Despite uncertainties and complexities, an overwhelming number of candidates filed nominations for the second round of local elections slated to be held in provinces 1, 5 and 7. The enthusiasm of candidates shows that people at the grass root level are willing to vote and choose their candidates. The boycott call by Rastriya Janta Party Nepal (RJPN) has not affected the nomination process. Although it was unable to challenge it legally, the failure of the three parties to bring the RJPN in the election process will definitely pose a threat to the legitimacy of the elections. Elections for Province No. 2 has been postponed till September 18, but RJPN’s possibility of joining the third round of elections is bleak. In this scenario, Nepal has to go a long way to establish the legitimacy of the present constitution.
As a Maoist splinter group led by Netra Bikram Chand and sidelined Monarchists are also challenging the legitimacy of constitution promulgated by the three parties, failure to bring RJPN into elections will incur a high cost. Even as political issues are dominating Nepal, the recently announced Secondary Education Exam (SEE) results showed a dismal performance of school education in Nepal. Although Nepal has been spending a huge amount of money on education annually, the quality of education has not improved much. Nepal desperately needs high quality education and technical manpower for future development, but it is pathetic that a large number of students did not get good marks in science and math.
We have decided to look at what is going on in the field of education as our cover story. As Nepal has been facing acute challenges of malnutrition, ACF, a French INGO, organized an international conference on ECD and malnutrition. On the basis of the international conference, we discuss what really came out from the conference as our special story.