Criminals Raising Head

Bhimsen Thapaliya

A senior construction entrepreneur was shot dead in broad daylight in the capital on Monday. This is a reminder of the fact that the government is currently unable to handle the security affairs of the country efficiently. Or there might be the element of negligence and oversight on the part of the Home Ministry at a time when the coalition partners in the government are engaged in making new alliances. The alliance making is entirely focused on upcoming elections, drawing the attention away from the issues that address the concerns of the general public.
Criminal activities naturally go up in the country during the time of transition time when old regime is falling in favour of new one, new political equation is taking shape or at the juncture like now when votes get more prominence than the grievances of the voters. Criminals are clever people who are constantly watching how the politics of the country is working, how parties are bickering and what lapses and loopholes are occurring in law enforcement and public administration. When they feel that time is favourable, they unleash their mean activities.
Maoist leader Janardan Sharma, who made outstanding performance last time as energy minister by ridding the capital city of crippling power outage, is currently in charge of the Home Ministry. No major security problems have erupted during his past four-month tenure but now criminals are raising their heads all of a sudden when the government is mired in a state of uncertainty and disunity. This is a kind of situation every criminal is waiting for. The issue of public security probably fell in shadow due to current political focus on upcoming provincial and federal elections. It is with focus on election that Prachanda forged an unexpected alliance with the CPN-UML.
A cloud of uncertainty reins in the government as it is not yet clear whether the ruling coalition will disband or continue together. The Maoist Centre has said that its ministers are ready to resign if the Prime Minister wishes so. But the PM has said that he will not force any ministers to leave office though there are talks of inducting more members of the cabinet as Nepali Congress moves ahead forging tit-for-tat alliance with like-minded parties. This will likely further inflate the size of the already record breaking jumbo council of ministers but the government continues to lack executive clarity due to formation of new alliances by coalition partners. When political focus is blurred, criminals see the opportune time.
News reports have said that there were intelligence reports of some criminals threatening to unleash their activities in the capital. Such a threat was grossly overlooked by concerned government agencies. The murder of the president of Nepal Construction Entrepreneurs Association Sarad Gauchan may be the victim of the apathy and negligence of security agencies. Contractors have called a halt to construction activities until the culprit is nabbed. This must have put pressure on the Home Ministry.

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