The ever rigid stance of the Rastriya Janata Party Nepal (RJP-N) against participation in the second phase of the local election despite assiduous efforts of the mainstream political forces to bring it on board indicates that this party is sliding towards the edge of a cliff. Anyone who is following the process of decline of this party will be shocked to see the depth of its judgemental deficiency in facing the challenges that lie ahead.
After enticing the ruling coalition to postpone the date of the second phase of the local election twice, RJP has finally taken to the path of agitation for active boycott and disruption of the election. The Terai is again beginning to be enveloped in the smog of cinders an soot emanating from burning tyres. The local people’s aspiration to celebrate election after a hiatus of 20 years is being dashed to pieces.
But the changing scenario in the Madhesh shows that the diabolical politics of the Madhesh -based parties is exacting cost from them. The division within the rank of the Joint Madheshi Front, growing unpopularity of the agitating parties and the growing enthusiasm of people towards election are having a combined effect to push the agitating forces to an unprecedented isolation.
As the whole nation braces for the second phase of election, the RJP’s move to start agitation with a view to disrupt people’s right to exercise their franchise rights has pushed them to further isolation. Its action has not only weakened the prospects for seeking solution through dialogue, it has also deepened the political polarisation further.
By opting out of the election, the RJP has lost the opportunity to obtain a fresh mandate to legitimise its demand for the amendment to the constitution. The party which considers itself the emancipator of the people of the Madhesh now runs the risk of losing trust and allegiance of the people. The enthusiasm about election which sweeps the length and breadth of the plains of the Madhesh shows that the people do not want to be taken hostage by political forces guided by their vested interest.
With its belligerent policy, the RJP has been obstructing the process of ending transition by sorting out differences through the use of tools of conflict resolution. In democracy, there are basically three ways of resolving differences. The first is to try to forge consensus through dialogue. The second method is to seek the maximum consensus, and the third is to seek broad mandate from the people through fresh elections.
The demands of the Madhesh-based parties have constantly changed over the years. In the beginning, they were asking for one Pradesh for entire Madhesh region. When the debate for and against the constitutional amendment gathered momentum, the Terai-based parties changed their demands and came down to restructuring of provincial borders separating plain areas from the hills. In democracy, all the political actors should stick to fair play. It is not possible to achieve political superiority through bullying and wanton use of violence and anarchy. The Madhesh -based political parties, especially the RJP, needs to reorient its policies and strategies. It is in existential crisis. It should stop dancing on the edge of a cliff.
Published Date : 17 July, 2017 Monday .