It has been four plus years that the people had been sitting uptight as regards the completion and promulgation of the new constitution reflecting the ground realities. The talks of consensus had become stereotyped utterances from the political leaders. It had reached a point of total dejection when the leaders finally pulled out a miracle of sorts by agreeing upon the five contentious constitutional issues, including federating the country and forms of governance. The compromise among the major parties now paves the path for the promulgation of the statute by May 27. It came about when only 13 days remained for constitution promulgation, and when seemingly all hope was lost that something concrete would materialise in connection with the constitution. The give-and-take formula, of course, came into play for this particular agreement, which has now to be put into the language necessary to be enshrined in the constitution. That this Constituent Assembly (CA), whose all-too-important tenure ends in 11 days, will promulgate the constitution is a matter of contentment. This is a welcome turn of events in the otherwise dreary scenario of constitution-drafting talks among the political parties floundering every time they sat down for crucial talks. The latest one just proves that the leaders had only been playing hide-and-seek with the aces readied to be placed on the table at an opportune time which turned out to be Tuesday.
As for the significant political breakthrough, it must be contextual to highlight the fact that the UCPN (M), Nepali Congress (NC), and CPN-UML have agreed on an 11-pradesh federalism. It is said that tentative demarcation of the pradeshes will be made, but the final shape will emerge with the yet-to-be-formed federal commission. Interestingly, UCPN (M) and UDMF who were for ethnic identity-based federalism, while NC and UML were rigid on multi-identity based federalism, have now agreed to let the Pradesh Sabhas to decide on the name of their respective pradeshes. The compromise formula turns out to be well-calibrated for the unusually volatile situation that has emerged in recent weeks, particularly the demand and bandh for an undivided far-west, and the Tharu demand, and others in demand for ethnicity-based identity. Going for the mixed model of governance — a directly-elected president and a parliament-elected prime minister — also shows the flexibility that the leaders concerned have shown. The timing for such has been well-orchestrated right at the eleventh hour.
As for the bi-cameral parliament at the centre, it will have 376 members with 311 in the house of representatives — 55 percent elected through the first-past-the-post and the rest through the proportional election system. The upper house will consist of five members from each of the 11 pradeshes. At this juncture, though riddled with controversy and shortcomings, this is the only way a new constitution can be promulgated on time. It, however, requires more sincerity on the part of the lawmakers to seek consent from all stakeholders.
Traffic accidents have become common these days with reports of deaths and the maiming of
many others from them. Many of the accidents can be averted if proper precautions are taken. It is sorry to note that the accidents often occur because
of the violation of traffic rules. The common man should be made aware of these rules and how they can prevent disasters. Thus, a campaign carried out to acquaint school children in particular about these rules is indeed appropriate. This campaign was carried out in several schools the other day. There are plans to carry out the campaign in such a way that they encompass all the schools in the capital valley. This is praiseworthy for many of the traffic accidents involve school children.
Thus, the school children will be taught to use rules like using the pavements, the safe way to cross the streets by using the zebra crossings and the overhead bridges. They will also know about the traffic lights. This campaign so far is focusing on school children. It would be even better to provide the common man with this knowledge so as to reduce the incidence of traffic accidents, some of them fatal.