Saturday, May 16, 2015

The reason why donors ,individuals and groups are avoiding the infamous one-window policy is because political representatives have sullied the name of the nation to enrich themselves

Having been Nepali for a mere 44 years of my total age of 72, I wonder whether I might add word or two-or 3 or 4?
The fact is years ago I was given the 'cold shoulder' by the then 'The Rising Nepal' for being critical of certain actions and policies in a weekly column I wrote (Life in Action). It thus ended after 13  years. 
I just wanted to comment on one aspect. I don't understand why Sushil Koirala, Ram Sharan Mahat or  the UN Secretary General should be puzzled at the lack of money coming in to the P.M.'s Fund for Earthquake Relief.
Having spent the best part of 3 weeks gathering together and sending off relief items and communicating with former colleagues and family throughout the world, I eventually directed them to donate to medical relief mechanisms and children's relief.
The reason why donors ,individuals and groups are avoiding the infamous one-window policy is because political representatives have sullied the name of the nation to enrich themselves. This  is not rumour it is fact.I ,too, worked in the remote areas from the 1970s to 1990 and, in short, have watched greed grow and compassion decrease. Bihariji  is correct, we had built so much in the past and then, in sweeps another clutch of political heroes to trash what has been built and take over.
The offices in the old Rana palaces should have been retrofitted, and the same was advised some time ago. The Malla heritage sites should have been secured, but hey, our politicians didn't build them so why care?Thanks to these( what should we call them?) short-sighted individuals  we have lost our collective personality. Dolakha ,a special place, dates back to the 7th century and much of Nepal's history is interwoven with its treasures.But then why would the government care? They  care about who gets what. That it is it!  

The biggest grievance I hold is the education system. Successive governments have destroyed it ,sometimes through misplaced xenophobic world views. Our children hunger for education, and it surely is education that will bring Nepal into the 21st century.Coming from a Fabian family it is painful to witness the disappointment of so many good teachers of our generation when each political change over . 

I don't know about Bihariji, but I personally gnash my teeth almost every time I meet a yuppie from a slick NGO who lectures to me (me being seen  ex-pat of course) about women's empowerment and  development in Nepal. Bihariji used to trek up to Humla when there were no jeep tracks and when international development  workers wouldn't , preferring an office in Kathmandu and a chauffeur driven blue  plate.

But they are Guests in this Country and it's not their fault. It's our fault for permitting a largely well-meaning cadre of individuals be guided by our  grand-standing 'savants'.

On 16 May 2015 at 09:48, <> wrote:

Dear All:


This forum "The Himalayan Voice" contains numerous email addresses from "Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers Singh Durbar" to several former Prime Ministers, Minsters, Political leaders,  Drs, Professors and innumerable Intellectuals from within and out side of Nepal. Unfortunately, no other recipients except a few like BK Shresthaji, TK Karkiji, Tilak Shresthaji and Prof. Madan Dahalji respond to the opinions expressed on these exchanges. It seems to me, most of the people including the politicians ignore, do not bother to participate or respond. The political leaders who are talked about in most cases, have never been seen to rebut on what they are accused of. As such, either they admit their wrong doing or they don't seem care about public opinion. 


BK Shresthaji, on his "One window policy" has also mentioned about the growth of community forest and stories about the introduction and success that followed on children/mother health care in rural Nepal. He, in his recent mass email exchanges has claimed himself as the proponent/initiator of the programs. If that is the case, Shresthaji deserves lot of thanks and gratitude for his dedication and service to Nepal.


Now, talking about the devastation left by the Massive Earthquake three weeks ago, news items and TV news footage from the quake stricken area show the situation chaotic and full of miseries. The leaders are doing nothing except few photo opportunities. They do not seem serious in helping the victims. They just indulge in criticism and incite their followers against what the other parties does.


Shresthaji has mentioned how the Chief Secretary, a competent and popular bureaucrat has been sidelined recently by the Government. Also Dr. Aruna Uprety's observation on Nepal Government's tardiness and incompetency in dealing with flood victims of Dang and Surkhet could be taken as an evidence on the incompetency of Government.


Based on the information that is coming from Nepal currently, Shresthaji's proposal that the President should take over and assign the Task of the Relief and Reconstruction to Nepal Army, makes lot of sense. I totally agree with Shresthaji because Nepal Army, Police, Armed police have done an excellent job in Rescue and Relief operation thus far.


After the completion of immediate Relief phase, another very important work of reconstruction begins. Millions of Nepalis from within the country and millions more from outside of Nepal have been pouring in funds and have extended hands to help fellow Nepali victims. Neighboring countries like India and China and most of countries of the world have been giving tens of millions of dollars to help Nepal and Nepalis. Besides the countries in all the continents, private citizens, movies stars, celebrities etc all over the world have been raising millions of dollars to help the victims of Nepal. Nepalis have been experiencing overwhelming help and support financially and materially since the day the devastating Earthquake hit Nepal. As such, billions of dollar worth of money and material will come to Nepal. If the money accumulated is properly utilized in reconstruction, Nepal will certainly bounce back and will become a New and modern Nation. The Great Earthquake that came like a curse could be converted to boon for Nepal.


In this time of grave crisis, the political leaders are supposed to work hardest in helping the people. Unfortunately, no leader has shown any sacrifice, they are self centered, they don't care for the people in real sense. The leaders enrich themselves. Corruption has become a culture of the politicians in this country. They only indulge in "Bhadbanda", conspire as how to get their hand on Earthquake fund. Most of them have become so rich and wealthy with under the table commission, illegal business and what not. But they are not happy yet, they want more money and more luxury. Therefore, the political parties and their leaders should have no access to the reconstruction fund.


As stated above, the President should take over the Reconstruction of Nepal with the help of honest and true Nepali. He could trust Nepal Army to take the responsibility. However, the President with the help of honest and trust worthy experts should devise such a mechanism that every penny that comes for reconstruction should be accounted for and every penny spent should be properly utilized and audited. Nepalis and even donor countries should have access to the accounts of reconstruction fund. The accounting system should be 100 percent transparent. However, there should be check and balance. Even the political parties, their leaders should have access to see how the reconstruction fund are being handled. They should also have the right to know about every income and expenses of reconstruction. As the political leaders are not allowed to touch the fund, they however, should have right to know how Nepal Army is using the money to build Nepal. If this policy is implemented, Nepal will turn around and become a New and prosperous country within a few years.




Uttam B. Khatri           

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