20 years ago this week, Nepali Times published an exclusive on the 50th anniversary of the 1950 Indo-Nepal Friendship Treaty. Two decades later, the border dispute between Nepal and India shows that tensions persist. Excerpt:
Was it coincidence, or planned? Prime Minister Koirala chose 31 July to embark on his trip to India. It was exactly 50 years ago on this day that the infamous Indo-Nepal Peace and Friendship Treaty was signed. The treaty with a newly independent India was entered into by the last Rana Prime Minister, Mohan SJB Rana.
The same issue has an interview with Deputy Speaker Chitra Lekha Yadav in which she talks about women in Parliament, gender mainstreaming, women as leaders, women in politics. Not much has changed in the politics of patriarchy in Nepal. Excerpt from interview:
“For some reason it is only women parliamentarians who are expected to raise women’s issues. I think gender issues should be the concern of the state as well as of lawmakers, irrespective of gender. I believe it is the responsibility of all the MPs to help boost the participation of the weaker members of the society in the process of democratisation and national development. Women lag behind males in various social fronts, and that should be a matter of concern to people’s representatives.
Another report titled ‘Rubbish politics’ written by Hemlata Rai is on the politics of garbage management in Kathmandu. Another problem that has not been addressed in 20 years. Excerpt from the report:
Nothing in Nepal is what it seems. This is also true for the rotting piles of rubbish on the sidewalks. This is no ordinary trash: someone is letting it pile up to make a political point.
During his first tenure as a Local Development Minister back in 1991, Ram Chandra Poudel, embarrassed by public outrage over trash piling up on the streets, promised an end to Kathmandu’s chronic garbage crisis.
Today, Poudel is back as Local Development Minister (and Deputy Prime Minister to boot) and the garbage is still here. And once more, just as in 1991, the heaps of rubbish signify the tussle between Poudel’s ministry and the office of Kathmandu’s mayor.
Kathmandu’s long-suffering citizens are fed up. For them, the garbage is symbolic of everything that is wrong with politicians and their petty fights that is ruining the country.