Nepali Times Asian Paints
From The Nepali Press
Bhattarai needs makeover, Nagarik



Less than three months after being sworn in as prime minister, Baburam Bhattarai has been sucked into a whirlwind of controversies ranging from granting impunity to criminals to being unable to curb lawlessness in the country. The decisions he has taken so far in order to appease various parties in the coalition government are tarnishing his once popular image.

Soon after joining office, he had announced austerity measures and stood true to his words by riding the Nepal-assembled Mustang vehicle. However, what followed was the formation of a jumbo cabinet with 49 ministers, appointment of murder convicts as ministers and the decision to have a presidential pardon to a Maoist member convicted of murder by the Supreme Court. These actions have tarnished the prime minister's image.

Although the task of managing and appeasing a discordant coalition government is not easy, Bhattarai's decision to induct a record-breaking cabinet and shelter criminals to remain in power cannot be justified under any circumstances. Therefore, to win back people's confidence he has to admit to these mistakes and withdraw the pardon for Balkrishna Dhungel.

Despite the power struggle between the parties, the recent seven-point agreement has ushered in the only ray of hope for peace and constitution. It is high time the leaders worked together to save the country from sliding down a slippery slope much like Bhattarai's image has.



LATEST ISSUE
638
(11 JAN 2013 - 17 JAN 2013)


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