Thursday, August 31, 2006

Constitution panel’s work ‘incomplete’

Constitutional law experts said the interim constitution draft prepared by the Interim Constitution Drafting Commission (ICDC) is incomplete and imperfect.

“The draft is not a perfect document as it has not adopted the norms and values of constitutionalism,” Purnaman Shakya said.

According to him, the document proves that the persons who prepared it lacked basic knowledge on constitutional norms and values.

Shakya was speaking at an interaction organised by the Informal Sector Service Centre and Constitutional Lawyers Forum in the capital.

“The draft has failed to address the armed conflict and other major issues,” Shakya said. “The draft also failed to come up with a clear vision on how to include the Maoists in the government,” he added.

Another expert Bhimarjun Acharya also said the draft constitution does not follow the basic norms and values of constitutional principles.
“It was a misconception of the members of the committee to propose the chairman of the interim legislature as the head of state at a time when monarchy still exists,” Acharya said, adding: “Another important issue is that the committee has tried to make the judiciary accountable to the parliament and the executive.”

Advocate Tikaram Bhattarai said that though the draft has some “very beautiful” provisions on fundamental rights, it has failed to reflect the spirit of the Jana Andolan.

Members of the ICDC Harihar Dahal and Agni Kharel have said that they had no option but to draft an ‘incomplete’ document and leave for the government and the Maoist talks team to decide on major political issues.

Another member of the panel, Pushpa Bhushal, said the panel would consider the numerous suggestions made while discussing the draft with leaders in the government and the Maoists to finalise it.

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