Pokhara, April 26
The constitution has envisioned a federal structure based on cooperation, co-existence and coordination among the federal, provincial and local governments. However, the same is missing between the two levels of government in Gandaki Province.
Local bodies don’t follow laws formed by the provincial government and they do not inform the provincial government about the laws they have drafted. A case in point, Tanahun’s Byash Municipality did not consider the act issued by the provincial government when it formed its own laws. Besides, the municipality also dilly-dallied in getting the laws published in the local gazette. It was only following frequent prodding by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Law of the province that the municipality finally got its laws published in the gazette. It, however, has yet to send copies of the laws to the provincial and federal governments.
Likewise, the municipality has ignored the law of the provincial government that dictates how local meetings should be held. It has been holding meetings as per the procedures laid by the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration of the central government.
In another instance, Syangja’s Phedikhola Municipality codified and passed laws it required without following the legislative procedure. It has neither published the laws in the local gazette nor has it sent verified copies of the laws to the provincial and the central governments.
East Nawalparasi’s Hupsekot Rural Municipality had made 21 laws and got them published in the local gazette. But it hasn’t sent the copies of the laws to the central and the provincial governments till date.
There is lack of coordination between the provincial government and Pokhara Metropolis, let alone other local bodies. The metropolis hasn’t so far adopted the law related to the conduct of municipal assembly meetings prepared by the provincial government. The metropolis has got the laws so far formulated published in the local gazette, but has yet to send the copies of the laws to the provincial and central governments.
Syangja’s Chapakot Municipality, Tanahun’s Myagde Rural Municipality, Syangja’s Waling and Galyang Municipalities, Kaligandaki Rural Municipality, Parbat’s Bihadi Rural Municipality and Myagdi’s Beni Municipality are among other local bodies that haven’t sent copies of the laws they have drafted to the provincial and central governments.
Rural Municipalities National Federation Gandaki Assistant Coordinator Raju Poudel blamed the provincial government for the lacuna, adding that its inability to coordinate with the local bodies has resulted in numerous administrative problems.
“The local bodies are autonomous bodies. However, the provincial government thinks that we are its underlings. This is where the problem lies,” said Poudel.
Chief Attorney General of Gandaki, Rajendra Ghimire, said the provincial government was preparing to hold extensive training on law formulation in all 85 local levels in the province. “Though we’ve made a leap into a new regime from the old one, we have failed to realise the change due to lack of sound coordination among different tiers of the governments,” he said.
A version of this article appears in print on April 27, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.