Is the parliament now back at work?

A country’s economy goes hand-in-hand with its politics. Political and civic freedom are prerequisites in the success of its people’s economic endeavours. In Nepal’s case, we have blamed political instability for economic failures, both at an individual and institutional level. The Covid-19 pandemic only worsened the dire need for employment opportunities. For example, every day about 1,400 migrant workers are returning to the country against about 300 workers going overseas. While the economy is gradually coming alive, economic growth required to support the livelihood of people eludes us. In such a despairing scenario, we should be thankful to the Supreme Court for averting an impending constitutional crisis. For the time being, ongoing political developments toward the reinstatement of the parliament and the formation of a new government remain unclear. As we wait for these events to unfold, it has become clear that the nation’s economic prosperity is on the backburner.

In fact, the internal conflict in the ruling party had long derailed the government from its self-proclaimed path to prosperity. The court verdict cleared the way to bring the country back on track. So, will the leaders at the helm of the nation, in the government and the restored parliament, get back to work? The winter session of the lower house last year ended with over 40 bills pending approval. Amendment to the Competition Promotion and Market Protection Act – 2063, An Act Made to Consolidate and Amend Customs Laws, An Act Made to Consolidate and Amend Laws relating to Exports and Imports, and An Act Made to Amend the Seeds Act are some of the key pieces of legislation that need the parliament’s immediate attention. One of the major reasons for the delay in the finalisation of the bills was absenteeism among the members of parliament. With the parliament set to be reinstated, will the leaders prioritize these pieces of legislation? Will they starting working on finding policy hindering people’s lives? Or go back to being held hostage by intra-party and inter-party conflicts?

Bidhyalaxmi Maharjan

Bidhyalaxmi is working as Research & Communications Assistant at Samriddhi Foundation. She is a Master of Arts student at Madan Bhandari Memorial College.

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