December 26, 2018, marked the beginning of Nepal Federal Parliament ‘winter session’ at New Baneshwor’s Federal Parliament Building.
The third session of the Federal Parliament began with Speaker Krishna Bahadur Mahara’s welcome note, followed by a letter from the Office of the President about the session call.
This session, also known as the ‘bill session’ discusses drafts of bills and their endorsements. It seeks to amend or replace existing laws that are not in accordance with the Nepali Constitution.
As part of the proceedings, Nepal political parties’ leaders and members have already started giving their suggestions.
Deuba Storms Session With Allegations
On the same day, Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba warned the government of a ‘stormy session’.
Deuba slammed the incumbent government for its approach towards certain issues.
Starting with the controversial Nirmala Panta case, he said that the Government failed to maintain peace and security and alleged that it was responsible for protecting those involved in the victim’s rape and murder.
“The police are torturing innocent people in an attempt to extract confessions in the Nirmala case,” he added.
Deuba pointed out that the government was not honest in implementing federalism or amending the constitution. Adding further, he said that the government was not able to win the confidence of Janajatis, Madhesis and Tharus with regard to the constitution amendment.
He also listed the transitional justice process, civil servants rearrangement and purchase of two wide-body aircraft, among other government negligence.
Commenting on the civil service scenario Deuba said, “The government is trying to scare civil servants. It should have tried to enact a new civil service act through the Parliament without taking the ordinance route”.
“We are not going to let those who embezzled government money go scot-free,” he added while calling on the government’s approach to the purchase of the wide-body aircraft.
Criticism From Various Opposition Parties
Rashtriya Janata Party Nepal Presidium Coordinator Rajendra Mahato and Naya Shakti Party’s Baburam Bhattarai also joined Deuba in criticizing the government.
“The government should pursue a balanced foreign policy,” Mahato said while talking of government approach in dealing with international affairs, which he alleges has sparked friction in the international community.
Mahato also raised displeasure over the government’s opinion against lawmaker Resham Chaudhary’s oath of office and secrecy.
Dahal, however, maintained a neutral stance when he said that the opposition and ruling parties should work together to enact new laws and implement the new constitution.
“We cannot even imagine authoritarianism. We won’t abandon the democratic system because we fought for democratic values,” he added.