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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Third letter to PM Bhattarai: Please leave alone some institutions

Dear Dr. Bhattarai,

I neither hope you will ever read this letter nor believe you are a man capable of answering to it which obviously needs peering beyond your devastatingly narrow cocoon that stretches merely from Singha Durbar to your party office.
In my second mail to you I had cautioned you of so many traps ahead after seeing your blunders that were unexpected to many. You chose to ignore them and here you are now, a man thoroughly despised and sneered by very people who had placed very high hopes on you. 
It gives me immense pain to realize that, while there are limits of how high one can rise in terms of the accomplishments, there seem to be no such limits on how deep one can fall into disgrace. Of course you are not the only victim and Nepal’s political domain is monopoly of precisely that kind of people. In fact, you have come as a model of how worst to fall in a morass and many generations will now remember you as a man of widely believed capability and integrity ruined so thoroughly and so early by the power that the well-wishers were forced to turn into critics so swiftly. 

Dear Dr. Bhattarai,

We neither expect you to bring an economic miracle in Nepal nor to challenge a powerful neighbor. Neither do we expect you to cleanse the thoroughly corrupt political system in Nepal, nor do we expect you to wipe the poverty in the country with a magic wand. The only thing we want is, now that the impotency of all the politicians has left the country stranded and bewildered in a challenging world without a constitution, you at least spare some of the structures and institutions in the country from the plague of political interference that threatens their existence itself.
I am writing this letter precisely because your latest activities have targeted these institutions with such a criminal zeal that soon the public institutions in the country may be history, just as was the case with Sajha Yatayat. While you are busy with calculations of who will get what by appointing whom in which institution, the institutions meanwhile face a real existential threat. Letting these institutions in the hands of utterly unprofessional sycophants is the perfect recipe for their collapse. 

I think you need no example for this. When the whole country was enraged by the clumsy and utterly unethical way in which Hira Bahadur Maharjan, VC of TU, was dealing with the crisis at TU Teaching Hospital during the second fast-onto-death by revered Dr. Govinda K C, even you and Dina Nathji were visibly distressed and were pressurizing the trio (VC, Rector, Registrar) at TU to decide fast on the seniority-based appointment. But the real people responsible for the appointment, led by Maharjan, were still bragging about how best to serve the interest of that singular party UML whose bunch of sycophants had run a parallel drama of relay fasting at TUTH after a vigorous and shameful propaganda stunt to smear Dr. K C. Eventually Dr. K C’s fast dragged to day 6 dangerously and everyone was exasperated; yet the Maharjan et al were busy with their calculations of who will gain and who will lose with which kind of appointment.

Agreed, the disaster in TUTH is almost entirely due to the unfortunate appointment made in the university by your predecessor Jhalanath Khanal. But given the common belief that you are not mentally retarded, you, as the Chancellor, could have judged well while appointing the new VC at Patan Academy. It appears, the money-making business of all ruling parties including your party is going well and an appointment devoid of give-and-take or nepotism could not have harmed the prospects of your party or the coalition partners that bad.  Yet in a dangerous lapse of judgment, you chose a woman comparable to the man at the chair of VC at TU.  I won’t call the duo of Maharjan and Bhandari exactly mentally retarded but a better term for them would be professionally delinquent. By induction, you too would deserve a parallel crown as the Chancellor of both the institutions.
The woman’s (I won’t call her a doctor or a professional for I believe on deeds of people rather than degrees and she has given her true introduction with her behavior at Patan since her arrival from Dharan, a place of mega corruption) capacity to harm the institution seems to be troublingly ominous going by the way she has chosen to handle the current unrest in the institution.
Now I wonder, rather than going to the rules that are formulated at the very beginning with the intent to bend, misinterpret and misuse; can you think a bit differently, even in a bout of relapse of your conscience as Dr. Baburam Bhattarai and not PM Bhattarai? If the VC is very powerful to make decisions at the university or an academy, why don’t you use your power just to sack them for the larger good? While you silently keep calculating the loss and gain of such a step, the public is literally spitting towards your castles. Had you shown courage to dislodge the thoroughly unethical Maharjan at TU at that time of crisis, TUTH and TU itself would have been in a very good and stable state now. 
 If you have not completely lost the faculty of comprehension, I hope you get the point with all this and more words do not necessarily make a better case, I believe. With this, if you have any chance of reverting to your older self for even a moment, it is perfectly possible to sack the woman at Patan Academy to salvage the institution.
If you find these words crude or inappropriate at this moment, I advise you to reread this months after you descend from the chair of PM and your field of vision is restored. Now you are in a world that is upside down and a very thick and opaque glasses limit your visibility. I hope you will gain the faculty of comprehension too some time in future, sooner or later, so that you can see the blunders of this era for what they really are. 
My sympathies and well wishes are always with you. 

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