The south-facing window of my house has long ceased to reveal the hills that sit on the edge of Kathmandu. When I peer out of the window, my view now consists of rectangular buildings as tall as five stories—the structures look like giant, rather geometrical monsters. New concrete replaces the old, more aesthetic houses every year as traditional neighborhoods around Patan Durbar Square, like mine, rush towards urbanization.
Financial viability of the federal model has been a big concern of Nepali policymakers and economists in recent times. Many argue that Nepal simply cannot sustain the ‘costly’ federalism. Uma Shankar Prasad, Associate Professor at Tribhuvan University’s Central Department of Economics, thinks the opposite is true: that federalism is the perfect antidote to Nepal’s underdevelopment. But how? Republica’s Biswas Baral and Mahabir Paudyal caught up with Prasad, who has carried out extensive studies on fiscal federalism in Nepal.