KATHMANDU, March 24: Until now, only the people's representatives were involved in law making; they were the ones who participated in the discussion, amendment and approval process of any bill on behalf of the people. But from now onward, the people will be directly involved in any bill registered in parliament. People can give written suggestions on the bill. People can also give their opinion on what are the errors and what should be included in the bill.
Nepalis who are in foreign land will be able to give their feedback by going to the menu of the House of Representatives and National Assembly bills placed on the website called “Parliament.gov.np”. In this regard, the Parliamentary Study and Research Section is doing its final homework to put up a form for public feedback on the website soon.
While giving feedback, after clicking on the name of the bill, the form will open. It has been arranged that suggestions can be made in 250 words by mentioning the name, address, contact number, email of the respondent, said the secretary of the Federal Parliament Secretariat, Rojnath Pandey.
Secretary Pandey, who is also the head of Parliamentary Study and Research Section, added, “This parliamentary exercise is going to be done in Nepal for the first time. It is being practiced in countries with parliamentary systems including the UK and India. We are going to do it as a practice even though we have not made provision in the regulations. Seminars and conferences are also being held on this topic. Now we are going to put it on the website soon.”
There is also a separate provision in the Parliament Rules for taking feedback from the public. While making a law on a serious matter, the majority of members must decide if public feedback is necessary. Now there will be two types of arrangements in parliament to get the feedback of the general public.
First, as many as they want can respond to the bill, which will happen easily. Second, on the basis of political consensus, the controversial bill can be approved by the majority of the members of parliament and taken to the public for public feedback.
If the proposal to get public feedback on a bill is approved by the House, the work will be moved forward by setting a period for collecting opinions. There is a provision in the regulations that such a bill can be published in the Nepal Gazette and publicized through appropriate means.
The opinions received within the prescribed period will be collected and submitted by the secretary of the Federal Parliament Secretariat through the Speaker. In accordance with the provisions of the regulations, people's feedback on the bill has rarely been done.
Public feedback was taken on the bill related to Contempt of Court , 2071. The bill could not move forward after public feedback was received. The CPN-UML raised the voice that the feedback of the general public should be taken on the Citizenship Bill, which eventually became inactive after reaching the previous President. But it was not taken to the people.