Category Archives: thought provoking

What is 21st century relevant leadership for Nepal?

“What is 21st century relevant leadership for Nepal?”

In the past few months, there has been a lively discussion in the national media. All about an acute need for an alternative ‘political’ force in Nepal. I am encouraged by this intellectual discourse which surely will help build 21st century relevant leaders for Nepal. Thank you everyone who have consistently kept this important agenda into the limelight.

Here are my 2 years of fresh experiences building a political force in Nepal that would be relevant for the 21st century.

2 years ago, Nepal was going through a tumultuous period. A syndicate of incompetent political parties who had little will or vision were taking turns ruling Nepal. Bitter political wranglings topped by acute corruption was rapidly dismantling any good governance we had left. All of a sudden, Nepal’s constitution building body was abruptly dissolved, leaving behind a power vaccum with a deeply divided society.

This created much hatred towards the country’s political forces. Every Nepali then, had only one question in their minds, “ (Oh god!) What Next?”

At such crucial times, many Nepalese from different professions and backgrounds came together and started searching for an answer to this “What Next?” We publicly brainstormed for 22 continuous weeks taking feedbacks from more than a 1,000 concerned Nepalese from all walks of life. Students ,house-wives, CEOs, teachers, social workers, businesswomen, everyone had one consistent advice for us. “Only a 21st century relevant leadership carrying political force would end this ever-growing crisis and help bring about lasting positive transformation for Nepal. This laid the foundation for “BibekSheel Nepali” party.

“So what is 21st century relevant leadership for Nepal?” For the last 2 years, we have built Bibeksheel Nepali from ground-up by answering this pertinent question. We identified 12 key 21st century leadership values/traits a political force should have to lead us to a prosperous Nepal within a generation.

  1. Results oriented & pragmatic: A political force has to be simply results-oriented, with an evolving, pragmatic philosophy to help meet that. It’s foundation would rest on at least these eight 21st century basic values; responsibility, accountability, prosperity, empowerment, freedom, diversity, servant government and pragmatism.
  2. Follow the middle path (balance): This progressive force follows a middle path whereby on one hand, it inspires citizens to be responsible while simultaneously builds systems to hold leaders accountable. It plays a delicate balancing act by enabling citizens to become the agents of prosperity while also building a servant government system that guarantees public welfare for those in need.
  3. Moderate views: This moderate force has a leadership that prescribes balanced, pragmatic solutions to keep this country united and progressive.
  4. Equitable prosperity: It doggedly drives the country towards ‘equitable prosperity’, concentrating politics on an economy that provides opportunity for every citizen to prosper.
  5. Systemized: In Nepal, the crux of the problem lies not in an person but in their system (culture). Hence this political force will rely upon a effective system and not on individual charismatic leaders.  It’s structure is made of 3 parallel ‘check and balance’ systems; the legislature, executive and judiciary. Just like an effective 21st century democratic government. The legislature is made of politicians who want to get in to government to rule (like any traditional political party). The executive has managers and experts who professionally manage the organization efficiently and transparently. The judiciary has those whose primary goal is to keep up discipline, protect the values (culture) and the constitution of the organization at all costs. These 3 wings independently and inter dependently work with each other to check and balance each other. This ‘check and balance’ system makes this political force run accountably, transparently and effectively.
  6. Self reliant members: The primary reason Nepal’s current political forces are corrupt and thus inept is because their members (cadres) are often reliant upon others for their daily livelihood. This problem has to be tackled at its roots. That is why any 21st century relevant political force has to make sure its members become self-reliant by being entrepreneurial or self-employed, or simply employed. This way, the party members do not have to compromise on their ideals and values because of their family’s livelihood concerns!
  7. Values based: A political force will still survive even if there are sharply differing views, policies or working styles between its members. But it shall self-destruct if its members don’t carry within themselves the same values of the institution! In order to always stay on the right path, this power has to provoke its members to live up to its core values.
  8. Meritocratic leadership building system: It consistently trains and produces leaders who not only know how to get elected but also how to consistently deliver once they are in the government. The leaders produced will be skilled at creating win-win environments. Their contributions are calculated on the basis of their merits and judged using scientific performance measurement systems.
  9. Transparent: It will be a model of transparency for others. From fund-collection to expenses to decisions, it will inject transparency into every level of its system.
  10. Regular leadership change (regular power fluidity): In the end, absolute power and position corrupts absolutely. That is why an alternate political force has to build a system that regularly and consistently filters its leadership.
  11. Youth centric: Youths will make the bulk of this political force. And thus it will be led by youthful leadership who will enthusiastically spread its core values to all corners.
  12. Marathon runners:  It does not run like a hundred meter sprinter, but more so as a relay marathon runner in any agenda it takes up. In Nepal, only such power will win which is not overtly opportunisitic but actually spends more time to persistently builds enough stamina to outlast everyone else in the work it handles.

You might ask, would such a political force succeed? Using these ideals, we ran in Nepal’s 2nd constitution assembly elections in the November of 2013, in 4 tough test areas in Kathmandu The constitutencies 1, 4,5 and 8 where we ran were one of the toughest because we were up against political heavyweights of Nepal. In only a month-long shoestring campaign, We took the symbol of a “dog” securing a respectable 5th place out of 26 or more political parties in 2  test areas ( 6th and 7th in the other 2). In these test areas, we managed to prove ourselves as a force to be reckoned. Going forward, we have already reached more than 100,000 Nepalese from 73 districts out of 74 in Nepal and created an informal network in 25 different countries.

Because of these 21st century relevant leadership values we have incorporated in the past 2 years, we are now confident of this. The only forces that will lead this country in the future are going to be the ones that consistently create a win-win environment.

In conclusion, the end goal of any political force who wants to stay relevant in 21st century Nepal should be to build a peaceful, prosperous Nepal within our life-time. And the only ones to make sure this are those stacked with 21st century relevant leaders.

 

10 historical actions that shaped Modern era Nepal

These actions in our history have helped much to shape Nepal of today:

  1. The culture of building temples all over Nepal ( Traders and artisans of the Malla era deserve respect for innovating and then immortalizing our distinct Nepali architecture).

  2. Unification of modern state of Nepal in the 18th Century by Prithivi Narayan Shah and his younger son, Bahadur Shah. (We are a nation called ‘Nepal’ because of their  determination! )

  3. Signing of Sugauli Treaty with the powerful ‘sun never sets’ British Empire (Bhimsen Thapa and fellow military and civilian leaders actions perhaps saved Nepal from dissolving into another state).

  4. People’s revolutions that ended the Rana rule in 1953, the absolute monarchy in 1990 and the monarchy itself in 2008. (Nepali citizens dared to remove dictatorship in 3 phases).

  5. Nepali soldiers in international peace building United Nations forces and in World Wars 1 and 2 as Gurkhas: (Their exemplary services have presented one consistent positive image of Nepal worldwide for one whole century).

  6. Community forests and  large parts of Nepal allocated as National park 1960 onwards (This has silently protected South Asia’s water table for a billion plus people, quietly delaying the ever-looming water crisis for the time-being).

  7. Madhesh Andolan in 2008 was a result of frustrations from the ruling aristocracy of Kathmandu’s oppression of the Terai plains and its natives. (This established a precedence where dignity along with fair prosperity has become a prerequisite for united, prosperous Nepal).

  8. Rejection of communal forces in Nepal in Constituent Assembly 2 in 2014: (Nepali citizens have time and again proved that united we rise, divided we WILL fall).

  9. Sanduk Ruit’s eye surgery technique literally opened eyes of hundreds of thousands of people worldwide (He has become a positive example of one Nepali rising onto become a model global citizen and set a benchmark on what must a Nepali do if s/he wants to shine globally).

  10. From early 1990’s, 2.5 million+ Nepali migrant workers left Nepal to transform Arab and east Asian countries from nomadic countries to developed countries within a single generation. (By contributing 25% of the total economy [at 2014] at the cost of their dreams, dignity, family and many with their own lives, they have been silently helping Nepal survive the continuous looting and pillaging of our country by syndicates of rulers in the name of democracy).

This is my personal view. I respect any disagreements and urge you to add your own lists in the comments below.

(राजनीतिक) बिधार्थी संगठनको सट्टा के त ?

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राजनीतिक बिधार्थी संगठनको ठाँउमा ‘कलेज कल्याण परिषद” राखे कसो होला ?
जसमा ‘बिधार्थी, प्रशासक, प्रध्यापक, कर्मचारी, त्यो टोलका प्रतिनिधि अनि भुतपूर्व बिधार्थीका प्रतिनिधि’ एकै ठाँउमा बसी सबैका साझा समस्याका हल गरिने छ।

राजनीतिक संघ-संगठनको सट्टा काम अनुसारको क्लब प्रणाली राखे कसो होला ? उदाहरणको लागि उद्दमशील क्लब, कृकेट क्लब, पेशा परामर्श (career counseling) क्लब, वातावरण क्लब अादि खोलेर बिधार्थीको हितमा लाग्ने।

काम नपाएर राजनीतिको नाम लिएर गुण्डागर्दी संगठन खोलेर काम छैन नेपाल । योग्यतामुखी समाज बनाउने हो भने यो चाकडी-गुण्डागर्दी प्रथा त्यागी विवेकशील उपायहरु अपनाउनु बेश साथीहरु !

 

Networks of Hope

Nepal needs networks of “hope” to counter the network of hopelessness that prevails in our society.

“Opportunity creating Network” We need a network of “hopeful” Nepali who want to create opportunities right here so that we can counter network of Nepali who believe that the only way to find opportunities is to leave our home, leave our city and leave our country.

“Rapid reaction Network”: We need a network of “hopeful” Nepali who stand against political corruption in institutions to counter the nexus of corrupt business, politicians and thugs who benefit from our silence.

“Career counseling Network”: We need a network of ‘successful’ Nepali who give the right career advice to counter the culture that advocates its brightest to study abroad (and tries to stop them from coming back by spreading negativity about Nepal)

“Civil society Network” We need a network of ‘hopeful’ professionals who  know they need to cross professional boundaries to solve anything. Only this unity can counter our toxic culture where we expect  for e.g, hospital problems solved only by medical practitioners ; justice problems by only lawyers or education problem by only teachers, or law/order problem solved only by the police.

“Leadership building Network”:  We need a network of ‘generous’ elders who dare to stand back and groom-mold-push youths to lead institutions to counter the syndicates of elders who only want everyone else to follow them (right till their death).

“Network of positive Networks”: Nepal needs a network of Nepali who dare to create “networks of hope” to counter this “cancer of hopelessness” that rules over us now.

And so on….

So are you part of some “network of hope” ?
Tell us. Share with us your network below.
If not, Just start one …

नेपालीमा समग्रमा

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Lets make a ‘virtuous cycle’ in Nepal

“The key to tackling negative is to align enough positives in the same direction that the negative stops being relevant” – Unknown

Now if you exercise this simple solution you will build a virtuous network of good people who will help each other thus creating a virtuous cycle of hope, positivity, prosperity in Nepal.
Today, many good Nepalis are stingy when it comes to recommending other good actions wholeheartedly. Our reasons may be many: suspicion of one’s intent, “I will look bad if that person doesn’t do good”, difficulty in getting out of our comfort zone or even jealousy, etc etc.
Yet what we need today is to just put ‘FAITH’ on other people’s positive actions above everything else.

Let us trust that it is our duty to create a critical mass of good actions in Nepal. Let us have faith in creating the “the virtuous cycle” that will destroy the chains of vicious cycle in Nepal. Let us build and support platforms for Nepalis who are involved in good action, which will one day grow into a critical mass of good people with good actions. This will create a runaway positive engine of prosperity in Nepal.

In summary, Nepal needs more platforms where good actions are noticed and supported by good citizens that starts a “virtuous cycle” here.

Here are simple examples you could start:

  • If someone wants to ban plastics in the neighborhood, connect him / her with elders in the society who are an influence in the society. Don’t shy away. Help her build a platform where she can learn from / teach others.
  • If someone wants to improve traffic, connect them to traffic police who are helpful and willing to accept volunteers or with someone who can give tools to help improve traffic.
  • If someone has an business venture idea, connect her to mentors and incubators or give them small fund to research their idea further.
  • At the very least, don’t dismiss any ‘crazy’ seeming ideas. Please.

To help you start, here are some active platforms I am part of or follow closely, which helps positive people to persistently push or pull other positive Nepalis up.

Entrepreneurs for Nepal
Teach For Nepal
Youth for Blood
Gari Khana deu
BibekSheel Nepali

Do you know others that are pulling, pushing other good people/actions up? Please share with me! I would love to be part of the “virtuous cycle” in Nepal.