Monday, June 19, 2006

Interim Constitution Drafting Committee yet to get formal Letter

Interim Constitution Drafting Committee headed by former Justice of the Supreme Court Laxman Prasad Aryal are yet to receive formal letters.

Officials of the committee said that they had started their work informally even though they are yet to receive formal letters. The committee has told the government that it will formally begin its job only after meeting the talks team of both the government and the Maoists.

On Sunday, the committee members discussed what kind of help and support they should take from the government staff and whether the statute-making process should be kept secret.
“Even if we want to make the process secret, we will provide information to the people through our spokesperson,” said Sambhu Thapa, one of the members of the committee.

“We will start our formal job only after the government provides letters to us,” another member Harihar Dahal said.

The committee members discussed adopting the achievement of the 1990 movement and the best provisions of the 1990 Constitution along with the fundamental rights as the sources of the new constitution.

The government and the Maoists formed the committee on Friday during the summit talks between the ruling seven party alliance and the Maoists with the mandate of preparing the interim constitution within 15 days.

Mainwhile Convenor of the Interim Constitution Drafting Committee, Laxman Prasad Aryal has said that mainly topics like His Majesty the King's April 24 proclamation, the House of Representatives Declaration of May 18, the Government-Maoist cease-fire of May 26 and the seven parties-Maoists agreement of June 16 would be taken into consideration while making the Interim Constitution.He was Talking to RSS.
Convenor Aryal made it clear that the Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal-1990 would be abrogated after the Interim Constitution is made.Stating that an interim Government would be formed and elections to the Constituent Assembly held after the promulgation of the Interim Constitution, he said since the Constituent Assembly alone would be deciding the place of the monarchy, the king would have place in the Interim Constitution.
Convenor Aryal also said that an arrangement to work as the legislature would be made in the Interim Constitution after discussing the matter with the seven political parties and the Maoists.He said, "The draft of the Interim Constitution would be short.
The time is short. Still, efforts would be made to hold discussions with and take suggestions from the civic society?.Stating that informal discussions are being held although they have not received formal letter from the Government, he expressed the hope that the issue of the letter that they would be getting and the Committee's office would be finalized by tomorrow.According to Convenor Aryal, the terms of reference and the limitation of the Committee would be as stated in the letter.
In reply to a query, he said those eligible for getting the citizenship should get it. He expressed the view that topics like the local bodies and the National Human Rights Commission should be included in the Interim Constitution in principle.A six-member Interim Constitution Drafting Committee was formed under the convenorship of former judge at the Supreme Mr. Aryal on June 16 for preparing a draft of the Interim Constitution as per the spirit of the code of conduct agreed to by the Government and the Maoists.
Aryal is one of the architects of the Constitution of the Kingdom of Nepal, 1990.The members of the Interim Constitution Drafting Committee are former president duo of Nepal Bar Association Harihar Dahal and Sindhunath Pyakurel, the incumbent president of the Association Shambhu Thapa, former Attorney General Mahadev Yadav and advocate Khim Lal Devkota.
The Government-Maoist Talks Team that met after the talks held between the top leaders of the seven political parties on June 16 had decided to give 15 days to the Interim Constitution Drafting Committee to prepare the draft of the Interim Constitution and presenting the same before the Talks Team.
The Team will present the draft of the Interim Constitution to the Government-Maoist Summit talks as per the instructions of the Government-Maoist Summit Talks.

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