An Interaction of Policy Research Institute on Legislative Procedures in Provincial Assemblies of Nepal in Bagmati Province, Hetauda

January 31, 2024

January 25-27, 2024

Venues: Province Assembly Hall (with Province Assembly members and employees, and civil society) and Office of the Chief Minister and Council of Ministers (with secretaries of the province government), Hetauda

Policy Research Institute recently (25-27 January 2024) hosted a comprehensive discussion on the current state of Bagmati Province’s legislative functions in Hetauda, the province capital. The institute brought together a wide group of stakeholders to inquire into the ongoing difficulties and challenges confronting the province assembly and its respective administration, as well as to devise solutions to overcome such challenges. The discussion session was the first of a series of programs held by the Institute throughout Nepal’s seven provinces to examine the state of implementation of legislative powers of the Provincial Assemblies. Dr. Mukti Ram Rijal, a Senior Research Fellow at the institute, welcomed the attendees and discussed the study’s key aims and themes. Mr. Krishna Prasad the Sapkota, a former member of the Constituent Assembly, conducted the discussion, while Mr. Ashok Pandey, an Associate Research Fellow at the institute, and Mr. Purushottam Nepal, a consultant for the institute, took notes. Meanwhile, Mr. Kanchan Gautam, a research intern at the institute, assisted with the management of the program.

The discussions emphasized the importance of collaboration among governments, civic society, and specialists in overcoming problems and strengthening provincial legislative powers. Furthermore, the delegates from the state assembly emphasized Bagmati Province’s noteworthy legislative achievements. These include successfully organizing assembly meetings without worrying about quorum, passing a record number of bills among all provinces, and actively functioning parliamentary committees that confer with experts.

Further, suggestions were made to enhance the assembly’s autonomy, improve resource allocation by the government, and establish a dedicated service group accountable to the province government itself.

Questions were raised regarding the assembly’s autonomy, resource allocation, and especially regarding inter-governmental coordination and legislative operations.

Secretaries of various ministries reported issues concerning clarity in laws owing to ministerial changes. They additionally talked about the efforts made to improve inter-governmental collaboration.

Civil society identified challenges faced by the state assembly such as federal-provincial conflicts, a lack of public awareness regarding state laws, and challenges related to administration in the federal system in Nepal.

Guests present (Bagmati Province):

  • Hon. Speaker Mr. Bhuwan Kumar Pathak, Bagmati Pradesh Assembly
  • Hon. Madhusudan Paudel, Chief Whip, NCP UML
  • Hon. Ekalal Shrestha, CPN UML
  • Hon. Laxmidevi Shrestha, Nepali Congress,
  • Hon. Gita Gurung, Agricultural Health Committee, Nepali Congress
  • Hon. Prem Bahadur Pulami, Maoist
  • Hon. Thakur Prasad Dhakal, CPN Maoist

Employees at Province Assembly:

  • Poorna Bahadur Darzi
  • Ripesh Dahal
  • Ganga Lamichhane
  • Krishnahari Khadka,
  • Manuka Ghimire
  • Sundar Baskota
  • Umesh Thapa
  • Hima Neupane

Discussion with secretaries

  • Nischal Raj Pandey, Secretary, Chief Minister, and Cabinet Office
  • Prakashraj Dahal, Secretary, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Planning
  • Harisharan Pudasaini, Secretary, Ministry of Culture and Tourism
  • Rajendra Kumar KC, Secretary, Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies
  • Purna Bahadur Darzi, Secretary, Provincial Assembly Office, Bagmati Province
  • Dhruv Gaida, Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs and Law
  • Indradev Bhatt, Secretary, Water, Ministry of Power and Irrigation
  • Nar Bahadur Thapa, Vice Chairman, State Planning Commission,
  • Rajendra Koirala, Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development
  • Sujan Bhandari, Ministry of Infrastructure Development
  • Gyan Bahadur
  • Khupiram Adhikari
  • Hari Upadhyay, Chief Accounts Controller, Office of Province Controller of Accounts
  • Ripesh Dahal, Provincial Assembly Secretariat

Discussions with citizen groups

  • Asmi Lamichhane
  • Dr. Ramachandra Sapkota
  • Sabina Tamang
  • Ram Bista
  • Suresh Shrestha
  • Kishore Dahal
  • Arati Pathak