Karnali folks seek special privileges

Kathmandu, July 26:

Karnali Rights Coordination Committee today sought special representation of the Karnali people in the to-be-formed government, state reconstruction commission and other important state organs.

Speaking at a programme organised in the capital today by the KRCC, Dr Shaubhagya Jung Shah said the people of the region should be given the ownership of local resources like forests, rivers and land.

He also complained that development activities were not being shared proportionally among all development regions of the country.

“Why should Kathmandu have another ring road when the Karnali folks are deprived of a motorable road?” Dr Shah questioned.

Presenting a working paper on sustainable development of the Karnali region, Dr Kul Bahadur Rokaya urged the 13 Constituent Assembly members representing the Karnali region to launch joint efforts and ensure Karnali’s say during the state restructuring process.

CA member Prem Bahadur Singh said Karnali’s concerns should be raised in both the CA and on the streets through civil society movements.

The Constituent Assembly member also demanded the formation of a separate Karnali state and called on people from Karnali to prepare their list of priorities.

The KRCC also put forth immediate, mid-term and long-term plans for infrastructure development in Karnali.

Linking the region with the national road network, setting up campuses in all the five districts, a separate university for Karnali zone, and establishment of a well-equipped hospital are some of the demands put forth by the KRCC.

It also suggested a model of state restructuring that includes central, state, provincial and local governments.

The committee demanded revision of the government policy to promote good governance, inclusiveness and discourage institutional flaws in the region.