Just a week after a gentleman understanding between Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli and Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda to equally share state powers and positions, Prime Minister Oli’s cabinet took a major decision appointing his close political aid and former finance minister Dr. Yubaraj Khatiwada as ambassador to the United States and former chief secretary as ambassador to United Kingdom.
Similarly, reshuffles the cabinet including three of his loyalists and backed his henchman to lodged a provincial government to pull down Prachanda’s loyalists from the government.
Co-chair Prachanda and his group opposed the move in media blaming PM Oli for violating the gentleman understanding. Some persons close to Prachanda and Madhav Kumar Nepal demanded withdrawal of the cabinet recommendations.
However, no one raised any question over the appointment of ambassadors and cabinet reshuffling issue at the Secretariat meeting of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP).
The meeting has concluded without discussing the much talked about Cabinet reshuffling and new appointment. NCP spokesperson Narayan Kaji Shrestha said that the meeting was centered on previous agenda of the party as the Chairmen duo, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli and Pushpa Kamal Dahal 'Prachanda,' could not present concrete proposals on the issues as entrusted to them.
The Secretariat meeting held on Sept. 22 had given the responsibility to the two Chairmen to come up with concrete proposals about the reshuffling of the Council of Ministers.
“Both the Chairmen informed Secretariat meeting that they were working on the responsibility given to them and that they had yet to forge a clear basis for the issues,” said NCP spokesperson Shrestha.
In all this, Prime Minister Oli has shown that the party has nothing to do with his administrative and day to day authority. It seems that Prachanda and other party colleagues accept this.
This is not the first time PM Oli showed his strength. In all the political battles, he has been able to win over rivals of his party. From appointment of ministers to other matters, PM Oli has not surrendered his power.
What Prime Minister Oli has is a unique political trick, which some people term Oli-trick of politics. Prime Minister and co-chair of Nepal Communist Party (NCP) Oli does not have strong theoretical political knowledge of political tricks and tactic but what he knows is a typical Nepali style of traditional cunning, tactic and skill to manage the affairs.
Although he claimed to be a follower of Marxist, Maoist and Leninist communist, what prime minister Oli has been displaying is his skills in the traditional power game based on manipulation and conspiracy of Hindu dominated society to defeat his powerful and united enemies.
Chanakya says everything is justifiable during the war time and there are no questions of ethics and morality. He argued that nothing is wrong to win over enemy in war.
This is what Prime Minister Oli has been pursuing in his politics and turning the thing in his favor. He conspired to break the strength of his rival Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Madhav Nepal duo by encouraging Bam Dev Gautama to rebel. Oli offered Gautam vice president of the party and member at National Assembly for weakening Prachanda-Nepal faction.
After almost two months of hurdles and turmoil, Prime Minister Oli was able to force standing committee to take decision favorable to him.
The strategy of Oli is a product of his culture and times. His morality is based on justification of any means, by hook or crook, to remain in power. Oli’s political tactic also evolves around the politics of Mahabharata. However, his tactic is very much influenced by Chanakya.
Whether one likes it or not, PM Oli remains a successful politician. One can argue about the ethics of his methods, but he has laid the foundation in his political party as to how to run divergent groups and interests. As the legacy of Chanakya, Oli is ruthless and compromising to be in the centre of unchallenged power.