KATHMANDU, June 23: The National Assembly is all set to withdraw the controversial Guthi (trust) Bill on Tuesday upon the request from the government.
Minister for Land Reform and Management Padma Kumari Aryal has written to the parliament secretariat requesting the withdrawal of the bill.
Following widespread protests from pro-Guthi supporters, stakeholders as well as the opposition parties, and pressure from within the ruling party, the government had decided to withdraw the bill on June 18.
Residents of the Kathmandu Valley, especially those from the Newar community, had vehemently protested against the bill.
They argue that the provision of the bill to nationalize the property of guthis was an attempt of the government to interfere in the traditional cultural, carnivals and possessions of the locals. The bill also courted controversy for paving way to transfer the lands of guthis to individuals’ name if they have been using the land for a long time.
“I wrote to the parliament secretariat on Friday to withdraw the bill from the House,” Minister Aryal told Republica. According to the upper house regulations, withdrawal of any bill requires approval from the full house.
“The parliament secretariat has received a letter from the ministry for withdrawal of the bill. The next House meeting on Tuesday is scheduled to consider the letter,” said NA Secretary Rajendra Phyual.
The bill was registered at the NA on April 30. Lawmakers had registered their amendments to the bill after brief deliberations in the House. While the bill was under consideration in the upper house, stakeholders took to the streets demanding withdrawal of the bill from the parliament.
Tens of thousands of people in Kathmandu Valley joined the protest rally against the Guthi Bill on Wednesday demanding scrapping of the bill even after the government announced to withdraw the controversial piece of legislation.