KATHMANDU, August 17: The government upon the request of Kamal Thapa's Rastriya Prajatantra Party is working to put the constitution amendment bill to vote only after Sunday.
Postponing its earlier plan to put the bill to vote on Wednesday [Aug 16], the government decided to wait for the Election Commission's (EC) decision about the legitimacy of the breakaway faction of the RPP. The EC is expected to make a decision on Sunday. “The amendment proposal will be put to vote soon in parliament. The date for the vote will be finalized once the deliberations on the amendment bill conclude,” said Law Minister Yagya Bahadur Thapa. Leaders said that House is likely to vote on the bill only on Monday.
However, the parliament started deliberations on further amendments to the constitution amendment bill from Wednesday. The amendment bill remains stuck in parliament since April as the government failed to garner two-thirds majority in favor of the bill.
Minister Thapa tabled the bill for deliberations in the House meeting on Wednesday. According to Speaker Onsari Gharti, 50 amendment proposals have been registered demanding various changes to the bill. Speaker Gharti postponed the House meeting for Sunday after UML lawmaker Rewati Raman Bhandari took part in the deliberations.
The UML lawmaker said that the amendment bill is unnecessary so the parliament should not endorse it. Stating that the constitution has not been fully implemented till now as many constitutional structures have yet to be set up, Bhandari said that the bill should dropped. “I wonder what kind of rights this amendment adds for the people of Madhes,” said Bhandari.
The next House meeting scheduled for Sunday will continue deliberations on the bill. The former government led by Maoist Center Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal had registered the bill in a bid to address the demands of the Madhes-based political parties.
The government has proposed forming a federal commission to suggest provincial boundaries and removing the chairpersons and vice chairpersons of rural municipalities and mayors and deputy mayors of municipalities from the electoral college for the National Assembly, proposing to include only members of provincial assemblies in the college. The bill was registered in parliament on April 11.