Special Committee’s bid to pass citizenship Bill

Kathmandu, November 24:

The Parliamentary Special Committee for Implementing the Declaration of the House of Representatives (HoR) is preparing a report with an aim to declare Part 2 that includes Articles 8,9 and 10 of the 1990 Constitution, null and void.

The report will be produced in the House on Sunday.

Once the House endorses the Special Committee’s report the mentioned Articles become null and void, paving the way for the passage of the Citizenship Acts Integration and Amendment Bill 2006 and also for its implementation once it comes into force.

The Part 2 of the 1990 Constitution deals with distribution of citizenship certificates, but it did not have provisions to issue citizenship certificates by birth, and on the basis mother’s name.

The new Bill has ensured such provisions to provide certificates on that basis too.

The Special Committee held an informal meeting and finalised the new Articles, which are to replace those Articles proposed to be declared null and void.

“We discussed and identified the ways to remove the existing difficulties for passing the Citizenship related Bill by the House, the ways will be made known on November 26,” said the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Subas Nembang.

The Speaker, however, did not clarify what those provisions proposed to be introduced were.

However, a source present at the Special Committee’s meeting today told The Himalayan Times that the committee has finalised the provisions to replace Articles 8, 9 and 10.

“The Committee has reached to a conclusion to declare Articles 8,9 and 10 null and void and also introduce provisions to replace those articles,” he said on condition of anonymity.

Parliamentary State Affairs Committee (SAC) had yesterday endorsed the Citizenship Acts Integration and Amendment Bill 2006 after a series of heated discussions spanning several days.

The new law is being introduced to resolve the citizenship problem of an estimated 40,000 people, particularly from the Terai region of Nepal. This is being done also in the light of emergency of resolving the problem before elections to the Consituent Assembly, scheduled for mid-June, 2007.

SAC chairperson, Hirdaya Ram Thani, told this daily that the House of representatives is planning to pass the Bill on Sunday.

He said that he is hopeful that the Speaker Nembang would put the seal on it the same day.