Showing posts from May, 2006

40 Seats For Maoists, 25 For Others

It might not be a bad idea to expand the size of the House: 40 seats for the Maoists, and 25 for others, like members of the civil society, the DaMaJaMa leaders, youth leaders like Gagan Thapa. The total size would be 270.

Constituent Assembly: 300 Seats Of Roughly Equal Population

That could also be the size of the constituent assembly. One seat for every 100,000 Nepali.

The Maoists want the House dissolved. The seven party alliance is against the idea. The UML wants the local bodies revived. The Maoists are opposed to that idea. So we have to get creative and seek some middle ground.

And we have to remember, this is a short term thing. The real issue is not the interim government. The real issue is the constituent assembly. Let the eight parties prove themselves to the people, not to each other.

Right now the Maoists are missing at the center and the seven parties are missing at the local levels. All eight parties should be present at both the center and at the local levels. The concept …

Right To Property, Right To Free Speech

Nepal King’s Kin Feel The Backlash The Peninsula At least five people related to the king by marriage have had their land in eastern Nepal captured by irate local people who began distributing it among shanty dwellers ....locals in Khanal and Itahari towns in Sunsari district in eastern Nepal began forcing their way into the property of the king’s two brothers-in-law and three more relatives, asking landless shanty dwellers to come and build their homes on over 100 bighas of land....Suraj Shumsher Jung Bahadur Rana and Uday Shumsher had their land occupied by the landless people who promptly began building on the encroached plot. Three other royal relatives, Padma Shah, Ravi Vikram Shah and Krishna Vikram Shah faced the same fate. A resort in Itahari belonging to the queen’s family — the Royal Resort — has also been forcibly occupied by locals ....The aunt, Princess Helen Shah, her daughter Ketaki Chester and grandson Kapil Rana left Nepal last week, reportedly for Europe.This is a l…

Nepal Janajati Statement From NYC

For Immediate Release: Restructuring the State and Nepal’s Indigenous PeopleAt the eve of annual United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in New York City, a group of prominent adibasi janajati (indigenous nationalities) leaders from Nepal, scholars, professionals, students, human rights activists, and representatives of several adibasi janajati organizations in the US gathered for a day long deliberations at The New School University on May 20, 2006. Thirty participants focused on important contributions that adibasi janajatis have made to the process of democratization since 1990 and especially during the jana-andolan II of April 2006. The group also discussed crucial challenges and opportunities facing adibasi janajati and other marginalized groups such as dalits, madhesis, and women at this crucial juncture. The reinstatement of parliament and subsequent decisions to severely curtail the role of monarchy, declare Nepal a secular state and the promise to hold elections f…

Nepal As A Cutting Edge Democracy

Nepal As A Cutting Edge Democracy

(sent to Guest Column section)

The April Revolution was one for world history. During an online chat with Madhav Nepal recently I said as much: Everest, Buddha, April Revolution. It was all over the news on TV and in the print media here in New York City. When I got to meet Governor Howard Dean recently who chairs the Democratic Party I said, "Governor, Iraq has 27 million people, and Nepal has 27 million people. We have to spread democracy like in Nepal, not like in Iraq." He gave an agreeing, beaming smile. Senator Patrick Leahy and Governor Howard Dean are both from Vermont.

Something magical happened in Nepal in April. I can't remember the last time something similar happened in any country. Not in my memory it hasn't. The entire country was completely shut down for 19 days. That is no small feat.

And the revived House has continued with that revolutionary spirit. The House proclamation that curbed the king's power …

Bidya Bhandari: Power Woman

HoR endorses ‘historic’ proposal on women rightsThe House of Representatives (HoR) has unanimously endorsed a landmark proposal on women rights that allows acquisition of citizenships by the name of mothers and 33 percent reservation to women in all state mechanisms, among others. A sitting of the HoR on Tuesday endorsed the ‘motion of public importance’ presented by CPN (UML) MP Bidhya Devi Bhandari on Monday. The proposal seeks to end to all forms of discrimination against the women.Now, with the ratification of the proposal, citizenship certificates can be issued by the name of mothers and women will have 1/3rd share at all levels of the state mechanism. As per existing provisions, citizenships are issued only by the name of father for which identification of the father is mandatory. This had been depriving the children of single mothers from citizenships.The proposal has also opened the doors for annulment of all discriminatory laws in terms of gender. Women rights groups have bee…

Who Will Hold The Constituent Assembly Elections

The question is not if an interim government is to be formed, but when. It is that interim government that will hold elections to a constituent assembly. And the idea of an interim constitution is not that bad either. The country will have an interim constitution while the constituent assembly might work on the next constitution.

Maoists reiterate demand for interim govt, dissolution of parliament NepalNews

But just like the Maoists will not part with their soldiers, the seven parties will not part with their parliament. The seven party alliance needs the safety of the House. What that means is trust building measures have to taken.

One is for the parliament to firmly command the army. The proclamation that was passed to the effect has now to be implemented. The parliament should be able to declare war on the Maoists if need be using the renamed Nepal Army. On the other hand, the parliament should be able to punish any acts of disobeyance of the ceasefire, if there might be any down the…