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Oli Administration And its Activities

Issue January 2019

Oli Administration And its Activities

Siddhi B. Ranjitkar


Prime Minister KP Oli laid the foundation stone for constructing a dry port at the Chovar area previously belonged to the Himal Cement Company despite the protest of the local folks. Is it the right locality for the dry port the financier “The World Bank” needed to answer? The administration has been heavily abusing the State-run media particularly the Nepali newspaper “gorkhapatra” to elevate the status of Prithvi Narayan Shah. The administration is holding the investors conference even though such conference had been held without any results in the past. The industry minister has been grappling to plug the holes at Nepal Oil Corporation to prevent the leakage of oil, and to manage the sugar import and run the sugar mills for the benefits of both the sugarcane farmers and sugar mill owners. The cabinet has decided to open up a Sea Transport Office. The administration is tending to disrupt the smoothly running private schools forcing them to convert into the trust run schools. The Oli administration boasted the economic growth at eight percent despite ‘The World Bank’ and other multi-national banks have hardly targeted at six percent.


On January 17, 2019 with the heavy presence of security, Prime Minister Oli performed the Hindu rituals for laying a foundation stone for constructing a dry port at Chovar. Mr. Oli needs to know that Nepal is not only of the Hindus but also of many other folks that have different faiths than the Hindu, as the people’s constitution has clearly stated. Has Mr. Oli the mindset of inclusive or exclusive performing only the Hindu rituals for laying the foundation stone?


The second thing Mr. Oli needs to understand is that the area where Mr. Oli has laid the foundation stone for constructing a dry port belonged to the local folks who had lost to the despotic Panchayat rule the kings had led for 30 years. For setting up the Himal Cement factory, the then Panchayat administration usurped the land making hundreds of the farmers poor overnight, and making them suffer from the poverty, and hundreds if not thousands of their children, too from deprivation.


Now, instead of returning the land to the rightful owners and apologizing them for what the Panchayat people had done in the past, the Oli administration has laid the foundation stone for constructing a dry port with the loan from ‘The World Bank’ even without thinking twice whether the spot is suitable for the dry port or not. Probably, the so-called experts working for ‘The World Bank’ ignored the fact of unsuitability of the spot in view of the goods that would bring to this port have to go across the country. Probably, the Oli administration has no such power to analyze the geographical, commercial, economical and social viability of such a spot for the dry port. So, they just follow what the donor agency or agencies say.


On January 18, 2019, “Gorkhapatra” has the quote of Prime Minister Oli saying, “This port will be useful for the store of the goods brought by the southern railroads and the northern railroads.” Now, the question is where these goods would go. Surely, these goods are not for the folks in the Kathmandu Valley only but for the entire population of Nepal. Then, the second question is why those goods that would be traveling to Biratnagar to the east and Mahendranagar to the west need to travel to Kathmandu. The third question is whether this spot has the adequate area to store the goods brought both by the southern railroads and the northern railroads.


Probably, this dry port has been a failure even at the time of the laying of the foundation stone for its construction. Its fate would be that of the Himal Cement factory, which went down to Hetauda: the most appropriate place. So, most probably even before the completion of the construction of the dry port, it might need to move to Hetauda or some other place at the central Terai so that the goods traveling to this port would have an easy access to east, west, north and south.


The fourth question is why the Oli administration needs to build a dry port when the railroads are no where to be seen but also even the feasibility study of these railroads have not been done so far. If the history of the highly hyped Melamchi Drinking Water project and other so-called nationally important projects were a guide then the dry port would hardly be completed in the next 20 years.


Then, why The World Bank and the Oli administration have been moving so fast to build the dry port. Again, the guess is probably for the huge commission on the activities of the dry port the project brings to the people working for the project at the right place and at the right time.


The experts have been saying that Nepal has to wean off the foreign assistance because it has been the poison to the fast economic development of the country giving the example of the South Korea that has discarded the foreign assistance at the early stage of its economic development. Probably, this dry port would open up the eyes of the planners and economists that have been at the positions of advisors to the prime minister and ministers to advise the ministers including the prime minister what the right thing to do for the economic development without having the greed of commissions.


The administration has been heavily abusing the State-run media particularly the Nepali newspaper “gorkhapatra” to misinform the people; so it has been shame to read it. For example, Pradeep Nepal wrote in his opinion article published in “gorkhapatra” on January 17, 2019 that if Prithvi Narayan Shah had not won the valley neither we would have The Living Goddess Kumari, nor the Gai Jatra, nor Pashupatinath, nor the Hanumandhoka. Probably, it is something like saying that if KP Oli has not been the prime minister we would not have this country what we have today. Perhaps, so-called intellectuals including Pradeep Nepal have been selling their knowledge and intelligence as the prostitutes have been selling their bodies for a meager profit.


On the occasion of 297th birth anniversary of Prithvi Narayan Shah, Prime Minister Oli instead of apologizing to the descendents of the victims of the monstrous atrocities of Prithvi Narayan Shah for such inhuman actions, and then promising to redress their sufferings, sent the police to stop the Kirtipurians from doing what they had been doing for two-and-a-half centuries to protest against the atrocities of Prithvi Shah. Mr. Oli has trampled the people’s constitution not allowing the people to peacefully express their centuries old grievances.


One thousand Kirtipurians had suffered from the cutting of their noses and ears at the hands of the soldiers Prithvi Shah had sent to take the revenge on them for resisting his arm assaults. This figure has been deducted from the research fact given by two historians: Vaidhya and Manandhar published in “Kantipur” recently on the occasion of the anniversary of Prithvi Shah that stated that Shah had granted two ropanis of land to Brahmans for getting relief from the sin of cutting the nose and ears of each person. The total land thus granted had been two thousands ropanis (One ropani = 75 ft x 75 ft).


The Oli administration has been smart enough to misinform the people even about the revenue collection. Comptroller General Office stated that the government had collected NPR 520 billion against the target of NPR 429 billion in the first half of the current fiscal year (mid-July to mid-January); however, it turned out to be not so; The Central Bank called Nepal Rastra Bank data showed NPR 414.3 billion of the revenue collected for the same period; the explanation given for the wrong data was the double counting of some figures, the news on stated on January 21, 2019.


The next misfortune had fallen on the Kirtipurians was when the then repressive king wanted to set up a university in the name of his father Tribhuvan. It needed land, the king saw the open area in Kirtipur and sent his officials to grab the land despite the protests of the local folks that did not receive any compensation for the land they lost to the king.


Third time the Kirtipurians suffered was when the Panchayat administration set up the Himal Cement factory for which the Kirtipurians had to provide the land again gratis. Then, the Himal Cement factory moved to Hetauda. The land needed to be returned to the rightful landowners. Instead, the Oli administration is constructing a dry port.


Now, the Kirtipurians have to face the construction of the so-called dry port in the area once the Himal Cement Factory flourished. Probably, some evil spirits must have cast a spell on Kirtipurians so that they needed to perpetually suffer from one State administration after another, as they have already suffered from Prithvi Shah, then from the Panchayat administration, now probably from the Oli administration.


The State-run Radio Nepal in its morning news stated on January 18, 2019 that the Oli administration has decided to hold Nepal Investment Summit-2019 in Kathmandu from March 29 to 30, 2019. It is interesting to note that the then Minister for Industry Nabindra Raj Joshi had held such a conference in 2016. Foreign investors had committed to invest in Nepal in billions. Thereafter, none of the administrations had pursued the potential investors. Now, the question is what is the use of holding such a conference or what motive behind it if the administration were not to follow the possible investments?


Every Nepali has been anticipating that the corruption would finally finds its way to hell, as the corrupt officials would be terrified by the actions of mighty Prime Minister Oli that has the votes of two-thirds majority in the federal parliament. However, Mr. Oli even after nine months in office has been still saying that he has zero tolerance or no tolerance for corruption. Is it really so? Common people need the answer given with sincerity not the manipulated misinformation.


For example, the industry minister has been complaining that he has the problem of plugging the holes at Nepal Oil Corporation to stop the leakage of oil that the officials including ministers have been tapping; the recent news in “gorkhapatra” has it.  The minister has also expressed his dissatisfaction about the state of affairs of managing the sugar import and running the sugar mills for the benefits of both the sugarcane farmers and sugar mill owners.


On the morning of January 21, 2019, Deputy Prime Minister Updendra Yadav told the anchor of ‘antar-sambad’: the morning program of the Radio Nepal that the politicians have been facing the dilemma of continuing the use of the mafia money or of ending the mafia so widely spread in the administration. Naturally, the country has the transporters’ mafia, education mafia, land mafia, and so on. Practically, the mafia might be running the country.


Member of sub-committee of the parliamentary Public Account Committee (PAC) formed to probe the potential corruption in purchasing the wide body airplane for Nepal Airlines Corporation: Pradeep Yadav told the Ratopati TV reporter, according to the news on on January 17, 2019 that the chairman of PAC Bharat Shah had removed some papers from the document the sub-committee had prepared and submitted to the PAC, to save the ministers involved in the corrupt deal; lawmakers have said that the actions against Bharat Shah should be taken. Is it the zero tolerance of corruption, Prime Minister Oli?


The news on has stated on January 8, 2019 that the interim order given by Supreme Court (SC) Justice Deepak Raj Joshi allowed the promoter of Muktishree Cement Ajeya Raj Sumargi to withdraw money US$ 7.50 million the Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) had frozen stating that the source of the foreign investment had not been revealed; Joshi had issued the interim order allowing Sumargi to withdraw the amount without even hearing the arguments of NRB. The news also stated that a joint bench of Chief Justice Cholendra Shumsher Rana and Justice Ananda Mohan Bhattarai after hearing arguments of both the sides on Tuesday (January 8, 2019) following the summon of Joshi’s bench to present their respective arguments revoked the interim order and instructed for status quo before that interim order; however, Sumargi had already completed the withdrawal.


Mr. Oli has boldly predicted the economic growth at eight percent despite ‘The World Bank’ and other multi-national banks have hardly targeted at six percent. Even the six percent growth has been the results of the massively destructive earthquakes that hit Nepal in April 2015.


The news in the supplement called ‘Artha Bazaar’ to ”gorkhapatra” stated on January 17, 2019 that the wrong policy of the government has adversely hit the export of raw hides from Biratnagar. The export would be totally evaporated if the government were not to correct the policy, the exporters warned, the news stated.


The recent news has it that the import has increased by 34 percent whereas the export has increased by less than two percent. Where are the new policies of the new finance minister of the party that has said in the election campaign that the income per capita of the Nepalis would be increased to US$ 5,000 within the next five years?


Central Bank called Nepal Rastra Bank has restricted the use of Indian currency to one hundred or lower bills denying the business people, tourists, and people seeking medical treatment in India or Nepal to using the high denominations Indian bank notes causing tremendous retardation of business at the border towns on both sides of the border along the Nepal-India border.


Since the finance minister took office, the stock market has been grappling to survive. The finance minister has not atoned for the sin he has committing stating the wrong thing about the stock market and send it to the downhill. It has not been able to recover from the hit it has taken from the finance minister’s statements. Any prime minister would have fired such a finance minister a long time ago but Mr. Oli has not been awakened, yet.


The Oli administration is for converting the private schools into the trust-run schools in the coming ten years means probably making them as the State-run schools of today where even the teachers of such schools send their kids to the private schools. Is it the Oli administration trying to extend its administration even to the private schools in the name of socialism?


The cabinet has decided to create 16 new jobs for running a Sea Transport Office. It was the campaign commitment Mr. Oli had made. It might be something like American President Donald Trump is building a border wall along the porous southern border to stop the illegal immigrants from the south but Oli is building a river route to reach the oceans. However, Mr. Oli made a number of other campaign promises including the increment of monthly allowances to senior citizens but as Donald Trump did Mr. Oli did not care about other commitments except for the one to keep his ego.


“Now the government will have its own ship office not the paper ship as criticised by a section of people earlier,” said Minister for Communication and Information Technology Gokul Baskota also the spokesperson for the government, the news on has it. How proud the minister has been to have an office for the sea transport, which would be really materialized or not remains to be seen..


Nepalis would probably believe the minister if he had stated that Nepal was setting up a navy, which might be possible because Bay of Bengal is not very far from Nepal. Then, the Oli administration could put some fishing boats on the Bay of Bengal to fish. However, sailing on the Nepalese rivers might be a bit skeptical even though nothing is impossible provided the Oli administration has sufficient resources.


Finally, the conclusion is that the Oli administration is probably sliding downhill. It has made a good progress in misinforming the people about the state of affairs. The economic growth has been not what it could have happen. The water flow from the Melamchi River has been postponed probably indefinitely. How could the folks in the valley be prosperous and happy when the water that was almost flowing to Kathmandu in the last Dashain has been uncertain? If the administration were to move at this speed, Mr. Oli would probably not last long in office to the amusement of his rivals and opponents. I hope that it would click that Mr. Oli will understand what is happening or will happen if he is moving to the wrong direction as fast of today.


January 21, 2019

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