu recently, Bidya Sundar Shakya made the same announcement. We Nepalis are just as smart. We know how to operate WhatsApp, Facebook, LinkedIn, Viber, Twitter etc. Almost every Nepali knows how to upload their photos on these apps. Though other things are getting expensive, data is getting cheaper and cheaper!
Some people don't understand what is what. Immediately after being appointed the President of South Korea recently, Moon Jae-in declared, "I have come into the office with empty pockets and I will leave with empty pockets." Jae-in had visited Nepal two years ago. But he couldn't learn from the Nepali politicians who assume their offices with empty pockets but accumulate wealth enough for generations when they leave their offices.
What more evidence is needed to prove that Nepalis are way ahead in many things than the people of many other countries?