After the dissolution of the Constituent Assembly (CA) many leaders of political parties including those representing the Caretaker Government and Prime Minister Dr. Babu Ram Bhattarai seemed to focus their attention only on how to draft the new Constitution by resolving the contentious issues. The revival of the CA or the new election of the CA or the Parliament members or intervention by the President, if possible bla, bla, … were some of the options made available to them to end the current stalemate. To the PM Dr. Bhattarai the new solution must not only pave the way to write a new constitution but also to help survive his Government as long as he wanted to. At present though the Care Taker Government was reportedly not allowed to take any important decisions while running the Government, he wanted to keep his Government more active through the use of tools like Ordinance.
The ordinance, the only instrument the government has for the time being to keep the Government live were used widely and appointed the Chief Secretary and others in different key positions by breaching the norms and values of bureaucracy though the system did not favour. The sad story of the Teaching Hospital has just been closed up. Prof. Dr. Gobinda KC succeeded in fulfillng his demand and end the political interference in the government hospital. He wished that the politicization in medical field, whether that be an appointment of officers for different hospitals, medical branches or institutions or any other aspect should be totally avoided. Nepal’s oldest hospital ‘Bir Hospital’ has become almost out of order. Similarly, other hospitals outside the capital including the one at Dharan were almost locked up. The ordinance, no doubt helps the Government to survive but at the cost of trust and faith of the people.
The local dailies on August 18, 2012 sold their headlines on the President’s rejection of the ordinances presented by the Prime Minister. The report said, the President refused to give his assent to two new Ordinances. One ordinance was related with amendment of certain laws concerning the public poll and another Ordinance 2069 B.S. related with the election of the CA members. Both of the ordinances were presented to the President on Shravan 12, 2069 B.S. or 27th July, 2012 by the Nepal Government for his valuable assent. The President rejected both of them last Friday, the source from the office of the President told.
The issue had heightened the confrontation between the President and the Prime Minister on the ground whether the step they had taken was constitutionally fair or not. The two groups, one backed by Maoist were of the opinion that the President’s rejection of the ordinances was wrong and unconstitutional. They were of the thought that the new supplementary Constitution 2063 B.S. has not given any right to the President to reject the ordinance/s presented by the Prime Minister. They still believe that the Constitution has not given right to the President even to think over the rights or wrongs of the ordinance presented by the P M. The President has no option but to give his assent in such case. Another group backed by different parties other than the Maoist opined that the President cannot give his assent unless he was satisfied with the proposed ordinance. So they were happy with the decision taken by the President. The Office of the President stated that the running government had tried to go ahead by hook and crook. The government has ignored to fulfil even the minimum constitutional requirements in the proposed ordinance. The Constitution speaks that the President could give his assent “if he was satisfied with the proposed Ordinance”. “The ordinance tried to overrule the constitution. It was full of legal weaknesses too,” the statement issued from the Shital Niwas said. “The Care Taker Government had added. other 10 ordinances on line to present to the President if those two ordinances were approved,” the source further added.
Was the ‘63Constitution indistinct?
Since the sense of the phrases and sentences were interpreted in either way by the legal experts, it obviously forced to raise a question whether the 2063 supplementary constitution was vague?
After the second 19 days revolt became successful in 2063, the 240 year old monarchy was abolished and Federal, Democratic Republic system of governance was announced. It was reported that when the 2063 constitution was drafted only some big leaders of big political parties had been involved in the process. They were fighting their best to possess most of the constitutional rights in the system by using their position and influence.
The big parties were like the main share holders of powers in the country’s political system. There was reportedly sharing of the big positions among them. The largest party of course had a lion’s share and claimed for ‘Premiership’. The Congress was supposed to have the ‘President-ship’ of the country. The CPN-UML had the post of ‘Speaker’, or the chairman of the CA. The supplementary Constitution was drafted on the same tune and the major power was given to the Prime Minister. President was established like a rubber stamp. He was put off by all his teeth and nails according to the spirit of the new constitution. In the meantime, the scribe was told that late Girija Parasad Koirala had become very anxious at that time for he was fully hopeful of becoming the Nepal’s first President. There was big struggle between the leaders of the Nepali Congress and the largest party Maoist. But Prachanda easily deceived Koirala by floating a weak presidential candidate like Ramraja Prasad Singh. Koirala, thus withdrew himself from the contest and proposed the name of Dr. Ram Baran Yadav for the President ship.
They (the leaders of NC, UCPN-M) had also signed in for many pacts like peace process and other on the occasion. More than 3 years passed by. One of the two big leaders Girija Prasad Koirala is no more. The details of the pacts were stored by the largest party leader/s. That caused a manipulation in politics. The present crisis thus was the consequence of the monopolistic attitude of those few leaders that left 30 millions people of the country far away from the State Law, political, economic rights and the securities.
About the author:
Dwarika Pd. Shrestha is a senior journalist from Nepal, who contributes to TexasNepal.com with blogs. Please follow his other blogs at dipeesh.blogspot.com