Nepal | May 25, 2020

NC lawmakers seek action against Prasai

Himalayan News Service
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Nepali Congress lawmakers stand from their seats and obstruct the proceedings during National Assembly meeting, in Kathmandu, on Wednesday, July 25, 2018. Photo: Still image from National Assembly Youtube video

Kathmandu July 29

Three lawmakers of the Nepali Congress   Dila Sangrula, Laxmi Pariyar and Pramila Rai — today registered a motion of urgent public importance demanding action against Jhapa based entrepreneur Durga Prasai for allegedly making derogatory remarks against Nepali female students studying medicine in Bangladesh.

Prasai is the executive director of Jhapa-based B and C Medical College. The movers of the proposal hope that the issue will be discussed in the House on Wednesday. They said Prasai had hurt the honour and lowered the dignity of female students studying medicine in Bangladesh.

The movers of the proposal have quoted articles 18 and 38 of the constitution.

Article 18 (2) of the constitution stipulates that no discrimination shall be made in the application of general laws on grounds of origin, religion, race, caste, tribe, sex, physical condition, condition of health, marital status, pregnancy, economic condition, language or region, ideology or on similar other grounds.

Article 38 (2) of the constitution stipulates that no woman shall be subjected to physical, mental, sexual, psychological or other forms of violence or exploitation on grounds of religion, social, cultural tradition, practice or on any other grounds. Such act shall be punishable by law and the victim shall have the right to obtain compensation in accordance with law. A member of the National Human Rights Commission, Mohna Ansari, said a complaint was lodged against Durga Prasai for making derogatory remarks against Nepali female students pursuing medicine in Bangladesh.

“Hurting any citizen’s honour is against the constitution and we have the jurisdiction to investigate such complaints,” Ansari said and added that the NHRC could recommend to the police to take legal action against Prasai if the investigation found that Prasai had made derogatory remarks against Nepali students.

Senior Advocate Surendra Bhandari said cases could be filed against Prasai under two acts –  Defamation Act and Public Crime and Punishment Act also known as Public Offence Act.

“Prasai can be sued under Public Crime and Punishment Act for defaming Nepali female students.  He can also be sued under the Defamation Act because his remarks defamed Nepali female students studying medicine in Bangladesh,” Bhandari argued.  He said under the Public Offence Act, Prasai could face a fine up to Rs 10,000 and could also be liable to pay compensation to the victims. Under the Defamation Act, Prasai can face a jail sentence up to six months.

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A version of this article appears in print on July 30, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.


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