Generally speaking Dr. Shashank Koirala, the youngest son of late BP Koirala, is a shy person.
He is currently the General Secretary of the Nepal’s oldest party, the Nepali Congress, which means that immediately after the Party President, SB Deuba, his position in the party is not only important but should he so desire can easily play the role of a “game changer”. But he prefers to go smoothly without disturbing the various groups and subgroups that have cropped up inside his party of late and were against the poor performances of President Deuba. .
Yet he listens to the accusations expressed by such groups but prefers very tactfully not to speak even a word against President Deuba stating that his current post doesn’t allow him to denounce Sher Bahadur Deuba though he has several shortcoming, says Dr. Koirala, as had been seen at time of the election and thereafter.
For example, Ram Chandra Poudel, KP Sitaula and PM Singh are the ones who are hell bent on destabilizing the Deuba Presidency.
Dr. Koirala who is an Ophthalmologist by profession yet he entered into the politics of the party which his late father founded several decades ago.
Says Dr. Koirala that what will happen to the prestige and popularity of the party if he too criticizes his own party president for his seen and unseen follies.
“The party will further weaken if he does so by going against the Party President and that he is not doing so only to keep the party going despite the internal complaints that are many emanating from various quarters”.
“I wish to do away with the various groups and subgroups that have cropped up of late and prefer to unite the party for the common good of the party and that of the nation ultimately”.
Perhaps a wishful thinking only. However, to hope is not a crime in a democratic system that we have now.
In saying so, he in a subtle manner hints that he too was not that much happy with the manner President Deuba has been handling the party.
But has kept the needed restraints in order that the party may not go berserk if party’s top stalwarts at a time pounce upon President Deuba.
Internally Dr. Koirala believes that a time would soon come for him when he could steer the party as next President should the outcome of the next general convention favor him. He is making efforts in this regard, analysts have been told by some NC insiders.
However, for junior Koirala things are not that easy simply because his cousin, Dr. Shekhar Koirala, a physician by profession, too is in the Presidential race provided the Koirala family patch up their differences much ahead of the upcoming convention.
It was in the rumor that the three Koiralas, eg. Ms. Sujata Koirala, Dr. Shekhar Koirala and Dr. Shashank Koirala count much still in the scheme of the Nepali Congress political matters.
A sizeable chunk of the NC still believes that the party has a bright future only if one Koirala, among the three, steer the party.
Needless to say, if the three Koiralas mend their differences and restrain their individual high ambitions, then the combined strength of these brothers and sisters can do a lot for the elevation of the sagging morale of the NC party observed after the fresh election reversals.
Yet, Dr. Shekhar Koirala who lost the election this time, bluntly claims that simply being the family member of late BP Koirala doesn’t mean that they could garner massive votes during the next general convention that shall elect a new President for the Party.
He is true to a greater extent but yet the charisma of late BP Koirala yet perhaps counts much inside the NC party politics for various understandable reasons.
Of late Dr. Shekhar has emerged as the greatest critique of President Deuba.
Having said this, Dr. Shashank Koirala internally appears to have made up his mind that he would contest the election for the Party President at time of the next General Convention.
Much shall depend if Dr. Shashank enjoys the needed and adequate support from his cousins from his own family. Their combined strength shall determine the future course of the party and Dr. Koirala’s high ambitions to capture the President post come next general convention.
Yet the stumbling block for the Koirala family is their tacit connections with the Indian regime since the party’s inception. So much will also depend on how the Indian establishment looks at the Koirala family and of the three, most important of it all, which one could be the best subservient for the coercive regime?
It is an altogether a different matter that President Deuba brought the disaster for the NC party this fresh election because of his excessive bowing down to the blockade regime-India.
Dr. Shashank Koirala prefers silence these days as he thinks that such a silence shall pay in the long run both inside the party and across the border.
Analysis based on Kantipur reporting dated 4 April, 2018.