The 2nd National Assembly dominated by People’s Democratic Party robbed the civil servants of the inflationary adjusted allowance of 2010. It is an act of disgraceful fraud - the stamp of national indignity.
It is shamelessly claimed that the pay hike of 67% - to – 131% for politicians and constitutional appointees are as per the approval of the 1st Parliament. If that is so, why did the Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay’s Cabinet instruct the 2nd Pay Commission to look into the pay revision of the Ministers etc. along with that of the civil servants? The National Assembly flexed its Legislative muscle to package greed and lies like milk and water - milk for themselves and water for the civil servants.
A seed of permanent discord and grievance has been sown. It is a very unfortunate consequence of democracy in selfish disarray.
I do not begrudge the pay scale for the upper hierarchy. But why? why? why rob the pauper to enrich the Prince? How could the political leaders rob the civil servants of the inflationary adjusted allowance to fund their own 67% - to – 131% pay hike? Was starving the children only way to fatten the mother?
The government should have asked the visiting Indian Prime Minister to restore the scale of balance into the Indo-Bhutan Hydro projects. Narendra Modi should have been requested to revert to the initial hydro project financing of 70% grant and 30% loan (after all, India would be consuming 70% of peak production of Bhutanese hydro projects) or for total grant funding for the escalated costs in the hydro projects or 50 paise raise in Tala and Basochu hydro project electricity export unit rate. Maybe India needs to consider all three simultaneously if Modi really meant that progressive Bhutan is good for India.
There is no need to kneel and beg. A substantive reasonable and nationally dignified approach was and still feasible. The goal of the hour is to have Modi demonstrate in practical economic terms B4B rather than just offering in beautiful Gujarati Hindi glowing tributes to the dragon Kings and the GNH Mountains. Bhutan has Kings and Mountains but there are also the needs and aspirations of the citizens of a sovereign nation.
I do not doubt the sincerity of the Bhutanese Prime Minister’s refusal to accept the extra over and above the pay of Cabinet Ministers. It is in keeping with his socialist tint though no more the trait in general practice. But how come the duly elected democratic Prime Minister is demonstrating a huge void in leadership capacity? He declares that he finds his own pay hike offensive yet he refrains from expressing views on the highs and lows of the two most contradictory benchmark of the pay hike. This confirms that he has difficulty in leading from the front and is unwillingly to follow from the rear. Why is he in such a straightjacket position?
There is a historical lesson to be learnt from the result of the personal austerity measures of Mahatma Gandhi. Such measures of Gandhi could not impact the ways of his core disciples - the leaders of independent India. Instead his acting poor man status idolized the sorry state of half-naked and underfed masses to which many still remain condemned. Likewise the Prime Minister’s seemingly personal sacrifice does not ease the pain and dismay of the nation at large and in particular that of the civil servants who feel betrayed and cheated. The civil servants do not number just 25,000 RCSC employees. They number 25,000 families and if one takes cognizance of the social fabric of extended family system then the number rises three fold. Please wake up! Dear democracy leaders!
I cannot end this sad chapter without drawing a silver lining. Hope is very important! Money Bill or otherwise, the Supreme Court had ruled the constitutional requirement of discussion in both Houses of Parliament and final royal assent. So Civil Servants, pray harder for a royal reprieve immediately or later in the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the 4th King. It was the 4th King who personally negotiated the Chukha hydro electricity export unit rate with India so that he could bring about the 1st major pay revision for the civil servants.
The King of Bhutan who adores his father King may commemorate the 60 years’ service to the nation by a Royal decree that re-instates the 2010 civil servant inflationary adjusted allowance.
I feel that the 2nd National Assembly needs to be corrected in its unlawful withdrawal of the inflationary adjusted 2010 allowance of the civil servants. Unlawful because robbing the masses to enrich few is a form of dictatorial oppression which is unlawful in a State under democratic principles. Here one party is receiving a huge hike and the other being deprived of what it had in order to create the resource to fulfill the greed of the 1st party. Also it was the political campaign promise of the PDP Party to give 20% pay hike and 20% house rent. It’s unlawful to give with the right hand and then take away with the left. Even legislative body like the National Assembly must adhere to a code of conduct that befits and meets the propriety of democracy.