Bhutan

The Zhemgang story

Jan 20, 2018
For the past few months the nation has been in the grip of an intense debate on Zhemgang Dzongkhag Tshogdu’s resolution on the ‘Gho and Kira,’ adamantly pushed by its Thrizin who is also the Goshing Gup.
 
Coincidentally the Anti Corruption Commission in early May 2017 detained and questioned the Thrizin for allegedly embezzling Nu 10 mn as the Goshing Gup from money meant for road construction. The ACC later charge sheeted him to the OAG for the alleged embezzlement. This news was carried in many national media outlets.
 
The DT resolution on ‘Gho and Kira’ was passed in August 2017 and it came out in written form in October 2017 after which it was announced to the country causing a lot of controversy.
 
Leaving apart all the debate on culture , it is now time to ask an elemental question of why out of the 20 Thrizins it is only this one who is adamant on the ‘Gho and Kira’ rule, and that too after the Home Ministry had asked all Thrizins to not undertake any draconian measures on this front.
 
This is also the only Thrizin against whom legal proceedings are on for corruption.
 
Culture and tradition are important and emotive issues in this country. It is taken seriously and given its due at all levels.
 
However, the time has come to ask if the important cause of culture and tradition is sometimes misused by some people who want to cover their own shortcomings.
 
Whatever, the motivations or excuses of the Zhemgang Thrizin the cause of culture and tradition has been dealt two blows.
 
The first is by trying to enforce it in a draconian and absolute manner, it has caused an unnecessary national backlash that may hamper other more genuine efforts to promote culture.
 
The second is that with a Thrizin charged with massive embezzlement of government funds taking up the cause, the cause itself suffers with such a tainted ‘champion,’ whose intention itself can be questioned.
 
The Bhutanese, January 20, 2018

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