By Shree Shrestha
UWB received this article in email
At present there are 205 members in the House of Representative. Talks are going on in different circles on how to change the system of election so that every ethnic group will be represented in the new House. I read many articles regarding this issue. Most of the ideas presented are too complicated to understand and implement in the present context. I am trying to give simplistic solution to have proper representation in the House.
1. Keep the present 75 districts and 14 zones as is.
2. Each district will elect 1 member for the Upper House (National Assembly).
3. Each district should have electoral map divided into electoral map comprising of 100,000 people.
4. The electoral map should not be drawn according to geographical boundaries like hills, rivers and others.
5. Electoral map will be drawn according to ethnic inhabitants in the respective areas.
6. In general 100,000 people will choose 1 representative.
7. In case there are less than 100,000 of certain ethnic group they will be still allowed to elect 1 representative for the House.
8. If there are very small group of certain ethnic group residing among larger ethnic group it is not necessary to break them.
They will simply vote with the majority.
9. This way there will be fair representation of the people in the House. For example: there could be Chhetri (36), Brahmin (29), Magar (16), Tharu (15), Tamang (13), Newar (12), Muslim (10), Kami (9), Yadav (9), Rai (6), Gurung (5), Damai (4), Limbu (4), Sarki (3), Teli (3), Koiri (2), Kamai (2), Sanyasi (2), Dhanuk (2), Musahar (2), Sherpa (1), Thakur (1), Rajbansi (1).
10. There are other groups comprising of more than 50,000 but less than 100,000. All of them should be able to elect 1 representative in the House.
11. This way our House of Representatives will look like Nepal.
One foot note in my suggestion: For example most of the Muslims live in Nepalganj. So Nepalganj Muslims will elect their representatives according to their population make up. At the same time, if there are less than 100,000 Muslims in Kathmandu they will not be able to send Muslim representative. They will vote with Newar if they happen to reside within Newar electoral area. Newars will be able to send their representative from Kathmandu, Bhaktapur, Patan, Kirtipur, Sankhu, Bharatpur, Dharan, Dhankuta. But Newars from Biratnagar (for example) will not be able to send their representatives if they happen to reside outside Newar electoral area.
Shree Shrestha lives in Madison, Wisconsin. He could be reached at edeja1 (at)charter.net