Nepal is going through the most tumultuous period in its history. The writing of the new Constitution will only be a small step towards producing a stable country. While there is no disagreement over the issue of state restructuring itself, challenging spin-offs stemming from a failure to address questions of identity, ethnicity, language, religion, region and culture are emerging as clear fault lines of ‘New Nepal.’ Security sector governance, the structure of the political system and the relations between various organs of the state are yet to be determined, while law and order, supply of daily essentials, and immediate economic relief to the rural hinterlands is already testing the patience of the people. Political parties are once again resorting to the old addiction of forming and dismantling governments, knowing well that this will be disastrous the nascent democracy. A chaotic Nepal will also be a headache for both India and China. This book reflects the nature of the enormous challenges before Nepal and the exceptionally important discussion on how to resolve these problems and move ahead.

Maoist Triumph

Maoist triumph

Initial results showed the Maoists winning everywhere (Figure 3.1). Their victory parade was not just confined to the rural areas but also in the urban centers including capital Kathmandu. The personal appeal of Chairman Prachanda had ensured not only his victory from both the constituencies he contested but also of his once underground revolutionary party. All top leaders of the Maoists triumphed. Dr Baburam Bhattarai won by the largest margin from Gorkha district from where the legendary Gurkha soldiers originated. His wife Hisila Yami, leaders Ram Bahadur Thapa (Badal), Krishna Bahadur Mahara, and almost every leader of the party triumphed in the polls. As British Broadcasting Corporation's (BBC) Charles Haviland reported, “It was an extraordinary vote of confidence in the Maoists.”1

FIGURE 3.1 ...

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