Nepal Democracy Hanging In The Balance

Nepal’s Democracy Hanging In The Balance

Nepal Prime Minister Khadga Prasad Sharma Oli dissolved Parliament last December terming his move to go for the early election is to seek a stable government and strengthening Nepal.

Addressed a massive public rally on Friday, Oli said

I dissolved the House because I was not allowed to work, and now it is in the hands of the people who want to rule.

Many protests, certain political leaders, activists and retired army officials have demanded that

the army should intervene to prevent the situation drifting towards chaos.

Answering such speculations, Oli said

There is no chance of a return of the monarchy,

Nepal was ruled by a monarch until 12 years ago. Nepal’s democracy has experienced many trials and travails over the past 2 decades.

The unilateral decision to dissolve the Parliament is a result of the long-simmering row within the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP).

Also, read | Military Coup In Myanmar (Burma)

But one of the worrying factors is that on Feb 3, 2021, Oli has taken control over key constitutional bodies that are supposed to serve as checks and balances to the government. This has raised doubts about free and fair elections slated for April 30 and May 10.

But in 1990, democracy was established. Unfortunately, in 1996, it was challenged by a Maoist insurgency. Lastly, Nepali king ousted the democratic government in a royal coup in 2005.

Finally, in 2015, Nepal promulgated a controversial new constitution which adopted secularism and federalism.

Because of Oli’s decisions, NCP party itself went into crisis pushing the coalition government into doldrums which stepped towards instability. The NCP split in two. December 20, 2020, some of his own party’s NCP legislators sought an emergency session of Parliament to hold a vote of no-confidence against Oli. Instead of facing it, Oli dissolved the parliament unilaterally. However, his decision was challenged in the Supreme Court and the decision is pending.

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