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K. Thapa: Why Democracy did not Work in Nepal

Why Democracy did not Work in Nepal?

Dr. Khagendra Thapa

Democracy, as devised and practiced in the developed countries of Western Europe and North America, has not been successfully implemented anywhere else in the world. India is the only country outside the above regions, which has stuck to democracy for over 50 years, and has not done very well. The factors such as high per capita income, high literacy rate, and high employment rate that exist both in North America, Japan and Western Europe do not exist anywhere else except perhaps in Singapore.

Poorer countries such as Nepal and many others, which have introduced democracy, have sunk into a vicious circle of corruption, injustice, inequitable distribution of wealth and resources. Despite of the existence of all these evils in the democratic system of government, Western countries keep insisting on one-size-fits-all type of political system irrespective of the cultural and historical background of the country, level of education of the people, level of poverty in the country, its physical location, and habits and customs of the people. Country after country and region after region has failed to deliver good life as promised by those who profess democracy.

It is time for these countries to wake up from the dreams of democracy and face the reality. From the bitter experiences of the people with an elected corrupt government, one can conclude that democracy cannot be made to work in a country, which has a low literacy rate, high unemployment rate, and majority of the people lives in extreme poverty. Therefore, it is suggested that these countries quit democracy and practice meritocracy.

Social and Economic Problems in the Country

The second experiment with democracy has badly failed in Nepal . The political parties have completely destroyed the country. Instead of bringing unity and harmony among people they have brought division and discord. Instead of promoting high moral and ethical values, those who are ruling the country have engaged in highly immoral, unethical, corrupt, and outright criminal activities. Instead of improving the financial condition of the country, they have looted the people emptied the national treasury. The behavior of the political parties has been reckless, irresponsible, unaccountable, and simply unacceptable for the law-abiding, honest, decent, and hard-working people of Nepal.

Foreign Loan

The multiparty government has taken millions of dollars in foreign loan and has pocketed the money. They have not done anything of significance in the country. The country is deep in debt. The shameless fellows who pocketed the money are now asking international agencies such as the World Bank to forgive the loan they have abused.

Foreign Policy

They do not have a coherent and consistent foreign policy. They have failed to solve the problem of Bhutanese refugee. They have given away our important water resources to India by signing treaties which were extremely unfavorable to Nepal. The so called democrats have tarnished the image of Nepal so much so that even a country like Bhutan does not give a hoot about Nepal anymore.

The Future Looks Grim For Nepalese People

Unless the people come forward and demand for the establishment of meritocracy, the future of Nepal and the fate of Nepalese people looks very dark. The elections have become a big joke. Those who are in power have illegally earned untold amount of money. They use this kind of sin money to buy votes. People are trapped in a democracy, which is corrupt and dysfunctional. It has enabled the perpetuation of injustice, destruction of the environment, reckless disregard for human rights and human life. Unless the people come forward and demand for the change, Nepal and Nepalese people suffer more than those in other troubled regions of the world such as Sudan.

What Next?

Introduce Meritocracy and convince other countries that democracy spells DISASTER for Nepal. Three out of every four persons in Nepal live in poverty. Nearly 80% of the people of Nepal live in a less than a dollar-a-day. The per capita income of Nepal is less than $200. The literacy rate is less than 27%, and it is one of the lowest in the world. Twenty percent of the children die within a year of birth. Corrupt political parties have brought dissension, division, misery, and suffering to the people. They have institutionalized corruption in the country. Corruption, lying, stealing, looting, vandalizing, littering, etc. have become the norms of the Nepali society, even though all these vices used to be non-existent and unheard of in Nepal. Party bosses have become fat cats. They have sucked up the blood of the Nepalese people, emptied the national treasury, robbed off the Nepalese people of their hopes and dreams, and have abused human rights. Even a prostitute has more moral and ethical values than these corruptocrats. They deserve persecution and penalty for the crimes committed against the Nepalese people.

Maoists are killing civilians everyday in the name of People?s War. It seems they are really fighting war against the people since people themselves have started fighting against the atrocities of the Maoists. Enough is enough. People are not going to be intimidated by the criminals everyday. Since the government has failed to protect them against the Maoists, people have started to fight back against rape, murder, extortion, and destruction caused by the Maoists. I hope their stupid leaders realize what they have done to the people is wrong. It seems that Maoists have turned into bandits and criminals. And their coward leaders have no control over what their comrades are doing in the villages. Destruction of infrastructure and killing of innocent civilians is an act of terrorism.


Educated in Nepal, Great Britain, Canada, and Unted States, Dr. Khagendra Thapa is an award winning and distinguished professor , Ferris State University.

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