Category Archives: General

Culprit for Corruption: Person or Power?

As quoted by Lord Acton “Power tends to corrupt”, I believe its the power we grant to people or group of people that tends to corrupt rather then the man himself. For me, “the man is just a vector”.


Image In the Corruption Perception Index-2013 published by Transparency International, Nepal ranks 116th, with 31 points on a scale of 0-100. Last year Nepal stood at 154th position with 27 points. This situation seems improving, however Nepal still is one of the most corrupt country in the world. The Index scores 177 countries and territories on a scale from 0 (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean). No country has a perfect score, and two-thirds of countries score below 50. This indicates a serious, worldwide corruption problem. – See more at: .

If a question “Why is Nepal underdeveloped?” is blindly thrown to the air in Nepal, it is more likely to receive the same answer “Corruption”. This may be probably none of us have been left sacred out of corruption directly or indirectly. The sectors most seriously affected and involved in corruption in Nepal are: Bureaucracy, Politics and Business, however there’s…

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Ukraine, Ethnic Division, Decentralization, and Secession

Ukraine is in the news and that’s not a good thing.

International Liberty

Ukraine is in the news and that’s not a good thing.

I’m not a foreign policy expert, to be sure, but it can’t be a positive sign when nations with nuclear weapons start squabbling with each other. And that’s what’s happening now that Russia is supposedly occupying Crimea and perhaps other parts of Ukraine and Western powers are complaining.

I’m going to add my two cents to this issue, but I’m going to approach it from an unusual angle.

Look at this linguistic map of Ukraine. The red parts of the country show where Russian is the primary language and most people presumably are ethnically Russian.

Russian in Ukraine

Now look at these maps (from here, here, here, and here) showing various election results in the country.

Ukraine Election Results

Like I said, I’m not overly literate on foreign policy, but isn’t it obvious that the Ukrainians and the Russians have…

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A Political Triangle

A Political Triangle.

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Society Vs Individualism

Individualism calls for self-reliance; it promotes “freedom” and “encouragement of diversity”. It motivates as well as allows everyone to make full use of their intelligence and potential, which expedites the development of society but in most of the countries today the realization as to individualism is almost zero. Well this reminds me of an incident at my society “Nepalese society.”   A little while ago a friend of mine was given the opportunity to present her research in a seminar held in Delhi. Regrettably she wasn’t able to attend the seminar as her family did not permit her to travel alone to a far-off land because they were guided by the old lame society that created credence that a daughter shouldn’t be given such freedom of movement. And unhappily, she ended up unwillingly agreeing to it.

So forth most women, after getting married, give their jobs up and stop pursuing their career as their in laws wouldn’t want them to work. Our societies’ take on women as household job holders; the outside world taking is a man’s business.

Correspondingly, the society holds the supreme position in every sphere of individual lives. They get to choose career options for the next generation and as such.  The society has somewhat fabricated a frame work of “who becomes what.” For an instance:  a doctor’s kid becomes a doctor and so on. Rare is the case where a growing son/daughter gets to decide about his/her career. Although children are raised and taught that they can do or be anything. Encouraged to standout and make a name for themselves. Be unique. But when time comes to stand for own self, the society shuts the door. And the individuals who want to grow and speak up for their rights and liberties due to the fear of the social norms they remain silent as they feel that eventually they have to exist in the same society. Going against those norms and values will only create abhorrence towards them. They fear of being left out in the society. Their rights would not be perfectly secure in isolation.

Similarly the air of nepotism and favoritism hovers all around our society which is much more guided by crony societal norms and values. It has rather become a social trend today that if an individual is related to a political personality or is a close friend to a political entity then s/he is to hold utmost respect in the society. All other deserving candidates are left empty-handed; their ideas left unheard.  The rule of law has been seen to lie under the societal values that have certainly demotivated people wanting to expand their business enterprise rather they prefer migration, since they no more feel secure about their life and property in the society they live in.

Another paradigm would be the quota system also regarded as a positive discrimination placed upon women specially; the positive discrimination is now what society wants since they have placed women into the level of weaker section. Why not promote free competition? Why the labeling when women are equally capable?

There are countless people who fear and are affected by societal influence. Exception is rare. Indeed it becomes illogical to believe that we are individuals, the master of our choice, instead we are just a bunch of conformity “The YES Heads” having agreed to the social restrictions every time.

Since inception the society has been the boss, it loses respect for the individuals those who disagree with their settings “The NO Heads”. This would so clearly mean that there is no road paved for any of us to attain individualism. Once more the pertinent case would be the caste based division where people are not allowed to create relationship based on their choice and consent .It’s the family and the society who choose or claim about who would be a good spouse for their son or daughter. Here again, our choice are determined by our family origin, the society we belong, our physical infirmities, our gender per se. There is barely any space for our ability and creativity.

In most places in our society at whatever time an individual has gone demanding for their individualism. There sits a check person at the entrance who evaluates the demands with the standing norms. Hence our claims of valuing freedom, choice, diversity, liberty to be respected has to be as per the societal norms and values or whether the person has close ties with political entities or not. Precisely speaking our demand has to be equal to the principles supplied by the society or we have to pay to the authorities for our demands. Since decades and long our society has been walking on the myths and always has been placed above individual.

We only have been exercising the possessory rights the ownerships rights have always been rested upon the society and the political groups.

Society has failed to realize the importance of individualism and economic growth. Countries around the world are accepting and adapting to the notion of free society. Where in freest society, arranged marriage is out of the chart per se. Individual rights and liberties are kept on the top priority, in free world people know the value of individual rights and liberties.  But Nepal lags far behind and the society still walks on myth. Individuals live and liberty has not yet found its right place. We still are enslaved and barbed around by societal norms and values.

Students for Liberty – Nepal is recently making an effort by mobilizing the young groups, advocating about the individual rights and liberties and taking its awareness campaign on to the streets to let every people know of the values of individual rights and liberty. Their liberal thoughts and speech. The freedom to pursue livelihood at individual choice and consent.

Post by: Riya Basnet

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Academic Freedom in Nepal

Academic freedom, the freedom of teachers and students to teach, study, and pursue knowledge and research without unreasonable interference or restriction from law, institutional regulations, or public pressure. Its basic elements include the freedom of teachers to inquire into any subject that evokes their intellectual concern; to present their findings to their students, colleagues, and others; to publish their data and conclusions without control or censorship; and to teach in the manner they consider professionally appropriate. For students, the basic elements include the freedom to study subjects that concern them and to form conclusions for themselves and express their opinions (Encyclopaedia, Britannica).

af1 Banner: Let us Study.

To talk about academic freedom, i remember a teacher punishing a student in answering a question in different words arrangement as was written by the teacher. I was 10 at the time, when I took the issue to the principle to have the right to answer the question in my own words. I was heard. However, this is not a single point where teacher compel students to memorize their words and try to jail the students in the name of discipline.

The talk to academic freedom in Nepal should be started from the access to school, reaching to school, choosing academics and taking class while the world is talking about the international freedom of academics. Academic Freedom is a far talk in Nepal where there is no basics of academic freedom i.e. freedom of choice in academics. Reports illustrate no formal restriction in Nepal. However, I come to the point there is also no formal academic freedom in Nepal. Government has felt necessity to announce no strike to Dairy Vehicles, but not the academic institution vehicles.

It is however pitiful when the academic institutions, students and teachers themselves go for strike for months disturbing the study schedules and schedules of exam as well. Many of the times a 4 year course takes 6 years to complete because of the strikes and several postponing of the exam schedules. Tribhuvan University is the university where one should always reconfirm if there is strike or not, before having a visit.

No legal restriction in academia does not mean we have no restriction. Social restriction have become more prominent to the context of freedom of choice in academics as well as freedom to study in academic institutions. Academic Institutions are open but the tutor cannot reach the college because of strike. Students cannot reach their college because of strike. Students reach to exam center and notice that the exam has post-pond.

So are we having academic freedom in Nepal?

By Anuj Niroula

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