What is the Country’s Problem?

  6 min 55 sec to read
What is the Country’s Problem?

It’s generally known that Nepalis who have been unable to successfully find jobs in the country have been going abroad for years to find work in the name of getting an education. But for some time now, there have been reports that even well educated and well established people, working at the highest levels of institutions like banks, who have a good name and reputation in the government and private sector are also now rushing abroad. Over the past few months, hundreds of chartered accountants, who were doing well in Nepal, have migrated to countries including Canada.

Has this country become unlivable? Has it become Sierra Leone or Syria? Has there been bloodshed and conflict like in the Congo? Nothing of that sort has happened in the country. Instead, the war has come to an end. We don’t have a Taliban like rule here like in Afghanistan, either. Then, why this rush to leave the country? 

I tried to find out by meeting the eminent people of society, intellectuals, police officers, leaders and others.

I started with meeting a big businessman and asking him, "How is your business going now-a-days?"

He replied, “It is difficult to survive because of politics and bureaucracy. Things are really tight!”

I said, “But, looking back at the last one or two decades, I see that you guys have made good progress. Things look pretty good when you look at the buildings, when you look at the cars that drive around in the city, and when you look at the way you guys hold yourself.”

The businessman spoke to me in a slightly disgruntled voice, "Speak slowly, the boss and leaders might hear us. Where have the other countries reached? Where do we stand? Is just seeing the cars on the streets and the new buildings in the city enough?”

I then thought there must be some problem. And so I went to ask a government official. "Saap, why are you causing problems for the industrialists and businessmen? What is your problem in particular?"

He looked at me and said very seriously, “Look, journalist brother. Industrialists, businessmen keep earning wealth. But what about us? Are we there just to certify their wealth? On top of everything, we are civil servants. Servants, you know, servants! And everyone knows that leaders and ministers are our masters! We do what they tell us to do. Isn’t obedience a good virtue?”

I asked him again, “Do you really care about the country?”

He replied, “We do care about the country. But there are other things as well that we care about. If our colleagues from other departments are sent to lucrative offices or go abroad, and we cannot go ourselves, then our hearts ache. Moreover, it’s not our job to listen to the businessmen and industrialists. We have to listen to the minister!”

I remembered a police officer working for justice and good governance. And I ran off to meet him. I asked, "What do you think is the main problem of the nation at this time?"

The police officer said, “Law and order is the main problem. Customs evasion is happening all over the country. Corruption is increasing by leaps and bounds. Employees do not work, and they blame the police.”

The leader said, "Look, the biggest problem is to win again from where you won the election once. If you don’t win, your politics is over! And to win the election there is no alternative other than to employ all the tricks of the trade.

I asked, "They say that some murders, rapes and corruption are also committed by the police!"

He said, "Sir, our whole day is spent searching and looking for things or people. We don't have a free minute; you talk about murder and rape. I say that those policemen are lucky, who find time to commit crimes despite their busy lives. There is no doubt that crime is very high in the country. But what are the things that you expect the police to do? Should the police go to the airport to catch smuggled gold and smugglers or collect cash? Should they help in robbing a bank or fix a theft case? To say that crime has increased means that criminals have also increased. But the police have not increased. Because the number of positions in the police has not increased. Then how can the police keep pace with the criminals?”

"So that's the sole reason why the police have failed to stop crime and have not caught the criminals?"

He said, “Look, there are eight directions. Criminals can run in any direction. If we were to send police in all eight directions to find and catch criminals, then at least two policemen have to be deployed in each direction. That means it takes at least 16 policemen to catch one criminal! Again, the police are needed for the security of leaders, former leaders, ministers, former ministers etc. The police have to be sent over to watch processions and rallies and they also have to be sent on peacekeeping missions. From where are we supposed to get that amount of police personnel?”

I wasn’t satisfied. Then I thought, the chief of police is the home minister. Maybe he will give me the right answer? So I hurried off to the minister's quarters.

I asked, “Honorable Minister, murders, violence, rapes and smuggling are taking place in broad daylight in the country. But why is law and order so slow to act?”

The Home Minister said, "Where is it so slow? It is going with the flow!"

I said again, "Order is fast, but the law is slow?”

The minister replied, “Don’t try to understand it in bits; take it all at once!”

I asked again, “There is nothing going on in the ministries these days. Why is that so?”

The minister said, "Well, these employees do not work at all. They don’t listen to us. What can we do?”

After the minister's answers became more and more unsatisfying, I went to meet a big leader and asked, "Netaji, tell me what is the country’s biggest problem right now?"

The leader said, "Look, the biggest problem is to win again from where you won the election once. If you don’t win, your politics is over! And to win the election there is no alternative other than to employ all the tricks of the trade. The people here are bad. They say give a job to my son. They say fix the contract for us. Now when everything starts to be fixed, something always will go wrong.”

I asked, "As a journalist and an intellectual, how can I help to solve the problems of the country?"

The leader said, "Just make me sound good. You can definitely help me not as an intellectual, but as a gangster.”

I said, “I have to be born again to be a gangster, don’t I?”

The leader said, "So come to me after that happens. Democracy will prosper. Elections will keep happening. Not a big deal. Visit me later again.”

I left speechless. I for one could not figure out the problem of the country. What about you? If you have, please drop me a line! 

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