Poverty in Nepal: Maoists better focus on real issues
Nepal’s Maoist Prime Minister Prachanda has, perhaps for the first time, acknowledged that his party’s mission for political transformation has been completed with the country’s transfer from monarchy to republic. Prachanda, while inaugurating a Charity Hospital donated by a Nepali millionaire from Russia, Dr. Upendra Mahato, asked the Non-Resident Nepalis (NRNs) to support the government’s efforts for “economic revolution” by investing in the country.
Similarly, Maoist Finance Minister Dr. Baburam Bhattarai, contrary to his party’s objective of establishing a single party rule of the “proletariats”, has observed during his visit in the US that, “no other system except the multi-party democracy” can guarantee political stability in Nepal. Dr. Bhattarai’s “democratic” remarks came after the US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher made it clear that his country was in the mood of “watching” Maoist behavior for some more time before removing the Maoists from Terror Watch list.
The World Bank too put the conditions of watching Maoist policies and performance regarding free trade and corruption control, before releasing any budgetary support to the Nepal government.
However, the Maoists are facing increasing resistance back home. The central committee meeting of the second largest party in the Maoist-led coalition government, the United Marxist-Leninist (UML) Party has accused the Maoists of heading toward a “single party despotic rule with ultra-leftist digressions”. The third largest party in the government, the MJF, has already condemned Prachanda’s call of adopting “new model of democracy” as authoritarian intentions.
Maoist hardliners who fear their party of losing “revolutionary zeal” must understand that during a time when the richest economies are battling against their worst economic crisis, the Maoist-led government can not fulfill its budgetary promises without foreign investments. Past experience shows that even the domestic capital has a tendency of “flying” to India and elsewhere during the unstable political climate in Nepal.
At a time, when inflation in Nepal has already crossed 13 percent, it’d be in the interest of the Maoists themselves if they focused on economic agenda, and, at least for the time being, forget their “revolutionary” political rhetoric.
The Maoist Mecca-land China’s experimentations prove that poverty alleviation and economic transformation through foreign investment requires a more pragmatic rather than dogmatic approach.