Thursday, December 24, 2009

Security Sector Reform in Nepal:With reference to UNSCR 1325


Krishna Hari Pushkar

1. Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325, on women, peace and security was passed unanimously on 31 October 2000. Resolution (S/RES/1325) is the first resolution ever passed by the Security Council that specifically addresses the impact of war on women, and women's contributions to conflict resolution and sustainable peace. The important role of women in the prevention and resolution of conflicts and in peace building, and stressing on the importance of their equal participation and full involvement in all efforts for the maintenance and promotion of peace and security in domestic as well as in international arena. Accordingly, 1325 is a one of the most important international roadmap that compel its all member state to consider UNSCR 1325 as guiding principle while working on security sector reform.

2. This resolution is mandatory that compels to UN as well to its all member-state to adopt essential women sensitivity approaches in entire dealings with ongoing/ post conflict or transition or peace process phases. The status of serious exclusion and ignorance of Nepalese women in pre- peace process to post conflict situation and from past security apparatus to reformed present structure of security mechanism. It illustrates pathetic ground reality. However, recently some policies efforts have been introduced in favor of 1325, but it is yet to materialize properly in meaningful and productive ways.

3. The general concept of Security Sector Reform is essentially aimed at the efficient and effective provision of state and human security within a framework of democratic governance in accordance with the will and interest of the nation. It is a continuous process but the importance of SSR may talk differently in different situation. Particularly, the SSR issues comes as a one of the most preferred agenda in post conflict situation while shifting security governance from transition towards sustainable peace. SSR also considers as a democratization process which includes transformation of institutional values, culture, and structure in accordance with contemporary needs and standard. It helps to strengthen the institutional effectiveness and forces to stepping towards better governance and develop effective mechanism to reach near the people with impression of people centric agent. It secures inclusive representation, and build favorable environment for social justice, create harmony and promote rule of law in favor of people and national interest. It focuses on the inner and outer justice, civic engagement, and works to correct impunity by using necessary reconciliation approaches. The SSR may establish the “culture of respect” towards legitimated rights of the people, specially for excluded, women and marginalized groups. It talks about the rational inclusion and meaningful participation not only the state's forces, but also non-state actors, armed groups as well as the civil society and marginalized group too. The ultimate goal of the SSR to optimizing, reengineering, and restructuring of the security sector, mostly to make it more effective and efficient in the sense of its orientation towards the citizens. The rationale SSR helps to assure peoples’ ownership over the security system. It may helpful to create sustainable peace, mutual trust, harmony and professional coalition with government, people, and security personnel for security related better productivity.

4. What is the existing position of 1325? In Nepal, most of the women and children are the victims of war and struggling for survival. They and their problems are not being handled as per the letter and spirit of UNSCR 1325. Sadly, women are excluded in peace process, women and children are ignored in post conflict concentration, excessive exclusion exists in security structure, endangered and ignored situation of conflict affected women and children are found in terrible situation and being away from the mainstreaming of post conflict affairs, poor institutionalization of women and children related qualitative and quantitative statistics, and crisis and confusion of accountability towards 1325. There are no particular or integrated authorities who are responsible to enforce 1325 properly, so the responsibility shifting problem exists in practice. Honestly writing 1325 is just limited in indoor academic discussion inside the NGOs-INGOs, except very nominal presence among governmental agencies.

5. Causes of poor implementation: Traditional-feudal social custom, male-master social grown-up, excessive women exclusion in security system and defense apparatus, poor governance and crisis of democratization, male-moderated political culture and peace process, poor integration and non-convincing and ineffective sensitization about 1325. The crisis of practicability of right based approach in public domain. The women are deprived from basic needs and majorities lives in hapless social system, societal supposal is “Security is for Male’’. Scarcity of women friendly security dealing and delivering system, lack of women and gender sensitivity skill, ominous of pro-women public awareness in peace and conflict affairs and growing gaps between theoretical and practical understanding of violence, discrimination and exclusion etc may have the great causes of existing ceremonial status of 1325. Lack of resources and continuity in policy and administrative affairs, poor commitments of stakeholders, dishonesty towards the women centric issues and intentional ignorance of women’s privileges related to 1325. Also, the poor and ineffective coordination for enforcement of 1325 and confusion over accountability among states’ institution etc are the major causes of poor implementation of 1325 in Nepal. Moreover, the internalization deficiencies among big political leaders have remained very challenging and havoc for honest implementation of 1325 in Nepal.

6. Attempts towards the 1325: Beginning of women inclusion parameters and commitment through various legal and policy tools ( In political-compulsory women representation, administrative-institutional provision (MWCSW and its wings), positive discriminations, quota, trainings, developmental-women centric development programs, budgetary- gender budget, security and other apparatus of state-special provision for recruitment and promotion and women cells etc). Introduction of privilege and immunities, reservation, quota, and positive discrimination and empowerment packages for women in governmental system, nongovernmental and corporate sector, expansion of women and gender related issues in internal and external multilateral agencies (Median, I/NGOs, civil societies, political parties etc), transformation of tradition values, attitudes and believes in favor of women and children sensitivity in accordance with the universal standard and practices. Specially, bylaw women friendly and privileged judicial, security and administrative systems have been developed with special arrangement in parliament, court, police, medical center, administration office and public prosecutes office too. Specially, balanced women representation of women in local peace committees, 1325 centric sensitization activities for high command security official, efforts to build action plan for 1325 could considered as positive efforts towards the enforcement of 1325. NGO’s efforts to marketize the 1325 among multi-stakeholders, research, intensive workshops on the issues are also found productive. The institutionalization of 1325 into various rights and humanitarian organization are also seen positives aspirations to achieve the motto of 1325.

7. Status of women in national security agencies: In Nepal, total number of Police is 56077 consisting only 2962 women police and among the number only DIG-2, SSP-1, SP-4, DSP-15, INSP-40 and rest women police officials are in junior posts. (Representation of women is 5.28%). The data presents that very low presence of women in influencing level/position in Nepal Police. In Nepal Arm Police Force; total number is 31262, among them 632 are women (Officer 13, junior officer 38 and rest are others). Representation of women in APF 2.02%. Similarly the National investigation department has less than 2% women representation. One of the most sensitive situations exists in Chief District Officer level that post is considered as chief security official at district level of Nepal government where women representation level is zero. Specially, Nepal Army has also very minimum women representation and negligible in policy influencing position except some technical areas, there is also zero representation of women in offensive field operation, search operation and also in peace keeping forces. Even in low presence of women, the women employees of security apparatus are being victims in many ways. Most of the time they feel tensed and frustrated. They have been suffering with plenty of physical and psychological violence including rape, torture, professional violence and other forms abuses in inside and outside the institution. There is no effective practices to handle women related specific grievances. The gender concern and sensitivity in national security and post conflict situation are found comparatively ignored as anticipated by 1325. Therefore, special efforts and roadmap need to develop to address 1325 while working in security sector reform of Nepal.

8. How to address 1325 in upcoming efforts of security sector reform in Nepal? There are plenty of effective tools of democratization and SSR including justified inclusion approaches for women in every level of decision making from pre-conflict to post conflict situation, issues based multi-sectorial mainstreaming, balance participation, gender sensitive policy analysis rule imposition while working on security sector reform. Special advocacy and exercises of international and international laws related to women need to enforce into practice during conflict or posting conflict situation by continuous pressure and active involvement of rights based agencies. The special women and gender friendly environment and focuses are needed to institutionalize while dealing the issues during the ongoing conflict or post conflict situation. Specially visit, observation, trainings, coaching, counseling and frequent awareness raising programs are needed to introduce among its all concerned stakeholders to adopt 1325 into inner and outer ecology of security organism. Productive integration and mainstreaming of women and children issues in political, judicial, administrate, security and development affairs need to consider seriously to achieve the goal and motto of 1325. Specially, along with the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR), the SSR is crucial to address the women concerned issues in post conflict situation of Nepal through the uses, and mobilization of various actors. Nepal is under state of confusion of accountability that who are responsible to enforce the 1325, so a certain line and staff agencies need to assign by law for implementery and supervisor power along with detail ToR authority and resources. Finally, Nepal is now in restructuring phase so the situational democratization of security related mechanism and spheres are essential to address by upcoming constitution and laws on women, peace and security concern in accordance with the letter and spirit of UNSCR 1325.

9. Finally, the UNSCR 1325 and SSR is significantly relevance to each other. So, the meaningful incorporation of 1325 into national security and defense mechanism of Nepal may only bring expected impact in favor of women during conflict or post conflict situation as expected by UNSCR 1325.

(The Mr. Pushkar is a Peace and Conflict Management Expert and Under Secretary of Government of Nepal: khpushkar@gmail.com)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Nepal: Polity for Peace


The article deals with the political dilemmas of ongoing peace and constitution building process of Nepal and it provides possible ways out of the topsy-turvydom. It highlights the contemporary affairs of Nepalese political culture. Specially, it prescribes the proficient ways to end all types of political impunity, undemocratic practices, and finally discuss the ways to bring out the off-track politics into peoples’ platform. The article also includes the potential roles and contributions of multifarious stakeholders that may help to conduct the Nepalese democratic polity and behavior towards to achieve sustainable peace, prosperity and national interest.

Nepal is peaceloving country but it does not mean the national polities support the dispositions of its nation and citizen. People want to see its land from the out of transition but politicians want to keep the land into long process of alteration. People mandates are to achieve sustainable peace and successful management of comprehensive peace accord-2006, but politicians want to achieve sustainable power and regime in government. People gave mandates its’ constitutional assembly’s representative to involve in peace and constitution building process, and to play productive role in effective restructuring of the nation but they are either not interested or disqualifies to perform its assigned parliamentary responsibilities and tasks. Beyond the rule, they keep parliament totally inoperative since long time, ignoring the people’s sovereignty and national interest. It has been strange that Nepalese polity is just roaming around the attraction of cabinet but not tramping to honest enforcement of peace process. Forlornly, there is unfortunate misguiding understanding among the parties that they defines its leaders’ supremacy as people’s supremacy, which has not yet even tested anywhere by any constitutional, political or administrative tools.

Now, the prime tasks of politicians are supposed to solely involve in management of the peace process and constitution building, but other than they have priorities their tasks in different ways to gain either individual or gang benefits. Consequently, the issues related to the management of cantonment based Maoist’s combatants, federalism, inclusions, and broader governance affairs are into limbo. Specially, the overall constitution building process is also being severely victimized due to the growing political impunity. Here impunity also includes the issue of unaccountable, irresponsible and deviated politics.

Sadly, Nepalese politics are not in the path of normal politics in similar to other world’s democratic polity. It needs to instant commute or redefine accordance with practical democratic doctrine. The homegrown Nepalese polity believes on impunity and unaccountability which has become core values and characters of existing Nepalese politics. Sorry to say, Nepal’s politics are becoming criminalized and everything is being accepted here in the name of parties’ supremacy. They have very wrong understanding that politicians are superior to law and even exempted from all moral and ethical values of politics. Unfortunately, they take it as a part of immunity, just because they have branded as “law maker”, whereas all Nepalese are found forced to be performed as blind, dumb and deaf to watch every wrongdoing of the so called lawmakers.

Honestly writing, they are not serious about peace process or constitution writing, so they often raise the issues that push overall peace building and national restructuring process into apparition. Every day, ruling parties as well as the opposition parties come with new issues that are neither addressed in their political manifestos nor described in inter-intra parties’ agreement or consensuses. Many of the political parties are irresponsible and tugging the nation into catastrophe.

Peoples are innocent and unable to do anything against the conventional Nepalese political culture that politicians are always superior. People have been suffering due to outlawed polity. Poor is being poorer, maimed are being more hurt, corruption is intensified, criminality is becoming hitch of daily life, murder, kidnap and physical auscultations have become routine incidents, people are dying for food, water and medicines, children are unattended and fighting for survivals, infrastructures are turning into tragedy, and impunity has become very common. It means nothing seems in order. Peoples say that it is because of transition, but it is not fully true. Transition does not mean bombardment on peace or brush aside people’s choice and national interest. Also, transition does not encourage political unaccountability and award discount from political responsibility. The degree could different but in any condition, rule of law, public and constitutional priorities should be kept always into priorities, which are mainly now successful management of peace process and constitutional building works.

Anyway, the democratic practices and personas cannot be apprehended in the name of transition for personal benefits or anarchical pursuits. Politicians should know that the democratic polity is meant a capacity of a democratic politicalsystem which need to respond to the preferences of its citizens, national interest and constitutional priority, specially to achieve sustainable peace, prosperity, development, and maintain respectable sovereignty and inter-intra dignity of the nation.

Observer fond Nepalese peace process is in comma, any time it can be collapsed or tuned into sadistic form of war. Also upcoming new constitution will be tossed in dubiety, if the polity of politics is not substantially changed accordance with the national need. Simultaneously, general public, civil society and professional organization have to change its role, if they really wish to correct the existing piteous political scenario of the nation. The conventional tools such as formal delegation, unnecessary bandh, memorandum, close-meetings, hello-interaction, rent seeking-seminar, and briefcase-workshop are found ineffective and useless in Nepalese case. The efforts have found failure to correct the existing ill-politician and corrupt-political system of rules. Therefore, new approaches of polity control need to introduce and practice in Nepalese scenario.

Firstly citizens of respective constituencies need to pressurize their respective representatives regularly and also need to ask to make written promises public about their role and preferences of work. Afterward they can force larders to present action plans compulsory along with the provision of regularly disseminating progress report among people in local level. It could also help people to judge the qualities of their representative during election. The system can be introduced in the initiative of local civic leaders, media person and nongovernmental organizations. In addition, voters need to watch and analyze the performance delivery status of their leader. It is now clear that voters’ silent syndrome has proved dangers for the national health and the people too, so it has to be break immediately. Peoples should put continuous pressure and extend warning in time to time, if they found in case deviated from the people preferences or extended commitment.

Secondly, the professional organization and civil society need to form a close circuit network in each level of political apparatus, to pressurize and warn the politician and political parties about their political commitments, peoples’ interest and national priority. They could put continuous pressure and force them to not deviate from their main agenda and priority, by providing continuous technical and advisory support. In addition, the professional organization and civic society can form a different watch groups to monitor and observe the activity of particular political parties and politicians with extraordinary responsibility.

Thirdly, the international community and diplomats could also play a crucial role to bring the ill-polity into the right democratic track. They could fund and provide all possible technical assistances, experiences and assistances to in the areas of voter empowerment and also to the particular party and politicians, if they required assistances to perform in particular issues or areas. Most of the Nepalese parties and its politicians are unaccountable; they do not have integrity, honesty, and commitment in their speeches and acts. So, they need many more direct-indirect expertise trainings, coaching, and counseling, tips while performing their role or stand in particular vital issues. However, a precaution is essential that Nepalese politician do not like so called open international interferences and imported ideas. Therefore, the international community or donor can use indirectly some Nepalese trained semi-political experts for the work, who could efficiently provide technical expertise and consultative support to particular leaders and party in regular basis without exposing the brand of particular donor and country. Such experts may require also extra ordinary qualities that might have broader access and closeness with respective politician, parties and top brass bureaucrats.

The Nepal based diplomats can constitute joint task forces whose main responsibility should to monitor and pressurize continuously to the particular parties and politician about their extended national and international commitments. They could use their donation’s agreement provisions as tools of pressure too. They could highlight about the Nepal’s national priority and peoples’ interest without prejudice while dialoging, negotiating and meeting with particular political parties and politicians about the issues of mutual interest and other related affairs. Besides, some negative diplomatic tools for bad-politicians may develop in symbolic manner to bar diplomatic privileges and immunities such as visa denial, non-invitation, diplomatic desolate, no-funding, no-moral support, access of denial from diplomatic community and international participation etc. may also use to control the unaccountable and undemocratic politician and parties by developing effective qualitative and quantitative parameters to create possible threat on them.

Fourthly, Of course, Nepal has also some good politicians and people in every party with ideal political background, so they also need to now unite and sacrifice for the nation. They have to be stand beyond the parties’ and individual wrongs interest, if found harmful for the national and citizens’ health. In their respective party, they have to make companion and movement against bad polity and political culture. They could pressurize respective leading groups to develop clear standard and ethical parameters for political role, duties, responsibilities and code of conduct about morale, professional and social life.

Specially, a high level independent internal powerful commission needs to constitute to monitor the legacy, legitimacy and lawful performances of political leaders. Such commission will have the rights to warn the politicians in every party, most of the politicians are very corrupt and not even transparent in many ways that have been already proved by Election Commission of Nepal, where many politicians, and political parties has not yet submitted their income-expenditure details besides its’ legal provisions. In cabinet, parliament and also in respective institutions of many institutions, where the leaders are supposed to submit their full properties detail, but they often disobey such legal provision. So, the respective authorities could develop some legal provisions that such politician parties or politicians should automatically suspended and may not be considered further illegible to participate in political process or power sharing till it complete all legal formalities. Additionally, the repeated wrongdoing may be registered and can be declare them nationally as permanent disqualification for political ineligibility. It can be also done though constitution amendments and other laws related to political election, appointment, nomination. Such wrong people should not be eligible for any public post or responsibility.

Fifthly, the culture of disqualifying the disqualified is urgent need in Nepalese scenario for protecting the qualified leaders in rational politics and polity of Nepal. The main fascinating crux of democratic polity is to honor the people’s sovereignty and supremacy at all time, commitment and honest actions towards fulfill the peoples’ interest and meaningful devotion to achieve national preferences in democratic manner, otherwise democracy will no longer sustain and will transform into “criminolocracy”.

It is really sad to illustrate the most of the Nepalese politicians are ineligible and disqualifies for politics, if we test them by using empirical norms and indicators. Nepalese democracy and politics are becoming worse and worse. Unaccountability and irresponsibility has become the major part of political cultures and it has long rooted in Nepalese polity. It is because majorities of politicians are belongs from the unqualified category, so it s time to revolt and ask politicians to redefine the social, moral, political and professional values and standard of politician and its parties. Hence, Nepalese need to put strong pressure to constitute immediately a nonpolitical experts’ constitutional high level commission, who may provide full rights and responsibility to judge and take immediate action against guilty or bad-activity or unfair-roles of the political parties and politician. The commission should assign enough judicial power to look at the rationale complains against them. Indeed, the commission should have enough authority to conduct necessary investigation, take into custody for investigation or take any necessary urgent action against the culprits, if found well-enough proofs of any wrongdoings, undemocratic, criminality, illegal or illegitimate activity or performance. The commission may provide the full judicial rights to disqualify any politicians for future political career, if enough evidences presented against. Also, some compensatory provisions may introduce if performance, decisions, or roles of particular political leaders or parties causes to hit on the personal, social, economical, or institutional losses.

Lastly, it is also a crucial time for bureaucrats to rethink about its conventional theology of impartiality, commitment, neutrality and peoples’ centric attitude with high professionalism in civil service. The bureaucrats now need to open their eyes about their legal, professional and legitimated roles. People accuse that politicians are bad because of bad-bureaucrats; they are somehow master of forged-politicians and mastermind for criminalizing the politics. The bureaucrats are also responsible in some extend to degrade the political-standards of Nepal. Therefore, civil servants and its professional organizations need to contribute to deal with the contemporary and crucial issues of political pathos. It will helpful to enforce effective implementation of comprehensive peace accord and constitution building process. It is believed that bureaucrats are closest kith and member of their kitchen cabinet, so they have enough opportunity to assist, watch, guide, and observe the politicians and political parties and to prevent from any wrongdoings. It is believes that the senior bureaucrats are often behind the scene. They design the roadmap for the huge corruption and criminal events. The politicians just perform direct leadership at the end of planning and preparations.

Therefore, it is times for all bureaucrats to contribute for its nation, national preferences, and peoples’ interest and also for the future generation. Please come all of us with honest minds and commitments, and start struggle against the corrupt and criminal politicians. Let’s be unite and stairs a fresh protest and warm them to be careful in due time, otherwise any actions may occurs against the enemy of the nation. In general understanding, bureaucrats are the major authority that can easily collected the required proofs against disqualified politicians and parties to disqualify them legally and remove permanently from Nepalese political structure; who have been fouling the politics and exploiting the nation as an octopus. Let’s starts at least cognitive movement today from ourselves to clean political contamination and contribute to establish sustainable peace, harmony, democracy and prosperity in the Nation. Let’s join our hand-in- hand and stands to contribute to the voice of neo-reform and transubstantiate the existing polluted polity into people’s centric democratic polity.

(Mr. Pushkar is a Peace and Conflict Management Expert and Under Secretary of Nepal Government, Email: khpushkar@gmail.com)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Nepal’s National Security is Under Threat

To,

1. Rt. Hon. Prime Minister

Government of Nepal

2. Hon. Home Minister,

Government of Nepal

3. Respt. Chief Secretary

Government of Nepal

4. Respt. Home Secretary

Government of Nepal

Subject: Open Letter: National Security System is under Threat”

Dear Extraordinary,

I am very sad and feel huge terror to see the functional pathos of National Investigation Department of Nepal (NIDN), which is the government’s principal intelligence agency collecting, analyzing, and managing information related to country’s internal security and related affairs. Byelaw and practice, the national spy agency NIDN and its overall functional and administrative activities are considered as one of the most secret at all time. Internationally and nationally, the secretiveness of the NIDN’s activities is most indispensable, so universally it is protected by constitution, professional Act and law related to right to information.

Dear extraordinary, the conventional and modern governance system and polity also have no rights to go beyond the universally legitimated parameter of concealment. As we all know that NIDN plays significant role to maintain effective and efficient security system, especially in terms of harmonizing internal security. It prevents from the possible threat on inter-intra national security, equally, it has huge role in balancing the Nepal related diplomatic quandaries between China and India. Also, we know the secrecy is a breath of the any intelligence institution, so no way to maintain intelligence or spy system without respecting the ethics of secrecy.

Extraordinary, I would like to draw your serious attention about the recent publicity of NIDN’s secret report on “Buddhist monasteries involvement in the Free Tibet movement and anti-China activities” that how such secret report came into media besides its huge security and secrecy system. It made me very annoyed and KO'd. You might know that such publicity can damage our bilateral diplomatic relation and could raise further tensions to deal within the neighborhoods. Similarly, I have heard that many NIDN’s secret report is being out via some dishonest officials. Some of the NIDN’s report is being misused against our national interest. Some criminals may have benefitted too. Therefore, it is urgent need for our government to find out immediately that how NIDN’s secret reports become public besides its sophisticated secret proceedings system. Please find out who is guilty and where is fracture in our system?

Extraordinary, please be serious and constitute immediately an experts’ taskforce to find out first that how such important reports came into media? Further, the culprits should be immediately removed out from the NIDN and Home Ministry’s intelligence system. I think Government needs to rethink in overall management and reengineering of NIDN institution, otherwise national security will come under serious threat and national sovereignty may push into crisis, if such thing continues. Please take necessary precautions without delay.

Therefore, as a capacity of Nepalese citizen, I would like to draw your urgent attention to concentrate on the above mentioned issue and address the problem with high priority.

Thank you very much.

Sincerely,

Krishna Hari Pushkar,

Suga-4, Mahottari, Nepal December 8, 2009

Email: khpushkar@gmail.com

(Note: Mr. Pushkar is Peace and Conflict Management Professional and Under Secretary of Government of Nepal)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Nepal’s Dual Citizenship: A Suicidal Decision?

By Krishna Hari Pushkar,

Upcoming Dual Citizenship policy will be a big threat on democracy, sovereignty, integration and harmony in polity as well as in society too. Such stochastic policy could push our nation towards serious problem, if the government introduces the policy without analyzing the potential impact. Therefore, the government should go in open referendum accordance with the spirit of interim constitution before to approve the policy of dual citizenship.

The Non Residential Nepalese (NRN) has pressurized government to approve the dual citizenship policy and now government is almost agree on it. Sadly, there are misunderstandings among the people that NRN is only the people who are rich and living in rich country. Now, it’s time to be clear about the NRN. What about the 80-90 lakhs Nepalese who are living in India? What about the 4-5 laksh Nepalese who are living in Burma? What about the 3-4 lakhs Nepalese living Bhutan? For instance, let’s exclude the NRN people who have been living in prosperous country and prosperous profession and think what will happened if the described people come in Nepal and ask to be a part of dual citizenship?

I think most of them come in Nepal and will happily try to settle in Nepal permanently since the problem in Bhutan, Burma and India (see the problems and difficulties facing by Nepalese ethnic people in Assam etc.) have become huge headache for Nepalese ethnic people. I think most of them could easily establish relationship with Nepal and will able to fulfill all the required criteria to obtain citizenship.

We should be serious and learn first about our national capacity, limitation of resources, infrastructure and other related multifarious aspects. Just approving the dual citizenship is easy job for government, but to manage and maintain policy sustainably is more complex job. I think the citizenship includes the set of duties and responsibilities equally for a nation and individual too.

What happen if the all people come and ask the state to fulfill the constitutional, fundamental and human rights? Do you think that our nation is capable now to address the issues? Do you think the dual citizenship policy will prove profitable for Nepal? Isn’t it will be an additional burden of the nation? I think it will be a big threat on democracy, sovereignty, integration and harmony in polity as well as in society too. Such stochastic policy could push our nation towards serious problems, if the government introduces the policy without analyzing the potential impact.

Is there any research and homework conducted about the potential impact of dual citizenship policy with reference to Nepalese context?

Therefore, I request all stakeholders to be serious about the issue in timely; otherwise it will prove a suicidal step for the nation and the existing nationalities of Nepal. I am not sure but in my personal opinion, the government should go in open referendum before to approve the policy of dual citizenship.

Additional justification from Krishna Hari Pushkar:

Thank you. Please do understand that there is nothing to do with the NRN law and its definition. The major issues of dual citizenship are for those Nepalese who have been living abroad and have ended the Nepalese citizenship and also for those who are willing to do the same. Friends, pro-dual citizenship companion is based in a cagey logic that provision of dual citizenship will be helpful to attract FDI or private investment in Nepal from the so called limited rich people. However, you might know about the number of rich people who can really able to invest in Nepal. I think we could just count in finger about the number for such limited people, but you will lifelong unable to count the growing number of those people who seek for dual citizenship. You must know about the ratio of the people who want to invest in Nepal and the people who just want to have dual for their individual/personal benefit. May be millions of NRNs who are living abroad (India, Burma, Bhutan etc) will settle permanently in Nepal. Therefore, why should Nepal Government and people agree to provide dual citizenship? Could you provide any empirical justification? Do you know the number of people who want really investment and to be a part of socioeconomic development? I think Nepalese people are now aware and willing to know about the fact rather than the value.

Additional justification from Mr. Krishna Hari Pushkar:

In response to your argument, I would like to clear that I did not talk about those people who are only Nepalese speaking. But, I talked about those people who are inherent Nepalese and they migrated or left Nepal few decades ago due to employment or economical reasons. I am sure that they could obtain their Nepalese citizenship accordance with laws and could present enough proofs e.g. parental properties, blood relations, old voter list, lands and malpot related receipts etc. Most of the previously described non residential Nepalese have more than enough proofs to prove that they are well eligible to get “Bansaj Nagrikata”. Therefore, it should be clear that I talked about those non-residential Nepalese who are equally eligible as the defined nonresidential Nepalese who are living in so called developed and prosperous country.


Author's Bio: Mr. Pushkar was a DAAD fellow and studied research master in peace and conflict studies in Germany. In addition, he holds an internationally honored first class master degree in public administration. He has participated in dozens of national and international trainings, seminar, and workshops programs related to governance, migration, ethnicity, social inclusion, human rights, diplomacy, peace, security and conflict management in US, Europe and Asian countries. Mr. Pushkar often writes opinion articles, reports, conduct researches and publish commentary notes on the various contemporary issues related to the areas of his expertise, specially with reference to Nepal. He has been working under the Ministry of Home Affairs/Government of Nepal and well honored as a Peace, Security and Conflict Management Professional. Mr. Pushkar actively involves and also contributes regularly to the dozens of national and international nongovernmental organizations as a capacity of peace and conflict management expert.

Nepal's Tumbling Peace

Krishna Hari Pushkar

Every successful peace process has its time bound broader strategic norms along with an estimated destination. However, Nepal's peace process has been running in a mysterious rhythm. Neither the government itself nor related stakeholders are found serious, even the estimated destination of ongoing peace process of Nepal is under dubiousness. So, the ongoing peace process seems falling down into limbo. Appallingly, all larger and smaller parties attempt to take leadership of cabinet without caring the cost. There is no more seriousness whether the cost is insurgency or wreck or disposing existing peace process. As well, the diplomatic gravity is also being observed in centripetal pose to hop-on-hop-off the cabinet rather to gearing the peace process. Also, it has largely realized the ailing role of United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) and its continuous faulty stratagem has also become one of the most controversial and balking for the path to sustainable peace.

It is seen that all internal and external peace actors are visibly performing against the ethics of peace process and bouncing beyond the edge of comprehensive peace accord. So, how can Nepal's peace process go normally in such situation towards its expected end? Forlornly, it is hapless to describe that no any single direct and indirect actors found sincere and practically committed towards the success of ongoing peace process of Nepal. If the situation continues, it won't be surprising when the moist battalions decide to return jungle or government imposes special op against ethno-political combatants. It is unfortunate that some vested politicians' declares that re-insurgency or re-warfare is held in search of peace, however it has proved blunder to impel for “breach peace for peace”.

Many concerned people self-interact with bunch of FAQs on Nepal's peace process, where they often find less hopes for expected peace while interacting with honest hearts and minds, as people can easily observe the status quo anxious of ongoing peace process. There are very limited professionals involved in Nepal's' peace process. People feel sorry to see even the dishonesty, weakness, passiveness, and regressive attitudes of branded track 1, track 2 and track 3 diplomats. It is because the drawing, design and also involved technician of peace process have proved bluntly sprawled from its required standard. One of the weakest parts of the peace process is to be deficient in essential technical foundation and spares required for maintenance and cog during the motion while implementing the action plan of peace process. Frankly writing, the existing peace process's mechanism is a crowd of vested generalist, while a successful process required more specialists related to the entire areas and issues of respective peace process.

Specially, there are some most crosscutting dimensions of Nepal's peace process including the areas of constitution writing, government and governance system, combatant integration, social inclusion, restructuring of the nation, power share and division, equitable mainstreaming, balance development and particularly the issues related to ethno-regional problems of disadvantages and deprived groups. In addition, the equation gamble of primeministership has become also a like a virus affected dos-mode where most of the politicians and parties do not accept others' leadership to address the issue of peace process. Each of them has a consecutive attitude and believes that his or her supremacy is only the option that could take leadership and deal with the issue properly, which is one of the most untoward parts of the peace process. Unfortunately, no party is ready to accept others headship, whether the peace process collapses or get betrayed.

Ultimately, the general public is a sole victim of tumbling peace process of Nepal. The tumbling peace process can be treated by using various corrective methods. Therefore, all parties must understand that they are in interim transitional phases so, they should establish democratic multi party or multi party consensus government immediately before to take any decision regarding the peace process, if they really want to have true implementation of comprehensive peace accord.

The mutually agreed pluralistic government may helpful to enforce the decisions accordance with the spirit of comprehensive peace accord. Indeed, it will also assistive to move forward the constitution building and parliamentary process in democratic ways. Moreover, Track 1, 2 and 3 parties' requires productive involvement along with civic participation in special technical committees, which should broadly focus on efficient and effective peace process implementation, monitoring and supervision affairs. Nepal is passing through most fragile situation, so the security sector reform and democratization of state and non-state forces need to keep under special priority.

Naturally, general citizens specially the disadvantages and marginalized groups are expecting the honest implementation of social inclusion policy, social justice and mainstreaming policy in entire areas of the nation including political representation, employment and developmental affairs. Now expert illustrate that PLA integration and management is one of the most complex proportions of the peace process, so the justified and legitimated norms need to be developed which can prevent from the possible explode of cantonment based combatants.

Local as well as global pressure and efforts through the diplomatic system requires for maintaining and keeping curb to the peace process within rationale borderline. In addition, Nepal is a democratic country, so the true civil supremacy should be kept in the top priority but the heightening crisis over the peace and tumbling character in the peace process, governance, and government or even in the development works has created a crucial hegemony. Therefore, to prevent from the danger the peace process should be operated by a sustainable system in balance manner, otherwise peace can be breach any time and peace process will remains infinitely in tumbling position. The state and non-state peace pundits should carefully understand that peace has its two core frequencies which are psychological and physical peace assurances that must bring simultaneously to the general public, therefore ongoing faulty Nepal's' peace process must treat clinically to confiscate the crumpling technicalities of filtering peace process.

(Mr. Pushkar is a Peace and Conflict Management Expert and works under the Ministry of Home Affairs/Government of Nepal, Email: khpushkar@gmail.com )






Author's Bio: Mr. Pushkar was a DAAD fellow and studied research master in peace and conflict studies in Germany. In addition, he holds an internationally honored first class master degree in public administration. He has participated in dozens of national and international trainings, seminar, and workshops programs related to governance, migration, ethnicity, social inclusion, human rights, diplomacy, peace, security and conflict management in US, Europe and Asian countries. Mr. Pushkar often writes opinion articles, reports, conduct researches and publish commentary notes on the various contemporary issues related to the areas of his expertise, specially with reference to Nepal. He has been working under the Ministry of Home Affairs/Government of Nepal and well honored as a Peace, Security and Conflict Management Professional. Mr. Pushkar actively involves and also contributes regularly to the dozens of national and international nongovernmental organizations as a capacity of peace and conflict management expert.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Nepal’s Special Security Plan: Political Stunt?

Krishna Hari Pushkar

Nepal is a one of the most leading domicile of many ethno-political insurgents. Since longtime, the country has lost its normalcy of law and order, good governance, civil supremacy, and democratic practices due to fast growing ratio of institutional and private criminal and their rebellion activities. Sadly, the country is terrorized and under control of ochlocracy. Neighboring countries both India and China are fed up, they consider Nepal as a transit hub of ethno-pharisaic terrorist and regressive elements who want their disintegration, and has nabbed the peace and prosperity of their nations. India accuses that Nepal is a center for anti-Indian terrorist and insurgents who use Nepal as it’s’ rehearsal center. Similarly, the China also believes that Nepal has become a nucleus for the anti-China forces, whose aims is to disintegrate China and separate the Tibet from China. Besides, Bhutan also accused Nepal, as a principle sources that generate Bhutan centric insurgents who have spread revolutions for massive sociopolitical change.

Sadly, a recently released index from Foreign Policy depicted Nepal as 25th most likely nation to become a failed state, out of the sixty most vulnerable countries. The group found that conditions in Nepal are more disturbing than in Lebanon, Burkina Faso and Colombia. Nepal has got bed image internationally and internally due to poor security management system, so the M. K. Nepal headed government wants to repair the security sector and willing to achieve its normalcy. People and international community too are keeping continuous pressure to the government to secure duly public lives, liberty, and properties. People want to live in peace, prosperity and harmonious environment. They are unable to see more violence, criminalities and abuses of human rights. They do not want to be again a victim of warfare and have no more stamina to suffer with crude humanitarian crisis. The public want full assurances of physical and psychological security from government in entire part of the nation; people seek to see quick improvement in existing security mechanism and asking government to come with effective special security plan and strategy. In this context, the UML led cabinet has recently designed and enforced a government-claimed strategic security plan called Special Security Plan (SSP) which is highly criticized by regional and ethnic political forces. However, the productivity of the SSP is yet to examine.

The government claims that special security plan aimed to improving the deteriorated law and order situation across country. It is said that the main objective of the plan is to control anarchy, promote human rights and end impunity. Basically, the Home Minister describes, the SSP focuses in five areas including controlling the road blockades besides curbing organized and serious types of crime. It will take up special security measures for Kathmandu Valley, tangible improvement in the security situation of the Tarai especially in the eastern and mid-western regions where scores of armed groups have posed a threat to law and order in the southern plains bordering India. It proposes to effectively mobilize the three security agencies - Nepal Police, Armed Police Force and National Investigation Department- under a unified command. Moreover, ensuring essential service and nabbing criminals are the core tasks. The plan aims to strictly prohibit the closing of public offices and educational institutions. The plan claims that the government will deploy well-equipped security personnel with adequate arms and coordinate with security staff deployed in various areas of the border. The plan aims to provide security for those targeted by criminals. To take special care of the crime-prone and to massively mobilize security personnel are also strategies under the plan. To increase the productiveness of the plan, the security agencies will manage security forces with weapons to patrol on motorbikes, security picketing twenty four hours, no closure of offices, blockade of roads and traffic, emergency frisking and searches, cordon and search in suspect areas. The special security squad comprises at least twenty Nepal Police and thirty Armed Police Force personnel. The special security team has been given the authority to carry out raids in suspicious places, security checks in different parts of the district with the help of local police and can also hold suspicious persons in their custody for investigation purposes. The team would also arrange security for high-level government officials and political party leaders.

The above described plan is reader friendly and written in systematic order as also experienced during the regime of previous government. However, people do not see any new invention in recently introduced special security plan. There is nothing new. All the exaggerated provisions are made continuous in law since years, so it is not more than Old wine in new Bottle”. The plan also sounds like the same provision which was introduced during the Gyanendra’s autocratic regime, where the King Gyanendra had imposed the special security plan to control the Maoist activities and democratic movement against his direct executive rule. Moreover, the experts illustrate that it is just a political stunt rather than a no-hit plan that provides an effective and efficient security system as developed security culture has. The plan is lacking the major characters that are supposed to be deal with the post-conflict situation and even during the ongoing insurgency.

Indeed, the country is passing through the fragile situation, law and order is limited in constabulary only. The criminalities and mutiny have reached at climax, though all governmental efforts of improvement have been found zilch. Since early years, all the government used their political stunt to win the heart and mind of people that, though it is poignant that public are being more victimized and situation is worsening more and more. People do not see any tangible improvement or positive changes, except the mounting news and speeches in Medias. The drawing and design of SSP is faulty and being enforced without needy homework. The SSP suffers with eleventh hour syndrome which is most unfortunate, so how can people expect a successful implementation of SSP. Actually, the plan has clearly shown that government has not yet understands the true nature of security needs. The Government should understand that security is not only a physical presence and beefed up activities of security personnel, rather it requires true self-build physical and psychological security assurances that people should feel secured in stress-free manner by their hearts and minds.

The security plan cannot be enforced effectively and efficiently till it gets broader public support, legitimacy and peoples’ participation. Further, most important part is enough research based “implementable technical preparation”. It demands essential reform and reengineering in legal, personnel, operational, organizational, physical, functional, resources and administrative areas are also essential before to enforce such plan, however the SSP lacks all these things except the verbal stunt and well written story. There are not yet any substantial changes and essential step found in restructuring in laws, resources, and technological enhancement related to local administration, police and security, Intelligence, public service delivery and other related approach of Insurgency management, crime control, market regulation, high way management, drug abuse control, smuggling and boarder security control, kidnapping and robbery control etc.

The Chief Districts Officers led district security committees are the principal mechanism at ground level to enforce the SSP, though the CDOs are popularized like a most superior powerful local authority, without having expertise, resources and controlling power. They are similar like a hand bended Army Fighting in War without Arm and Weapons”. Also the existing defined security professional of unified command are incapable to deliver the SSP, if they are not empowered and updated properly accordance with the need of the national and strategy of the SSP. The huge lapses in coordination among the security agencies are found a major dearth of SSP. The SSP has assigned crucial role and responsibilities of Regional Administrators and CDOs, but most of the positions are either vacant or operated by juniors that create the issues of poor coordination, order disobeying, seniority complex, inter-intra organizational conflicts, responsibility shifting, and many more problems during implementation of pre to post phase of operation and management of the SSP.

Furthermore, the SSP has no any technical foundation. It has absence of the proper involvement of security management experts. Most of security related planners and professional are untrained, generalist and suffering with traditional mentalities. The performances of such officials are really questionable. There is no any special mechanism and indicators that could figure out the capabilities of their doings. The existing introduced pathetic ruling cultural concept is like “Our People is good People” not “Good People is Our People”, whether whatever the consequences comes, it does not matter for our policy makers and politicians. Thus the pre to post operations e.g. appointment, transfer and promotion of security related officers are being on the basis of chakri-chaplusi, and bhan-sun, that how government can expects a good productivity from the SSP without hammering the vicious problem of exiting security system.

Most of the security agencies are in crisis of resources, physical facilities and technological access. However the so-called SSP didn’t address the issue in practical matter. Furthermore, the provisions of career development, morale and motivation enhancement of security personnel’s are too low. Grievances, frustration and unwanted pressures, interferences and disturbances are too high in field, but the SSP has not analyzed the issue during the preparation of its concept, which has become now a blunder and felt as limit of the SSP into paper and verbal speech. Writing honestly, people do not feel any changes and improvement in ground level. The liveliest proofs are that even the president, prime minister, senior political leaders and ministers are not being able to walk freely or to attend any public program in free and fair manner. Most of them are getting often disturbed and has to face rebellion reaction, even after the enforcement of the SSP. The plan is not being implemented in Tarai as well as in many ethnic dominated regions including Madhes, Limbuban, Tharuban etc. because it has no any public legitimacy. The program does not govern any schemes for public participation, so it will become totally failure in the ethnic and communal regions. Minor and disadvantages ethnic people have accused that the SSP enforced by elite-ethnic dominated government just because to encounter and suppress to the minor-ethnic activists who are fighting for their ethnic rights, freedoms and inclusive representations against the continuous hegemony.

The free and independent movement and operation of national highway is also a part of the target which seems bit successful because the road blockage, robbery and dacoit’s influence in public transpiration seen somehow controlled after implementation of the SSP, it is because the arm police forces are deployed throughout the highway and also making individual patrolling guard inside the each public transportation, but the way seems not sustainable since the cost of such stagey is huge which cannot be continuous affordable by our nation. In addition, the market regulation is also a major target of the plan but black marketing, irregular price hiking, and artificial shortage of public goods and services, qualities degrading activities are observed continuous and has seen no any upbeat affect of SSP. One of the weakest points is coordination among intra and inter-agencies; the SSP does not offer any specific approaches, tools and techniques that help authorities to build intra organizational coordination for synergy effort.

A study found that Nepalese security system cannot be improved without restructuring and democratizing the security mechanism in professional way. Basically, the district level security system is ineffective because they do not have even minimum access and facilities for minimum resources, technologies, trained and skilled personnel’s and strong enough approaches for horizontal and vertical coordination that requires for any well organized security management functions. Besides, public trust over the government and local security mechanism is a most essential phenomenon which can be developed through civic engagement and justifiable inclusive participation approaches. The success of any security related special plan requires at least minimum common consensus in central as well as in local level among the all stake holders, before to enforce into practice since a nominal dissatisfaction or frustration by a stake holder may cause to failure or infectivity of plan. Particularly, in the SSP case, Regional Administrator and CDO requires more justifiable role, authority and resources and controlling power over the entire related agencies accordance with the spirit of civil supremacy. The effective management and mutual cooperation of track 1 (governmental agencies), track 2(NGOs CBOs, Civil Society etc) and track 3 actors (respective people, society, ethnic groups, community people) requires to administer properly the SSP.

The government also needs to work in identifying the special justifiable indicators that can clearly distinct between the political and criminal activities. The local security systems are in saver confusion to know political activities and criminal activities. It is because most of the Nepalese political leaders define the criminal and political activities in their own way. The funny thing is if “A” group or party halt highways and burn few vehicles that means for the party or group as democratic practices but if the “B” group or party does the same thing than others including government meant it as terrorist or a part of criminal activities. So, there is clear distinction required by laws & legitimate consensus to identify that how the security forces need to deal with such activity. The dual standard needs to be end instantly.

The market regulation has become a huge headache for nation, so the government requires immediate action to constitute a powerful joint (Track-1-2 & 3 actors) supervisory mechanism in local, regional and central level that should be handled and operated by a constitutional commission, otherwise the issues of market regulation may limit in political stunt and people will have to victimize continuously. Additionally, the passiveness, silence and infectivity of central level authorities including the Cabinet, Ministry of Home Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Finance Ministry, and Ministry of Local Administration etc are also added extra burden to defeat the SSP, because they are not serious and sincere even to consider the urgent and sensitive reports and requests that comes day by day through the channel of district security committees. Therefore, the National Security Council or a constitutional committee should play a crucial role to evaluate, monitor and correct the passiveness, silences, ignorance, and ineffectiveness of the respective central agencies. The national as well as local level authorities are suffering with serious “Responsibility Shifting Syndrome”. In Nepalese scenario “Responsibility Shifting” a long-rooted amusement found continues in the central level authority who often accused to the local level and vice-versa for any wrong things and doings in security affairs. It is pity to mention that there is no culture of candid accountability bearing in entire governmental agencies and authorities of Nepal. One agency accused to other for deteriorating security situation. All concerned agencies are equally responsible but it is never accepted by any responsible authorities. Therefore, the honest and practical commitment along with well managed timely strategic action in ground level required for successful implementation of the SSP, otherwise it will be proved similar pirates version of the SSP that was also previously experienced during the past regimes.

(An independent commentary on recently introduced the Special Security Plan (SSP) of Nepal. It is written by Mr. Pushkar, who is a former DAAD fellow and studied research master in peace and conflict studies in Germany. In addition, he holds an internationally honored first class master degree in public administration. He has participated in dozens of national and international trainings, seminar, and workshops programs related to peace, security and conflict management in US, Europe and Asian countries. Mr. Pushkar often writes opinion articles, reports, conduct researches and publish commentary notes on the various contemporary issues related to peace, conflict, human rights, diplomacy, security and governance affairs of Nepal. He has been working under the Ministry of Home Affairs/Government of Nepal and well honored as a Peace, Security and Conflict Management Professional, E-mail; khpushkar@gmail.com)

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Diplomacy for Visa Lust?

By Krishna Hari Pushkar

Nepal's diplomatic dexterity is a largely discussed and experienced background for its hapless behavior. Global as well as Nepalese eyes are often found itching while viewing the contradictions of our diplomacy. The Public have difficulties seeing any positive changes in diplomatic disposition, or even any changes at all, except changes of diplomats and their vested interests. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Embassies, Consulates and its employees always claim outstanding performance, however the general public are left disappointed.

Peoples read, and watch huge lexis, and click on the various Media, only to be told that Nepal's diplomats are smart, or that they are intensively working to build effective and efficient multilateral and bilateral relationship, to achieve prosperous cooperation, and to fulfill national desires. The diplomatic advocates cite rumors through channels of their own of high performance. However, the realities are atrocious.

Now the public has come to realize that these claims are made just to enjoy diplomatic privilege and immunities, to get appointments, promotions, to remain in charming places, and just to popularize themselves for further career advancement.

As an example, the Nepalese feel difficulties while applying for a visa. It doesn't matter whether a Nepalese is applying for an American, German, British, Chinese, Nigerian, Somalian, Burmese or Bhutanese visa. Especially developed countries exploit the Nepalese visa applicant. Sadly, there are many cases where even the visa holding Nepalese is refused entry, and is expelled, without any justification.

Many countries have already imposed strict visa limits to Nepalese citizens, who had been previously granting either gratis or on-rival visas for decades.

Moreover, the Nepalese have to face another horrible financial exploitation by dozens of world powers. They collect millions of dollars in the name of nonrefundable application fees without ever issuing visas. In Nepal, most of the Nepal-based embassies, consulates, and also India-based missions, whose jurisdiction is to handle Nepalese visas, are profiting from the application fees/administrative costs. They provide a large portion of development aid from the same money that Nepalese applicants paid them in the name of visa application and other administrative fees.
Previously, even many European countries had been issuing on-arrival visas for Nepalese, some developed countries were offering free visas, and some were offering even visa waiver options for Nepalese. Now all these previously enjoyed privileges have banned for Nepalese, although Nepal has been still offering same facilities for these nations as they had in former times. Isn't it unfair?

Now Nepalese are having a very hard time facing the visa process. The radical visa system is against the norms of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. However, the non-granting nations' thought is that it is a great tool to control foreign migration or to intervene in particular developing nations. They believe that manipulating the visa is a great tool to uphold their national interests and also to enforce the public diplomacy in respective countries. They believe it is essential for security, but that does not mean only physical security, but also socioeconomic security, as per the wish of their people and governments.

Experts claim that such types of visa policy may be considered as "Neo-Nazi Visa Syndrome (NNVS)." This policy promotes discrimination, segregation, and ultimately swells the gap between poor and rich. The radical NNVS has been found to promote terrorism. Such visa strategy fuels anger against the developed and developing world. People have committed suicide, due to the hopelessness of continuous visa refusal. Many people have committed serious crimes and have gone bankrupt while trying to get visas. Media reports prove that many foreigners from developed world are often assaulted while traveling in the underdeveloped world due to the visa frustration. In addition, such visa tension has become now a greater source of corruption in many part of the world. It increases illegality, social crimes (paper marriage, divorce, illegal migration, unlawful asylum, family disconnect, domestic and private violence etc) and has left many people with mental disorders across the world. People commit many crimes, and engage in corruption, manipulation, frustration, fakes, mafias and illegal mechanisms either to obtain the visa or to deal with the intricacies of visas.

The visa is a one of the most basic issues of any people who wish to travel abroad. Also, the visa is a principle indicator to know a nation's diplomatic strength and the status of their mutual relations. Observers have found that Nepal's diplomacy is one of the poorest in the world. The general public has to suffer and they feel ashamed of their national diplomatic capabilities while trying to obtain visas for the intended nation, especially for the developed countries (US, UK, Japan, Australia, Germany, Switzerland, France, etc). The diplomatic leaders and top level elite people do not concern themselves about such matters because they hold privileged passports and have access to a discounted visa-obtaining process. Undeniably, it is unfair and an injustice to general citizens. It is surprising to see that there is no evidence yet towards resolving the issue by any Nepalese authorities. The issue was also brought to the attention of the respective bureaucrats of Nepal. They absolutely denied any previous or future plans to address the national anguish, yet shamefully accepted their mistakes. During the study it was also found that no any diplomats or any leaders have forwarded such concerns with any visa imposing governments and authorities as of now. The visa problem for Nepalese has gone beyond tolerance, though it is not yet our national diplomatic priority. Isn't it bizarre?

The question has emerged over the dignity and sovereignty of Nepal. So it is time to pressure our diplomats and political leaders to bring the issues to the global diplomatic arena - that Nepalese also must get easy visa access in accordance with approved and general procedures. An If No visa, then No fee policy should be adopted. Our diplomats must try to use their best efforts to pressure the international community to provide on-arrival short visas. If all the diplomatic efforts fail then maybe the Nepal Government should also impose at least an equal policy and procedure for those nations who give us a hard time.

Of course, the visa imposing nations may argue that simplified visa provisions may cause growing illegal migration, or argue that Nepalese may enter or will stay illegally in developed countries, and this could be a threat on their national security. These arguments may be true, however they are not enough to discriminate or impede a Nepalese from a duly requested visa.

Experts describe many ways to address aforementioned problems and to introduce an efficient and relevant visa policy. The Government of Nepal and respective countries may develop together a joint computerized system along with effective administrative, security, and economical strategy to control and prevent possible threats and crimes.
The Nepalese people do not have any more patience to suffer such dictatorial, insulting and inhuman visa policies. The Nepal Government as well as concerned diplomatic missions and its Government should rethink the visa policy. Everyone should know that Nepalese citizens rank lowest in the global crime involvement index (criminality, illegal stays, and violating the rules and regulation etc. of any visa-imposing countries). The majority of Nepalese have good social, moral, professional and ethical characters wherever they are living. However, it is hard to understand why Nepalese have to face up to such a hard time to obtain visas. Other countries, whose citizens are in the upper ranks in crime index, in comparison to Nepalese, get easy access to visas.

Hence, it is the responsibility of Nepal's Government, as well as of the international community to analyze the unlawful and inhumane visa situation and to fulfill the visa needs of Nepal. Why are mainly Nepalese being discriminated against and exploited? Why are powerful nations violating the norms of the universal declaration of human rights by refusing genuine visa applications and banning the freedom of movement? Often, Nepalese are barred from family reunions, advanced study abroad, research and development, business, medical treatment, employment, tourism and more, due to immense visa refusals. Why Nepalese are being excluded from global opportunity? Why do the developed, powerful, nations consider that a poor country has no human rights, as developed countries have? All concerned authorities should know that they must respect the norms of universal human rights and practice dignified diplomatic norms. Freedom of movement, human dignity, equality, individual sovereignty and mutual respect should not be diminished due to visa or diplomatic despotism. The Government of Nepal should undertake an urgent initiative to resolve the issue properly, otherwise the day will come where on the one hand Nepalese people are totally blocked from international access, and on the other hand, international communities and foreign countries have to face multiple disturbances.

(Mr. Pushkar is a Peace, Security and Conflict Management professional and works under the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of Nepal, E-mail: khpushkar@gmail.com)

Published link:

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Diplomacy-for-Visa-Lust-by-Krishna-Hari-Pushk-090808-616.html

http://www.monitor.upeace.org/innerpg.cfm?id_article=640

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