National consensus need of hour: Lawyers

LALITPUR: Advocates on Monday urged political parties to forge national consensus to solve the current political crisis.

Ram Krishna Chitrakar, CA member and lawyer, accusing the political parties for failing to work as per the mandate of Jana Aandolan II, claimed that the bigger parties were dominating the smaller parties. He said it was essential to forge consensus among political parties to lead the peace process to a logical end by drafting the new constitution on schedule.

Stating that the current political crisis was the result of the government's unilateral move to sack the army chief, he urged all the parties to respect the decision of the Supreme Court on the matter.

Purna Man Shakya, a constitution expert, stating that the sovereignty of the state is vested in the citizens, said the government had to respect civilian supremacy. He said a proper system of checks and balances had to be in place to ensure that the organs of the state functioned in a democratic manner. Accusing the Maoists of short-sightedness and undemocratic behaviour, he said that the democratic parties had to function in accordance with constitutional norms and practices.

Raman Kumar Shrestha, general secretary of Nepal Bar Association (NBA), opined that the people had the right to speak against the decision of judiciary. He said the new constitution should be people-friendly unlike the constitution of 1990 that could not stand the test of time.

Satish Krishna Kharel, advocate and former general secretary of NBA, said the Maoists had a myopic political vision but had taken the right step by resigning. "We expect the new constitution to limit the rights and duties of the President," said Kharel. He, however, said the Maoists' support would be crucial to the drafting of the new constitution.