HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: The National Identity Card Management Centre is all set to forward the National Identity Card Bill to Cabinet after receiving a go-ahead from the Ministry of Law and Justice.
The Bill, which was gathering dust at the ministry a year after former Minister Brijesh Kumar Gupta stood against it, is now going to be forwarded to the Cabinet, which will then table it in Parliament.
A source at the Ministry of Home Affairs said Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai himself approved the Bill on behalf of the Law Ministry.
“We have received the NID Bill draft with the permission to take if forward. Within the next week we will sent it to the Cabinet,” said Narendra Dahal, executive director at the centre.
The NID card Act will provide the legal basis for the government to issue the ID cards to all citizens. Former Law minister Gupta had rejected the project draft Bill repeatedly saying that political consensus was needed to proceed further.
The bid document for the NID card project is about to be completed, said to Dahal. Earlier, a Canadian International Smart card consultant hired to prepare a Detailed Project Report of the multi-million-dollar scheme had submitted the document to the government.
Two years ago, the Cabinet had decided to issue machine readable cards to all citizens with the aim of replacing handwritten citizenship certificates. However, Madhes-based parties have been objecting to the idea, insisting that issues of citizenship in the Tarai should be resolved first.
Government had announced that it will issue four lakh multi-purpose biometric ID cards in the first phase this fiscal.