Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli on August 20 conducted an all-party conference which had not held in the past three years.
Oli’s co-chair in the Nepal Communist Party (NCP), Pushpa Kamal Dahal, Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba, Chairpersons of the Samajbadi Party, Nepal Baburam Bhattarai and Upendra Yadav, leaders of the Rashtriya Janata Party, Nepal Mahantha Thakur and Rajkishor Yadav attended the meeting. The prime minister then asked everyone to join to safeguard the national democratic-republican set-up, stating that large warnings to the operation were emerging.
All the leaders seemed to be on the same page, by most of them attesting to the truth that they should fight unitedly on forces that are trying to steal away the country’s hard-won political profits.
Though, it came as a wonder as to why the administrative head of the most powerful government in decades was advising of threats on federalism.
As then, Dahal, at various public gatherings, has repeatedly stated the same thing, threatening of approaching danger to the prevailing political system.
“Within three-to-four years of the new constitution, some elements questioning the change are trying to come forward in different ways,” Dahal state on Thursday.
He added, “Therefore, it is essential for all political parties and leaders to stand together.”
Political analysts, still, are suspicious of Dahal and Oli’s advice, as they do not recognize any immediate threat to the current political rule and that some opposition to each system or government is a common event in any democratic nation.
“I don’t think there is any force active today that intends to—or that will be able to —overthrow the existing political system,” stated Rajendra Maharjan, a columnist and political commentator.
He said, “If the ruling party leaders are hinting at Netra Bikram Chand’s party or pro-monarchists, they are both too weak forces.”
Ever since King Gyanendra Shah moved down in 2008, some parts, including Kamal Thapa’s Rashtriya Prajatantra Party, have been changing for the reinstatement of the government. And Netra Bikram Chand’s Communist Party of Nepal, an offspring of Dahal’s Maoist party, has been implicated in occasional incidents of violence.
The deadliest act of force the Chand party performed was in February when an explosion killed one person and injured two others in the Capital.
“There is no other forceful violent activity or movement that poses a danger to the existing system,” stated Maharjan.
In several speeches, Dahal has announced warnings to the former king, without presenting any real evidence, that Gyanendra Shah should stop dreaming and that he would be expelled from Nagarjun. Since leaving Narayanhiti Palace, the government has provided the Nagarjun Palace for Shah’s residence.
On Chand, Dahal usually seems confident that his one-time associate will join mainstream politics. The government has also stated that it is open to talks with Chand, even though it has revealed the party a criminal outfit and banned its activities.
Political observers and leaders tell the ruling party leaders could be starting around possible warnings to divert attention off from the government’s negligence to transfer on its promises.
“Some of the former king’s activities and statements from his supporters could have stoked suspicion among ruling party leaders. Maybe they are concerned about whether external forces are at play,” stated Jhalak Subedi, an analyst.
As per Subedi, people’s violence, most evident in Kathmandu’s mass protests on the Guthi Bill, could have scared governing party leaders. “But, politically, I don’t see any threat to the existing system,” stated Subedi.
Bishwo Bhakta Dulal, a former Maoist leader, imitated Subedi and stated that also if there was any such warning then the majority government could deal with it.
“There is no threat as such and if there is any, the ruling party leaders and the government should identify and deal with it, rather than repeating that there is a threat without identifying what it is,” stated Dulal.
“Some [people] are talking about Hinduism and the monarchy. Leaders might be trying to send a message to the public that there should be no confusion over the major contents of the constitution,” stated Ghanshyam Bhusal, a Standing Committee.
“The leaders are trying to say they are together and committed to constitutional provisions,” he added.
Political analysts, though, tell that statements addressing oblique references to unidentified forces are not unique to Nepali leaders, and when it comes to communist parties, tilting at windmills is among their signature characteristics.
“Most rulers share a unique behaviour—instilling fear among the people when they are in trouble,” stated Maharjan.
He added, “What the ruling party leaders are saying could be a strategy, as they want some sort of face-saving after failing to deliver on their promises.”