Legal riddle to form new govt

KATHMANDU: Having a consensus government as envisaged by Article 38 (1) of the Interim Constitution been next to impossible, the new government is likely to be formed on a majority basis.

Legal experts said forming a coalition excepting the UCPN-Maoist would be impossible if the political parties could not garner majority as provisioned by Article 38 (2) of the Constitution.

The provision to from a majority government was introduced in the Constitution through the fifth amendment.

Earlier, forming a consensus government or selecting the prime minister through a two-third majority of the parliament was mandatory.

"There is no option to forming a consensus government for a lasting peace," former NBA President Shambhu Thapa said. "Peace cannot prevail without the cooperation of the Maoists."

Lawyer-turned-Maoist CA member Eak Raj Bhandari, however, said though a consensus government was essential, his party would not join the next government. "Since we are not joining the government, Article 38 (2) will automatically come to effect ruling the formation a majority government," he added.

The CA member said the army-government row and the intervention of the President had set a bad precedent in national politics. "Everybody should be aware of it," he added. "The President committed a blunder."

Former vice-president of Nepal Bar Association Ram Prasad Shrestha also agreed that the government should be formed on a majority basis. "Considering the seats Maoists have in the parliament, it will be tough for other parties to garner enough support," he added.