KATHMANDU, June 1: The atmosphere at a gathering in the parliament’s State Affairs Committee (SAC) hall on Thursday suddenly turned somber as former lawmaker Krishna Kumari Pariyar broke down.
“How can we face the people after failing to bring a new constitution?” said Pariyar, a Nepali Congress (NC) lawmaker from Kaski district breaking into tears at an informal meeting convened by SAC officials to give farewell to former SAC members.
Pariyar burst into tears saying the people’s valuable feedbacks collected from far-flung districts “were finally thrown into dustbins”.
“People sent us with a mandate to write the new constitution but we are returning empty-handed,” she said, adding, “We did our best as CA members, but our efforts went in vain.”
Pariyar was not the only one to express distress over the CA’s demise on May 27.
Chairman of Rastriya Janamorcha Chitra Bahadur KC said he would feel sad when people from across the country would congratulate him over the phone on the ground that his stance that the proposal to restructure Nepal into a federal system would push the country into a political turmoil was proved true. “How can I be happy when the entire CA has been dissolved and I am doomed to return home empty-handed,” he said. “Now I am going back my home district as a person returning from a funeral procession.”
Almost all the 20 former lawmakers at the gathering were one on the opinion that top leaders of major political parties were the ones who betrayed the country and the people.
Former SAC Chairman Ramnath Dhakal, Rijwan Ansari, Jagdish Narsingh KC, Raj Bahadur Budha, Leela Nyaichyai, Raj Kumar Rai, Parshuram Ramtel, Ramjanam Chaudhary, Pratibha Rana, Sudarshan Baral, Dambar Singh Sambahamphe, Harish Thakulla, Savitra Bhusal, Bimala KC and Niru Darlami were among those who fiercely criticized the top leaders for failing to bring a draft of the new constitution.
All of them argued that CA members from across the political spectrum fulfilled their duties by preparing preliminary drafts of the new constitution and it was the top leadership that failed to do their duties. They termed the top leaders of all the major political parties incompetent, insincere and dishonest.
The members burst into laughter when UCPN (Maoist) party’s Darlami said that it was two years ago when some Maoist combatants were labeled “unqualified” but now things have come full circle and it is the leaders who have failed.
Ex-CA members wrap up their businesses at secretariat
As former CA members plan to return to their home districts, scores of former lawmakers were busy on Thursday to get their accounts settled and finish their remaining business at the parliament secretariat.
Several former lawmakers received their paychecks from the accounts section.
CIAA halts salary distribution
The CA secretariat stopped distribution of salaries and perks to former lawmakers after the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) corresponded to the secretariat saying the distribution of money was against the laws.
Under Secretary Keshav Babu Aryal said they stopped distribution of checks immediately after they got a letter from the CIAA. “By the time we got the letter from CIAA, we had already transferred the money to bank accounts of 410 lawmakers and provided checks to 60 members,” he told Republica.
According to him, CIAA took the move based on media reports saying the parliament secretariat was doling out bonuses to former lawmakers.