Battles of the New Republic


Nepal has undergone tremendous political change in the last couple of decades, yet it is still in search for a government that can give its people a Constitution and bring about political stability. From the role of the Hindu Monarchy and its ultimate collapse to the rise of Maoist and the fate of its revolution, to the drafting of a Constitution and the death of a dream, to the role of neighbors and international players in shaping the course of Nepal’s contemporary history, Prashant Jha paints a vivid picture of Nepal’s transitional journey in the “Battles of the New Republic”.

Here is an excerpt from its Prologue;

This is a story of the politics of gradual revolution, where former rebels attempt to change the mainstream even as the mainstream co-opts and changes them; of partial sovereignty where domestic political actors have to grapple with the role of a regional power in a complex international environment; of inclusive nationalism where marginalized social groups struggle for dignity and power and challenge long held notions of what constitutes being a citizen; and of institutionalizing shanty and sambidhan, peace and the Constitution, in a polity governed by a fragile balance of power, with no outright victors or losers.

The book covers many facets of politics, governance and leadership, written in the context of Nepal but relevant to many societies around the world today. It seeks answer to the fundamental political question of who ought to govern, to what end and for whose cause.

A very good read indeed!

Chewang Rinzin
Reviewed by on May 16th, 2015