Constitution amendment, Guthi Bill, Media Council Bill, Controversial vacancy announcement

‘IF PM OLI CANNOT AMEND CONSTITUTION, ANOTHER PRIME MINISTER WILL’

‘MERGER WITH SAMAJWADI PARTY IN NEAR FUTURE IS NOT ON CARDS’

Federal Affairs and General Administration Minister Lal Babu Pandit is no position to continue his position as minister, said Rastriya Janata Party Nepal leader Raj Kishor Yadav.

Minister Pandit has been facing criticism after the Public Service Commission (PSC) announced vacancy on May 29 for the recruitment of 9,161 staffers at various positions in 515 local governments, which the lawmakers from both ruling and opposition parties and Province 2 government has slammed saying it is against the spirit of the constitution and the principles of inclusive representation of all communities and genders in the local bodies. They have also said that the vacancy announcement breaches the rights of the provincial PSCs to recruit staffers at local units.

“If we review the decisions taken by the government, many of them have breached the spirit of the constitution,” said Yadav during a television interview Janata Janna Chahanchan broadcast on Prime Times television.

“The vacancy announcement by the PSC is a direct challenge to constitution. And Minister Pandit is the defending the vacancy announcement,” he added.

Following the pressure from lawmakers and Province 2 government, the State Affairs Committee of the parliament directed the government and the constitution body to cancel the vacancy announcement concluding that it was against the constitution.

However, Minister Pandit defended the vacancy advertisement saying it was completely in line with the constitution and was announced as per the operating Civil Servants Adjustment Act.

“The Federal Civil Servants Act is still under consideration at the Parliamentary State Affairs and Good Governance Committee. The parliament, after holding a rigorous discussion in the committee, approved the Civil Servants Adjustment Act—which states that after the adjustment process, the vacant positions, if demanded by the local and provincial bodies, will be sent to Federal PSC through the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration without any modification until the formation of Provincial Public Service Commission,” Minister Pandit said in a television interview earlier this month.

“Since the PSC cannot announce the vacancy based on the under-consideration Act, the constitutional body has to announce the vacancy as per the operating Act. The federal PSC, as sent by the government, announced the vacancy in line with the constitution,” Pandit had insisted.

But, Yadav said that the minister has no right to challenge the direction of the State Affairs Committee.

“Minister Pandit did a mistake challenging the order of State Affairs Committee.”

“Who is he? He is just a minister. But the State Affairs Committee is a mini parliament. I think Pandit has lost his mind,” he fumed.

“One of the reasons behind Oli government’s unpopularity is Minister Pandit. In fact, he has no knowledge of the Constitution of Nepal.”

“Therefore, he should be sacked immediately. Pandit has no moral ground to continue his post as minister.”

Yadav also said that Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli should heed the demands of the Madheshi people and take steps for the amendment of the constitution as promised.

“If he cannot amend the constitution, another prime minister will do it,” he said.

On March 6, the RJPN terming the government unsuccessful in matters pertaining to constitution amendment, failure to withdraw ‘false’ charges against those arrested during the Madhesh and Tharuhat movement and check corruption, withdrew its support given to the government.

When argued the Oli government has two-third majority and is strong, Yadav replied, “His strength was seen a few days ago.”

“Did not the Maitighar Mandala demonstration shake the Singhadurbar?”

Following the introduction of controversial Guthi Bill, thousands of protesters had gathered at Mandala–biggest demonstration after 2006 People’s Movement– demanding the withdrawal and cancellation of the Guthi Bill. The government on Tuesday officially withdrew the bill registered at the National Assembly.

“What he calls is the power of the parliament and the power of people.

‘If PM Oli is reluctant to heed the concerns of people, he does not have a future,” he said.

Yadav also expressed dissatisfaction toward the government’s failure to check corruption, maintain peace and security, good governance and structural transformation.

“Instead the government has tried to attack the culture and tradition, restrict press freedom and expression and control media,” he said.

Yadav also clarified that the possibility of merger between RJPN and recently formed Samajwadi Party (after the merger between Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister Upendra Yadav led Federal Socialist Forum Nepal and Dr Baburam Bhattarai led Naya Shakti Party) is low.

“We are holding informal discussions with Samjwadi Party. We are always open to unite with the parties with similar political background and agenda. But, merger with Samajwadi Party is not on the cards in near future,” he said.

RJPN has put forth a condition that merger with Samajwadi is possible only after Upendra Yadav sever ties with the government.

Related Coverage:

Vacancy announcement in line with constitution: Minister Pandit (With Video)

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