CA panels to miss deadline

KATHMANDU: Almost all thematic committees of Constituent Assembly are set to miss the May 22 deadline of submitting their initial drafts of the contents of new constitution to the CA for the fifth time.

Till now the CA schedule has been changed four times, as the committees could not accomplish their task on time. However, the final date of promulgating the new constitution by May 28, 2010, has not been changed yet.

As per the latest deadline, they will have to submit the initial drafts by Friday, but only three committees — the Committee for the Protection of the Rights of Minorities and Marginalised, the Committee for Preserving National Interest, the Committee for Determining the Basis of Cultural and Social Solidarity — are ready to submit their concept papers.

The CA, according to CA officials, has two options - either to alter the schedule for the fifth time or start discussing the concept papers, which are ready. As per the latest schedule, the discussions will have to be over by July 15. Then the Constitutional Committee will consolidate all the drafts and suggestions, received during discussions, and prepare the first draft of the new constitution.

Tek Prasad Dhungana, secretary of the CC, wondered, “How can the deadline be met, with the parties showing little interest?” He added that the progress could not be achieved only by the pro-activeness of secretariat officials.

The CC headed by Madhav Kumar Nepal has also not given final touches to its concept paper. Though three consecutive meetings of the CC had scheduled to form a sub-committee to draft the contents of the new constitution, it could not be formed, as the parties did not show any readiness to name their representatives for the sub-committee, said a CC official. The CC completed discussion on the purposed concept papers today, but did not take any decision.