The Nepali Constitutional Dilemma

With the lapse of time, whether the history of ruling monarch will repeat in changed form? This fear hangs over the mind of common people, as the present Constitutional developments are not so encouraging.

suryabahadur singhBy Suryabahadur Singh

The constitutional evolutionary phases were continuously witnessed throughout the development process in Nepal.   The post second Jan-andolan,2062 (2005) period has provided ample opportunities for stabilizing and institutionalizing the institutional democracy, peace and constitutional reforms.  The formation of Constituent Assembly has raised the common man’s hope of period getting a constitutional solution forever.  The Nepalese masses have not forgotten that, the Constituent assembly was a mere declaration by the King Mahendra in 2007(1950) and the successive constitutions were formed by the related Constitution drafting committees.  At that time, the constitutional experts were hand picked, the rigidity, abstract law, limited constitutional resources, least judicial developments and impact of ruling monarch were major hurdles in the way of making appropriate Nepali constitution.   Along with this,  soaring socio-economic problems has obstructed a lot for experimenting with past six constitutions having colors, flavor and  impact of  then existing time.

The Constitution of Nepal, 2019(1962) which was in vogue with the Panchayati policies for past twenty eight years, whereas The Constitution of Nepal, 2047(1990) having elaborate constitutional base for democratic process have worked for mere seventeen years.  The existing Interim Constitution of Nepal, 2065(2008) have declared Federal Republic of Nepal and open a gateway for constitutional changes through Constituent assembly.   The assembly have six hundred one learned members from major political parties to frame a new constitution within a period of  two- years, but the chaos continue and fear of constitutional mishaps are grasping in the air.

With the lapse of time, whether the history of ruling monarch and concocted situation will repeat in changed form? This fear hangs over the mind of common people, as the present Constitutional developments are not so encouraging.  The withering symptoms are seen in the directionless discussions of constitutional committees, whereby the framers of new constitutions were giving more importance to party political agendas over the globally accepted sound constitutional principles.

The rule of law, competitive constitutional practices, creative, inclusive, culturally suitable Nepalese constitutional aspects covering entire nation are lacking. The object and reasons of various constitutional provisions lacks the fundamental aspects of Check and balance.   The discussions in the constitutional committees are loosing the track of pith and substance for evolving better constitutional provisions.   Every Nepali statesman knows, what sort of major socio-economic problems country faces?  It ranges from poverty to challenges of global competitions, but the aversion to healthy, sound and requisite constitutional provisions priorities’ blind path of party political policies.  Whereby, the constituent assembly members are harping on provisions solely directed by their party policy diktat overriding fair constitutional principles. It leads to present Nepali constitutional dilemma.

Comparatively, the resources for constitutional changes in Nepal are more favorable now.  The availability of fully trained Nepali constitutional experts, optimum level of mass awareness, activated Nepali Judiciary, exhaustive Nepalese precedents, live exposure to experience of democratic countries and world class constitutional documents at the finger tip or click of the mouse.  The post second Jan Andolan period have witnessed some of the positive changes initially, whereby changes in the electoral reforms, introduction of First Past the Post System, delimitation of constituencies, formation of Constituent Assembly, reservation to women, secularism, constitutional reformative provisions, exhaustive interim constitution, banning practices of un- touchable  and inclusive steps for Federal Nepal .  Later, the power play disrupts the process of formulating New Constitution of Nepal resulting into downfall of development process.

Basically, the developing nation should have a proactive constitutional provisions related to trade, commerce and finance.  The neo-federal structure call for elaborate inter state and intra state relations for effective development through appropriate social engineering.  The Constitutional document should be institutionalized, flexible and a panacea for developmental challenges. It has been observed that, the frequent over all changes in basic constitutional document results into instability, ineffective governance, disturbances, up rise of dictatorial faction, incompatibility and weak nation.

These constitutional challenges calls for resolving the apparent problems and accept the realism in the framing of new constitution of Nepal. Its letter and spirit should full fill the dreams of founding father of nation, martyrs, along with achieving vision for globally competitive Nepal.  Let’s hope these constitutional dilemmas are averted soon to keep Constitutional changes on right track.

(The Nepali vikram samvat year followed by year shown in brackets is year as per Gregorian calendar).





4 responses to “The Nepali Constitutional Dilemma”

  1. f f Avatar
    f f

    Hang in there, our republic did not start smoothly either, and even today we are challenged to reclaim the principles of our constitution from those who consider it no longer relevant,
    an American friend

  2. Sudip Avatar

    Main political parties in Nepal are quarreling for government to form. They have forgetten their main objective which is drafting the constitution for republic of Nepal. They are wasting very very important time. And, they are heading far away from heart of people.

  3. Dahal Avatar

    The priorities of Nepali leaders doesn’t seem like writing a constitution but being at the helm of affairs. What a sad situation.

  4. Anil Gurung Avatar
    Anil Gurung

    Governments can not do much more than govern, distribute the money a nation makes or create more debts….
    Historically speaking is too early and now is now. What is going to happen? Even international courts of Law or United Nations cannot help?
    This is the bad new an outsider has a clear view of ur mountain and guess what it looks like Colorado or the Alps.
    What makes this Constitution more difficult than another I miss the point or is the crux the Presidents’ Power or long live Pol Pot
    Now that all have had time to think Switzerland is good and in the end they also became like the rest of the european countries, America is not God and Indian Democracy….like Mac Carthy times when anyone with leftist sympathies was not authorized a visa.
    Remember these are the times of neo fascism at the same time the media show again and again the fall of the Berlin wall where people defied fear and a black President has to do the dirty work.
    A female indian journalist said on french tv there is a red tunnel going through Asia I think they wanted to bomb that tunnel.
    Then I take back everything I said because safety first and God Bless BB Prachandra dai but couldn’ t you have explained it to me?
    United Nations got it….

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