Discussion for sake of discussion useless, say MPs

Kathmandu, December 31

Lawmakers of the Development and Technology committee of the House of Representatives today expressed their grievances over their committee’s meeting saying they have to repeat the same issues time and again.

They even said government officials promised to solve problems related to those projects or issues, which were discussed during meetings several times, but there was no progress.

Today’s meeting was held to discuss road safety and transport management in the country with the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport and Nepal Police.

However, lawmakers said they needed to end the culture of ‘discussion for discussion’ which they said was useless. Chairperson of the committee Kalyani Khadka was speechless on the questions the members raised. It is indeed rare in a parliamentary panel lawmakers themselves shout that their discussions have been useless.

“Though, we have discussed road safety and transport management many times, the result has been the same,” Lawmaker Bahadur Singh Lama said at a meeting, adding, there should be no discussion for the sake of discussion.

He asked why the committee was discussing road safely and transport management issues again and again. The government should come up with a proper plan after consulting experts. “They should come to the Parliament if they face any legal difficulties hat we can address,” he said.

The committee has given directions on road safety and transport management to the line ministry and the police, but there has been no progress.

Another Lawmaker Durga Paudel said the meeting was not being held seriously. “The last meeting, before that and even before that we discussed the same topic, but what was the result of those meetings held time and again? What did the government do?” asked Paudel.

She said the government should be powerful enough to make a difference. “Otherwise, the meeting would be useless,” she added.

Lawmaker Lila Nath Shrestha also said that the discussions were held just to discuss.

Minister for Physical Infrastructure and Transport Ragu Bir Mahaseth said the government had asked the Department of Road not to open only single-lane road in the meeting. But Mahaseth repeated something that the panel had directed two years ago.

When Rabindra Adhakari was chairperson of the committee, he directed the government not to open single-lane road anywhere in the country because of increasing accidents. He also directed the DoR to open at least two-lane roads in the country.

Director General Rabindra Nath Shrestha saidthere were many single-lane roads in the country. The government has not implemented the decision of the parliamentary panel even after two years.

Revealing why the government couldn’t work as expected, Secretary for MoPIT Madhu Sudan Adhakari said they had less resources and overload of work. “All the roads in the country are not in proper shape, but we lack budget,” he said, adding, “We don’t have enough budget and human resources.

Explaining the problem of Traffic Police, AIG Pushkar Karki said it is difficult to run traffic management manually. “Technology should be used. It will make our work easy,” he said, adding, “Otherwise it will be not easy to manage traffic in the country.”

Lawmakers said there had been no progress on issues that had already been discussed and added that discussion for discussion was completely useless.