Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


Nepal Government Shoots At People's Back

Nepal Government Shoots At People's Back

by Mohan Nepali, Kathmandu

The Nepal government headed by the Nepali Congress has pleased the oil dealers of Nepal by increasing the petroleum oil and cooking gas prices once again. Economic experts claim that the government raises an annual tax of more than eight billion rupees (about US$12 billion) from the sale of oil to people. This is the amount that can adjust the irregularities in the oil market. Compared to the per capita income of Nepalis (currently US$250 p.a.), the market prices are 100-500 percent higher and they de-humanize people’s living standards though the ruling elites and a large number of domestic and foreign illegal money-amassers do not feel affected at all. So far oil dealers of Nepal have de facto been been running the government-owned Nepal Oil Corporation, one of the leading corrupt corporations from where many government officials and private blackmarkeeters hugely benefit.

Previously, when the oil prices were increased, the transport enterpreneurs proposed to the government for an exorbitant increase in transport fare and the government, without consideration of any scientific method of calculation, increased the transport costs as per the wishes of profiteers.

The Nepal government was indulged in stinky oil polititics for over a year by making thousands of vehicles queue up in the streets of Kathmandu to create in people a psychology tolerable for price hikes. As people had to queue up for the whole day and night, they rather began to believe that price hikes could do them better. This was exactly what the government wanted people to think before price hikes would be announed.
As Nepal is going throuh a vacillating peace process being affected by war business elements and political feudal-compradors, the Nepalis do not have an income status to manage properly along with the price hikes. Most of the poor masses live in rural parts and are downtrodden. They need more state help and income generation programs. But Nepal’s leaderships founded on feudalist mechanisms have not been able to demonstrate better alternatives for the people to develop their economic activities. Thus, most feel that the latest oil price hikes do not match with the democratic values.

The Nepal government has been pursuing an irresponsible path without standardizing the remuneration of Nepali workers. Most of the Nepali workers in the country draw a wage less than a dollar daily. Although the governemnt has been trying to justify its oil price hikes by the American and European makerts, most of the people in Nepal are not happy at this.

In response to the oil price hikes, thousands of Nepali students affiliated with different political parties on Thursday protested in the streets of Kathmandu. Similarly, transport enterprenuers have also criticized the hike.

The pricing system of oil in Nepal is nontransparent. Most of the people, including both political leaders and journalists, do not have any idea of how the petroleum products are priced. Out of this nontransparency, many doubt that there is some kind of secret compromise between the brokers of Indian Oil Corporation, Nepal Oil Corporation and oil dealers. It is usually said that even a single oil dealer can easily manipulate the state-owned oil corporation that is equipped with the authority to increase oil prices any time to any extent.


© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Binoy Kampmark: Ineffectual Boycotts: The Beijing Winter Olympics
Making moral statements in the blood and gristle of international relations can often come across as feeble. In doing so, the maker serves the worst of all worlds: to reveal a false sense of assurance that something was done while serving no actual purpose other than to provoke. Anger, and impotence, follow... More>>

Keith Rankin: Science, Scientists, And Scientism
Science, in the not-so-recent-past, has often had a bad press. It's been personified, particularly by the political left, as Frankenstein, as agents of capitalism, classical liberalism, colonialism, sexism (yang over yin), eugenics, and god-like pretension. More recently though, in the zeitgeists of climate change awareness and covid, it's had an unusually good press; although we retain this persistent worry that viruses such as SARS-Cov2 may be the unwitting or witting result of the work of careless or evil scientists... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Can ACT's Dream Run Continue?

By most reckonings the ACT Party has had a very successful political year. Not only has its expanded Parliamentary team settled in well to its work, without controversy or scandal, but its leader has gained in community respect, and the party’s support, at least according to the public opinion polls, has increased sharply... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Question Time Is Anything But
The focus placed on the first couple of Question Time exchanges between the new leader of the National Party and the Prime Minister will have seemed excessive to many but the most seasoned Parliamentary observers. Most people, especially those outside the Wellington beltway, imagine Question Time is exactly what it sounds... More>>

Gasbagging In Glasgow: COP26 And Phasing Down Coal

Words can provide sharp traps, fettering language and caging definitions. They can also speak to freedom of action and permissiveness. At COP26, that permissiveness was all the more present in the haggling ahead of what would become the Glasgow Climate Pact... More>>

Globetrotter: Why Julian Assange’s Inhumane Prosecution Imperils Justice For Us All

When I first saw Julian Assange in Belmarsh prison, in 2019, shortly after he had been dragged from his refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy, he said, “I think I am losing my mind.”
He was gaunt and emaciated, his eyes hollow and the thinness of his arms was emphasized by a yellow identifying cloth tied around his left arm... More>>