Category Archives: Constituent Assembly

An Alternative Constitution for Nepal

While the CA, elected to draft and promulgate a constitution, failed to live by its self imposed deadline of 22 January to finalize the works on a new constitution, a growing political movement called BibekSheel Nepali just released its own version of Nepali Constitution — yesterday on ८ माघ (22 Jan).

Ashutosh Tiwari asked 5 quick questions to Ujwal Thapa, Chairperson of विवेकशील नेपाली BibekSheel Nepali, a political party.

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1. Why do you feel the need to come up with your version of Nepali Constitution when those who were actually elected to do so have not?

  • To prove that constitution can be built if there is good intent and honesty involved.
  • To prove constitution can be built by diverse group of people from different walks of life without wasting billions and years fighting.
  •  To prove that Nepalis can come up with an alternate if the ones who are sent to do the work, don’t make one.
  • To make sure Nepali citizens have an option.

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“अग्रगमनको सिरक ओढ्ने प्रतिगामी”

 प्रविधि र ज्ञानको विश्वव्यापीकरणले गर्दा अब २०१७ वा २०५२ मा गरिएका कुतर्क र हो-कि हो-कि जस्तो भान पार्ने भ्रामक गफ र आस्वासन, विषयको सार होइन व्यक्तिको नियत, तुच्छ गाली र ad hominem आक्रमणको बलमा गरिने राजनीति अब सकियो ।

डा स्वर्णिम वाग्ले

Dr Swarnim Wagle

हिजो (माघ ६, २०७१) हिंडेर सीतापाईलाबाट त्रिपुरेश्वरसम्म र त्यसपछि प्रहरीको गाडीमा संविधानसभाको बैठक हेर्न बानेश्वर गइयो । दर्शक दीर्घामा पत्रकारबाहेक अरु देखिएनन्, माथिबाट डेढघण्टाजति नाराबाजीगर्नेहरुको अनुहार एक्लै नियालें । त्यसपछि मलाई लागेका केही कुरा :

१. कराउँदै संसदनै कब्जा गरेजस्तो देखिँदा पनि माओवादीहरु हतास थिए, अवकाशको संघारमा उभिएको सेनाको असफल जर्नेल जस्तै ।खित-खित हाँसोका बीच गरिएको विरोधमा कुनै sincerity को छनक थिएन ।


“उत्पीडित जनता त भजाई खाने भाँडो वा सत्ता उक्लने भर्यांग भएको कुरो उनीहरुको अन्तर्मनमा थियो होलानै, अब यसको “सुइँको” बाँकी दुनियालाई पनि छ भन्ने कुरा थाहा भएर होला सायद हो-हल्लाको कर्मकाण्डमा कुनै नैतिक दम देखिएन ।”


उत्पीडित जनता त भजाई खाने भाँडो वा सत्ता उक्लने भर्यांग भएको कुरो उनीहरुको अन्तर्मनमा थियो होलानै, अब यसको “सुइँको” बाँकी दुनियालाई पनि छ भन्ने कुरा थाहा भएर होला सायद हो-हल्लाको कर्मकाण्डमा कुनै नैतिक दम देखिएन । त्यत्रो पद ओगटीसकेका प्रचण्डको टिठलाग्दो उपस्थिति र अस्तिदेखिनै उद्दण्ड देखिईरहेका जनार्दन शर्माको प्रस्तुति बिझ्ने खालका थिए।

२. सभामुख र मर्यादापालकहरु असाध्यै शालीन, बुढा कांग्रेसीहरु भद्र। एमाले पनि उस्तै संयमित – आज सुरेन्द्र पाण्डेले त भने रे हामीपनि एकताका यस्तै उग्र थियौं तर अहिले सुध्रेम ।लोकतन्त्रमा धैर्य र परिपक्वताले फल दिदोरैछ ।

३. यो नाटकको उत्कर्सबारे कांग्रेस-एमाले पूर्ण परिचित भएजस्तो गरेपनि, उनीहरुले जोर-जबरजस्ती नगरुन् । माघ ८ को मिति जाने भैगो, अब एक-दुइ हप्ता राप सेलाएपछि संविधानकालागि “बृहत सहमति” को प्रयास जारी रहोस, नयाँ वर्ष वा जेठ १५ लाई अन्तिम मौका ठानी । तर ठुलो जनमतलाई पनि साथ लानु पर्छ — हरेक मुद्दामाथि आफ्नो तर्क र logic खुलारूपले राखुन् । माओवादीहरू पतनोन्मुख भए भन्दैमा लोकतन्त्रवादीहरु गैर-जिम्मेवार हुनहुन्न — विगतको पीडा सम्झदा रीस उठ्दोहो, तर त्यसलाई schadenfreude मै सीमित राखून् ।

४. नेपाली जनता धेरैनै शिक्षित र सु-सुचित भैसके । प्रविधि र ज्ञानको विश्वव्यापीकरणले गर्दा अब २०१७ वा २०५२ मा गरिएका कुतर्क र हो-कि हो-कि जस्तो भान पार्ने भ्रामक गफ र आस्वासन, विषयको सार होइन व्यक्तिको नियत, तुच्छ गाली र ad hominem आक्रमणको बलमा गरिने राजनीति अब सकियो । धेरैनै आशा गरिएका तर चाडैं विश्वसनीयता गुमाएका केही क्रान्तिकारी ठुला नेताहरु यसका प्रमाण हुन् । नपत्याए एक पटक पढे-लेखेकाहरु चर्न निस्कने social media मा आँखा जाओस – जनमतलाई प्रभाव पार्ने तिनै १० प्रतिशत सुकिला-मुकिलानै हुन् | ठुलो सामाजिक मूल्यमै सही, माओवादीले ग्रामीण चेतना र हक-अधिकारको विस्तार गरे बापत इतिहासमा सधन्यबाद यथोचीत स्थान पाउनेनैछन्, तर अब बोक्नुपर्ने सम्वृद्धिको agenda मा माओवादीहरू अग्रगमनको सिरक ओढ्ने प्रतिगामीनै हुन् भन्ने धेरैको ठहर छ । “प्रतिगामी” सस्तो गालीको रूपमा हैनकि साच्चैनै उल्टो बाटो हिंड्ने अर्थमा । Median voter नै निम्न-मध्य आय आर्जने व्यक्ति र वर्ग भएको मुलुकमा सबै दल समाजमुखी र परोपकारी हुन अनिवार्य छ : सच्चा प्रगतिको मापन त अब राष्ट्रिय wealth create गर्ने र त्यसको न्यायोचित बांडफांड गर्ने/गराउने सवालमा कसको मार्ग-चित्र दह्रो छ भन्नेनै मूल प्रश्न हो । राष्ट्रिय चुनौती र विश्व अवसरहरु ख्याल गरी नेपाललाई कसरी चाडैं धनी बनाउने भन्ने हो । यो अभुतपूर्व कसरतमा उग्र-वामपन्थी सोच र कार्यशैली सहायक नहोला ।

५. नेपालमा तीनवटा ठुला राष्ट्रिय पार्टीहरूको लागी space देखिन्छ | यसमा कांग्रेस-एमाले र एउटा लोकतान्त्रिक त्तेस्रो शक्ति अटाउनेछन् । साना-मसिना जातीय वा क्षेत्रीय दल-रूपी पसलहरू त चल्दै गर्लान् । तर आजैदेखि अर्को चुनावलाई कसरी १००% स्वच्छ र निस्पक्ष्य बनाउने हो भन्नेतिर लागौं – आधुनिक प्रविधिमा आधारित राष्ट्रिय परिचयपत्र, विधुतीय भोटिंग मसीन लगायत अन्य विश्वसनीय माध्यमलाई पूर्णत लागु गरौँ । चुनावमा पैसाको प्रभाव र धाँधली कसरी कम गर्ने र पछि बल्झने gerrymandering को संभावनालाई पनि रोक्ने उपाय एवं अन्य बिकृतिहरु हटाइ कस्ता incentives हरूले राजनीतिलाई सफा बनाउला भन्नेबारे गृह-कार्य थालौं । तत्पश्चात अझ धेरै दक्ष युवा पिंढी राजनीतिमा पक्कै आउनेछ भन्ने आशा गर्न सकिन्छ ।

(This article was originally posted as facebook status by Dr Swarnim Waglé. We have reproduced here with his permission.)

Constituent Assembly term extended for three months

Members of constituent assembly sleeping inside the CA building

This is how the CA members spent the long night in the Constituent Assembly building...as the meeting got extended...by several hours in the night. click on the pic to enlarge it

By Phanindra Dahal

After hectic parleys late into Saturday night and wee hours of Sunday (today), the political parties struck a five-point deal, paving the way for a three-month extension of the Constituent Assembly.

According to the pact signed by top three leaders of the three major parties: 

1) the Constituent Assembly term will be extended by three months;
2) fundamentals of the peace process will be readied within three months;
3) the first draft of the new constitution will be prepared within three months;
4) the Prime Minister will quit to pave the way for formation of a national consensus government; and
5) the Nepal Army will be developed as an inclusive institution by implementing the past agreements signed with Madhesi Morcha.

However, it wasn’t clear when the Prime Minister’s resignation would come.

Earlier before the signing of the agreement, Samyukta Loktantrik Madhesi Morcha (SLMM) kept harping on PM Khanal’s immediate resignation. Continue reading

The last day of Constituent Assembly […if not extended]

As seen outside the Constituent Assembly complex in New Baneshwor, Kathmandu today. The CA’s term will expire today (midnight) if it is not extended. There are have been signs that it could be extended for a few months. (five pics)

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Monkey act?: Four ‘restive’ legs and several ‘resting’ leaves

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Communist Manifestos: Maoist Vs UML (United Marxist Leninist)

Two major communist parties of Nepal make their Constituent Assembly elections manifestos public this week. Read on before deciding to vote for anyone of them:

[Next blog: Wagle has been following the campaign trail of Maoist Chairman Prachanda for the past few days. How do people who were seen in Prachanda campaign rallies think about the man who led the violent revolution? Are they going to vote for him in Kathmandu-10? Plus, interview with the leader and his campaign verbatim.]

UML, In CA Manifesto, Proposes Executive PM, Ceremonial President

A major ally of the ruling Seven-Party alliance (SPA), CPN-UML on Sunday made public its election manifesto for the Constituent Assembly (CA) proposing to bestow the executive powers of the state upon the Prime Minister and to give just a ceremonial role to the President who will also be the head of the state. UML General Secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal publicised the manifesto with the slogan ‘Let’s establish a federal democratic republic, let’s build a strong and prosperous Nepal”, at a press conference organised at the UML headquarters at Balkhu in the capital today.

The manifesto has proposed to elect the Prime Minster under first-past-the-post (FPTP) election system and the President through a clear majority of the elected parliament. The UML manifesto has also proposed to bestow all responsibilities of the country’s administration upon the Prime Minister. The party, however, has proposed to entitle only limited rights and responsibilities to the President in his capacity as the ceremonial Head of State. Likewise, the manifesto has also provisions for a bicameral legislative body at the centre, unicameral assembly at each state under the new federal governance system. UML General Secretary Nepal said, “The elected representatives shall run the local bodies.” “We have forwarded the principle of developing the federal structure on the basis of ethnic, linguistic, cultural and geographical distinctiveness,” he added.

The UML manifesto, however, does not mention the number of states to be formed under the federal system. The party has said that the number of states will be determined later by the state restructuring a commission comprising experts. According to the manifesto, the first CA meeting will form a commission with the consensus of the political parties to draft a new constitution and to restructure the country in a progressive manner. Regarding UML’s economic plan, the UML General Secretary said, “We have proposed for the development of the public, private and cooperative sectors as the pillars of our economy.”

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Four Reasons Why Prachanda Chose Kathmandu-10 to Fight CA Election

Does Prachanda have a chance of winning? The answer is yes and no.

By Bishnu Budhathoki
the Kathmandu Post

Maoist Chairman Prachanda was born in a remote village of Kaski district and brought up in Chitwan district, but he has chosen Kathmandu Constituency-10 and Rolpa Constituency- 2 to contest the upcoming Constituent Assembly (CA) election. Why did he decide to contest election from Kathmandu Constituency-10 ? More importantly, what are his chances of winning ?

This constituency, with a total of 63,788 voters, includes Kirtipur Municipality and 12 surrounding VDCs. Over 57 percent of the electorate reside in villages and ethnic communities (Newars, mainly Jyapu, and Tamangs) and Dalits have a strong domination.

There are at least four reasons why Prachanda chose this constituency.

First, the Newars of Kirtipur have a deep-seated resentment against the Shah dynasty for alleged atrocity by Prithivi Narayan Shah’s troops during his unification campaign. Prithivi Narayan conquered Kirtipur only after a third attempt and it was there that he lost his key lieutenant, Kalu Pandey, and his brother lost an eye. So, when his forces finally conquered Kirtipur they unleashed unspeakable atrocities- something that has stayed with the local people as a “chosen trauma”. Continue reading

Election Fever Grips Nepal

Days after the government and the protesting United Democratic Madhesi Front (UDMF) struck a crucial deal on Feb 27,2008 (see inside if you haven’t already!) the political parties have started their Constituent Assembly Elections campaigns all over the country. The Maoists party who will be participating in the elections campaign for the first time after a decade long armed conflict remain the centre of attention for Nepalese within and outside the country. In his maiden campaign CPN (Maoist) Chairman Prachanda appealed to locals of Kirtipur Municipality and surrounding areas of Kathmandu Constituency-10 to cast their votes for himself and his party during the upcoming Constituent Assembly (CA) election to accomplish the final revolution.

The interest of the international community on the latest developments cannot be ignored either. More so, when is our neighbor India we are talking about.News has it that the Indian Ambassador to Nepal Shiv Shankhar Mukherjee flew to New Delhi night to brief his government on the latest political developments here.He is scheduled to hold discussions with high-ranking Indian government officials on the latest political developments including the situation in the aftermath of signing of the agreement between Nepal government and the agitating Madhesi groups. The Indian Embassy no doubt states that is only a regular meeting.

As some parties are now engaged in erasing graffiti complying with the Election Commission guidelines a trend of quitting the parties is on the rise. Six lawmakers from the Nepali Congress and one from Rastriya Prajatantra Party resigned from their parties and parliament on Monday to join the Madhesi People’s Rights Forum (MPRF).More here

Whatever the change of events the election fever has caught the nation. And it looks as the elections are finally around the corner ! Continue reading

My faith in NC leadership is dwindling

By Puskar Magar
Bharatpur, Chitwan
Currently in United Arab Emirate

The selection of Nepali Congress (NC) candidates for CA election has been completed. My nightmare turned out to be true. Most of the corrupt leaders such as Govinda Raj Joshi, Khum Bahadur Khadka etc. were awarded with the ticket. NC supporters like me are stunned by this decision.

This is a vivid example that NC leadership doest not recognize people’s voices. All sister organizations from Joshi’s and Wagle constituencies had written to NC leadership and requested not give ticket to these leaders. These corrupt leaders have not been to district for years if not months. Mr. Joshi tried to go to his district Tanahun twice but was turned away because of his misdeed. Khadka’s popularity has plummeted in Dang. Chiranjeeve has not been to his district Gorkha for at least two years. These leaders are not popular and there is rare chance for their victory in this election. Then, the question remains why these leaders were awarded tickets?

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37 parties submit closed list:Some 4,000 candidates in fray

Report BY BISHNU BUDHATHOKI, The Kathmandu Post ( Feb21,2008 edition)

Out of the 74 parties registered at the Election Commission (EC), 37 parties including those in the ruling seven-party alliance submitted closed lists of their candidates at the EC Wednesday for contesting 335 Constituent Assembly seats under the proportional electoral system.

After submission of his party’s closed list, Maoist Chairman Prachanda, flanked by senior party leader Ram Bahadur Thapa ‘Badal’ and Maoist ministers, told journalists at the EC premises that the CPN-Maoist list has several inclusive features.

“We have allotted around 51 percent of the seats for women, 37.8 percent for ethnic communities including minorities like the Chepangs, 90 seats for Madhesis, 15 percent seats for dalits, 12 seats for candidates from backward regions, and 87 for others, apart from several seats for independent personalities,” he said. However, the Maoists have not met the legal criteria in the case of Madhesi seats which should have numbered at least 104.

Besides the Maoists, major constituents in the coalition government the Nepali Congress and CPN-UML, and other parties in the interim parliament Rastriya Prajatantra Party and pro-monarch Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal submitted candidacies for all 335 seats.

Talking to journalists, UML General Secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal said his party has submitted a very balanced list in accordance with the electoral law.

He also reiterated that the election should take place on the slated date. When asked about the non-presence of agitating Madhesi parties at the EC for submitting their lists, Nepal said the ongoing dialogue with the Madhesi leaders is heading in a positive direction and hoped they would also take part in the election.

Minister for Peace and Reconstruction Ram Chandra Poudel said that if any political party wanted to ensure the people’s rights, it should take part in the election. “If anybody does not want to take part in the election, it is his/her right, but we want to integrate all and take part in the election together,” he added.

Similarly, the ruling CPN (Marxist-Leninist) party led by CP Mainali, Nepal Sadbhavana Party-Anandidevi led by Minister for Industry, Commerce and Supplies Shyam Shundar Gupta, Nepal Workers Peasants Party and People’s Front Nepal submitted the names of 100, 64 and 53
candidates respectively for election under the proportional system.

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Constituent Assembly Preparations and Maoist Celebrations

Amidst the preparations of the Constituent Assembly elections two months away, the Maoists celebrate their Thirteenth Anniversary in the valley today. The streets have been decorated with graffiti through which YCL (Young Communist League) offer their “Red Salute” to “Prachanda, the Future President” of the Nepal. The “Future” is yet to be seen as the elections are still two months away. And given the political climate of Nepal, anything can happen even in the eleventh hour. Keeping those possibilities aside, the Elections Commission has asked all the political parties to erase all graffiti by Feb 20. The Election Code which such comes into effect from the very date bans graffiti writing, painting on walls and putting up of posters and banners by parties and candidates at public and private sites in the course of electioneering. Feb 20, doesn’t seem to be a date in near future for our political parties as they are still continuing with their graffiti. The Constituent Assembly Elections has been for April 20,2008 after postponing it twice in April 2007 and then Nov22,2007. Thirteen may not after all be an unlucky number for the Maoists ( and the country) if the polls take place as planned.

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