If the constitutional provision is anything to be respected, the main opposition should not raise any issue that looks unconstitutionalThe Legislature-Parliament is all set to settle the long-held disputes over the parliament regulations through voting if the parties fail to reach consensus on it by June 15. It has been nine months since the parliament formed a Nepali Congress lawmaker Radheshyam Adhikari-led panel to draft the regulations. But the panel failed to reach consensus over the strength of the Parliamentary Special Hearing Committee (PSHC) that conducts the hearing of nominees for Supreme Court judgeship, constitutional bodies and ambassadors. The main opposition NC and other parties in the opposition have been insisting that the strength of the PSHC should be 75 as in other parliamentary committees while the ruling parties are in favour of 15 as per the constitutional provision. The new constitution has a provision of a 15-member PSHC comprising members from House of Representatives and the yet-to-be-formed National Assembly. The NC is insisting that the PHSC must have 75 members until the fresh election is held as per the new constitution as representatives from the National Assembly cannot be appointed right now. However, the transitional arrangement has it that the tasks to be performed by the National Assembly shall also be performed by the Legislature-Parliament. Speaker Onsari Gharti Magar has already consulted PM KP Sharma Oli and NC president Sher Bahadur Deuba who is also NC PP leader about finding a solution to the disputed issue through consensus by June 15. On Saturday, she set June 15 the date for settling the disputed issue of the parliamentary regulations. Till now, the parliamentary proceedings have been conducted under the old regulations that have become redundant with the promulgation of the new constitution on September 20 last year. The parliament had hoped that the new regulations would be agreed upon by the Adhikari panel within a fortnight and it would be tabled at the parliament for endorsement. But the situation took an ugly turn after the Judicial Council headed by then chief justice Kalyan Shrestha recommended 11 names for the Supreme Court judgeship and Sushila Karki as chief justice. The Oli-led coalition has also recommended 21 names for ambassadorial posts. The persons recommended for the SC judgeship and ambassadorial posts are constitutionally required to go through the hearing process conducted by the PSHC. Their formal appointments have remained stalled in the absence of the PSHC, a practice introduced in the Interim Constitution and given continuity in the new constitution as well. It is shameful on the part of major political parties that they have failed to settle the issue clearly defined by the new constitution which states that there shall be a 15-member PSHC which would conduct the hearing of a recommended person on a majority basis. If the constitutional provision is anything to be respected, the main opposition should not raise any issue that looks unconstitutional. If the issue whether PSHC should have 75 members or 15 members is to be put for the voting the opposition is sure to lose the motion. Therefore, the main opposition should not make this a prestige issue and find consensus with the ruling parties as per the constitutional provision.
On the prowl Frequent reports recently about leopards straying into the residential areas of the city have been causing quite a scare. As such, the Kathmandu District Forest Office and Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park are considering using radio collars enabling the tracking of the leopards. So far, no census has been carried out of this wild animal in Nepal. These collars could come in handy for they would help study the daily movements of the leopards, their behavior and diet, among other things. These data could explain why more leopards are moving into the homes of the denizens of the valley. Although there are many forests in the valley it is believed that most of these wild cats enter here from the Shivapuri forest. The radio colors are fitted to them once they are captured and sedated with tranquilizers and examined. The exotic Indian leopards are mostly found in Nepal and other leopard species found here are snow leopards in the Himalayas and clouded leopards in the Mahabharat range. Unlike other wild cats leopards hunt both in the day and night. This endangered species will be protected by providing them with the required habitat after extensive studies.