Rudra Sharma

Members and supporters of Nepali Congress in US seem that they have not internalized enough democratic values even if they are in this democratic land United States of America where we can see the best practiced democracy in the world. The organization of Nepali Congress supporters in US, Nepali Jansamparka Samiti (Nepali Liaison Committee) is now divided into two or there factions and they are very smart to blame each other despite the plight of the mother party in Nepal. Nepali Congress is now in difficult situation as the communists are ruling the nation under the posture as if the communists themselves are ‘democrats’.

It is the culture of congress people to be in different groups within a party and this is also a symbol of freedom in a democratic party providing freedom to each members to agree to disagree within the party. But, the Congressmen/women in US have crossed this limitation. It seems that some of the people take their position more seriously than the unity of the fractured Nepali Janasamparka Samiti (NJS). As they are in US, they should have learn t a lesson from the tolerance and political maturity demonstrated between and among the political parties in US. I like to draw their attention in the following instances –

The following is an extract from the speech of presidential candidate from Republican Party Mr. Johan McCain delivered by him in the election night party on November 4, 2008.

A little while ago, I had an honor of congratulating Mr. Barrack Obama for being elected president of the country that we both love.

However, the crowd which was pretty hostile to the democratic campaign did not accept that very generous speech and wording of Mr. McCain. Till that moment, even media had not declared Obama as president-elect and only presumptions were making rounds. Hue and cries began in the crowd and many of them were weeping as they thought the nation would not continue to prosper under the leadership of a ‘African-American’ Barrak Obama. But, McCain controlled the crowd sympathetically and convinced them that it was a democratic process and everyone must surrender to the verdict of the people.
I don’t think that Congress people in Kathmandu and US do not understand the democratic values as John McCain does and I also don’t think that they do not like to practice democracy in the manner people do in US politics. They do like it. But, vested interested comes there in between. ‘All congress supporters want to see only one NJS in US but some of them want to have their bigger hand in and after the unification of the two factions’. That’s all. This is the root of the problem. This is problem No. 1. But, this problem No. 1 has generated another problem as it gives space for Kathmandu to play within it. ‘Kathmandu plays or Kathmandu is made to play in the space created out of problem No. 1’ is problem No. 2. Both problem No.1 and problem No. 2 have jointly generated some problems like determining which of the faction is legitimate one? So, ‘determining the legitimacy of the factions’ is problem No. 3. These are the three basic problems for the unification of NJS.

I can suggest some solutions for the problems. If there had not been problem No. 1, there would not have been problem No. 2 and there would be no question of being problem No. 3. So, it is better to focus on problem No.1 and solve it spontaneously for the sake of strengthening democracy in Nepal and for the sake of Congressmen in US. If people like to solve the problems in this way, I can tell you its process too. For this, people from both factions need to gather together and start dialogue. If they need mediator, they can find it. I also offer voluntarily my service to mediate them. By the way, I am a trained and certified mediator and have carried out mediations in the Supreme Court of Nepal.

However, it seems that problem No.1 and problem No. 2 are vastly integrated and it is difficult to separate them. Thus, problem No. 1 and problem No. 2 should be solved simultaneously. Sometimes it looks like that problem No. 1 can be solved easily or automatically if problem No.2 is solved. It is an unnatural and unhealthy reality. Because, everybody knows that it is not Kathmandu which first established its branch or sister organization here in US. It is the people in New York and all over US who fought in US for democracy in Nepal against the king’s coup, and later, Kathmandu noticed it and said, “Hey! Nice boy, common on in, you are my child, my own child and I love you.” Now, Kathmandu loves the child more than necessary, though, Kathmandu is still unable or unwilling to blend the fractured child. Annanda Bista led in New York the movement for democracy in Nepal against king’s coup and Surendra Devkota established himself as the legal owner of the movement as he could legally register the JNS before Annanda Bista could do it. This was the beginning of the separation and the separation began probably before the birth of the NJS.

I can suggest a process to solve the problem No. 2 also. Kathmandu should first fix a date for an election comprising of both factions for the purpose of electing an apex body of NJS and thereby appoint/send an all powerful representative to hold an election of the NJS. S/he will be appointed duly by Kathmandu and will be conferred with full power to accomplish the election. There should be a reasonable scrutiny to distribute the membership of NJS and arrangements should be made that all members of NJS from all over US can vote even electronically or by mail. There goes the democratic process and whoever wins will become the leader of NJS. This is pure and simple. If Kathmandu wants, it can do it today or tomorrow or anytime. If Kathmandu does not do it or does not want it, it would mean that Kathamndu will still want to continue to play in the space created out of problem No. 1.

Then, comes problem No. 3. It is a dependent problem, though. It does not have a reverse gear like problem No. 2. I mean, it hardly makes any effect if it is solved without solving Problem No. 1 and Problem No. 2. In the other way, it will be automatically solved if problem No 1 or Problem No. 2 or both of them are solved. In our Nepali culture, a child is a child and deserves equal status in society and is entitled equal rights even if it is an illegitimate child. Therefore, we need not worry about problem No. 3 rather we need to really worry about problem No. 1 and Problem No. 2.

This being the case, Nepali Congress supporters should solve these problems as soon as possible so that we can spend the squabbling time for some fruitful ventures like strengthening democracy in Nepal.

Rudra Sharma , Advocate (Nepal), LL.M ( McGeorge, California) He can be reached at rudralawyer@gmail.com

DISCLAIMER: ANLUS does not represent the author’s view.