Kathmandu, July 17
Six bills prepared to replace old civil and penal codes of the country remain pending in the Parliament.
The Legislation Committee of the Parliament has finished debate on six bills — Civil Code Bill, Penal Code Bill, Criminal Procedure Code Bill, Civil Procedure Code Bill, Quantum of Punishment Bill and the Bill to Repeal Country Code (Muluki Ain), and yet the House has not passed these bills. The Legislation Committee had submitted these bills to the Speaker three months ago after holding months-long discussion on the bills. “I don’t understand why these bills that are ready for passing are not being put to vote,” said CPN-UML lawmaker Rewati Raman Bhandari, a member of the Legislation Committee.
He also said that he and Nepali Congress lawmaker Radheshyam Adhikari met Speaker Onsari Gharti Magar and Secretary General of Parliament Secretariat Manohar Prasad Bhattarai last week and urged them to expedite passage of the bills.
“In the meeting, both the Speaker and the Secretary General told us that a top political leader had instructed them to halt the process of passing the bills, but both of them refused to name the leader,” Bhandari said.
Bhandari said some leaders did not understand the benefit of passing the bills as soon as possible. The bills have several provisions which could bring about major changes in the country’s civil and criminal law system. According to lawmaker Adhikari, the bills had proposed to make timely changes in criminal and civil law, categorising crime and proposing stringent punishment for heinous crimes.
“This is a decade-long effort to replace the old civil and penal codes with new ones”, said Adhikari. He also informed THT that former Chief Justices Khil Raj Regmi and Kalyan Sherstha had taken initiatives to draft these bills. “We have been trying to pass the bill since the first Constituent Assembly,” he said.
A version of this article appears in print on July 18, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.