‘People’s role in reconstruction must’

Bhaktapur, January 30

Chief Justice Kalyan Shrestha said participation of people in the process of reconstructing the structures damaged by April 24 earthquake as well as in the decision making process was necessary to make reconstruction sustainable.

Addressing ‘10th International Residential School’ organised by Kathmandu School of Law here today, Shrestha said the new constitution ensured many political, social and economic rights but the constitutional guarantee of rights would be meaningful only when they were enforced in practice.

CJ Shrestha said the sole purpose of the law should be to serve the public and the court’s responsibility was to ensure compliance of the laws. He said poor people affected by earthquake became victims of management and had the government enforced building code, loss caused by the quake could have been minimised.

Professor In-charge of KSL Yubraj Sangroula said if democracy had to be sustained, everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy their human rights.

He said the generation theory of human rights that give primacy to civil and political rights and ignored economic and social rights should be negated as all kinds of human rights were equally necessary to help human beings live with dignity.

Students who participated in the three-week residential programme also spoke of their experiences.

Participant Kundan Raj Sharma said millions of people were sleeping hungry every day due to lack of food and this situation should end.

Another participant Kritika Kattel said the definition of human rights should change and states should be held accountable if their inaction led to violation of human rights.

Abhinav Punj said human rights discourses should focus on development rights of the people.

Almost three dozen university students, mostly from law schools of Nepal, Bangladesh, India and China took part in the programme.