Parliamentarians call for more effective role of parliament
KATHMANDU: The parliamentarians have drawn the attention of the government towards a wide range of pertinent issues in the country and prodded for its positive intervention to address those issues.
According to them, the issues include wildfires in various places across the country, rapid spread of COVID-19, inauguration of roads of strategic importance and embankment built in the border area in Darchula along the Mahakali River among others. The majority of the parliamentarians speaking in today’s zero hour of the House of Representatives had appealed to the government for its prompt and effective response towards the issues related to fire survivors, COVID-19 pandemic and encroachment of Nepal’s territory in Darchula.
Yogesh Bhattarai demanded that the fire survivors at Dobhan Market in Taplejung district on March 31 be provided compensation and settlement at the earliest. Bhattarai shared that the fire had destroyed five houses and caused damages worth over Rs 80 million. He pressed for sustainable solutions for containing the fire in case it breaks out in the district as the cases of fire is recurrent in the district. According to him, as many as five incidents of fire were reported in the district in the recent past. Similarly, Rajendra Kumar Rai urged the government to make special efforts to control the pollution that is plaguing Kathmandu Valley and other parts of the country. He also expressed his concern over the damages incurred due to the outbreak and spread of wildfire in various forests across the country and called for putting in place necessary mechanism to control such fire.
Rekha Kumari viewed that the embankment issues in the Nepal’s territory were being a burning issue and urged the government to resolve it. Rekha Kumari was referring to the embankment being unilaterally built by Indian side along the Mahakali River in Darchula district. Renuka Gurung and Meena Subba opined that the COVID-19 risks were looming in neighboring India and it had posed a threat in Nepal as well. They demanded with the government to appraise the parliament about its COVID-19 response plans and mechanism.
They also appealed to put in place adequate quarantine facilities and keep health assistance desk in the bordering areas to mitigate the risk of Coronavirus infection. Mohan Baniya drew the attention of the government towards the narrow roads along the Karnali Highway. Also the problems facing the passengers due to the landslide-obstructed roads along the Highway. He also demanded timely maintenance of the roads along the Highway, which was an important roadway to reach Rara Lake area. Mohan Prasad Pandey also demanded that the road along the Siddhartha Highway be repaired at the earliest. Metmadi Chaudhary said that those involved in the smuggling of the sands and aggregates extracted from the Rapti River be brought to book. CPN (Maoist Centre)’s Purna Kumari Subedi drew the attention of the government towards the fire incident at Naraina in Banke district and demanded immediate compensation to the fire survivors. Janata Samajwadi Party’s Pramod Yadav suggested the government to streamline the government health facilities. CPN (UML) Padam Giri said that the government had implemented the Melchami Drinking Water Project and had catered to the need of the Kathmandu Valley denizens. The government, he said, was working to ensure development works are materialized in all spheres.
Nepali Congress (NC)’s Uma Regmi recalled the contributions of late Krishna Prasad Bhattarai in envisaging the Melamchi Drinking Water Project and his vision to fulfill the water related demands of the Kathmandu Valley through the Project. Another parliamentarian from the NC Divyaraj Bhandari said that there were concern and curiosity regarding the government’s cavalier attitude of the government for the welfare of the women while there was no any elections for the post of the deputy speaker for quite a long time. Lawmaker Bharat Kumar Shah drew the attention of the government to provide compensation for fire victims of Lumbini Sanskritik Municipality, ward nos 5 and 6. Bhairab Bahadur Singh demanded supply of foodstuff to Bajhang at the earliest as the district is facing food shortages. Ram Bahadur Bista condemned the military coup in Myanmar and wished for restoration of democracy there soon.
Rajendra Kumar KC said, although it was heartening that the water from Melamchi has been brought and supplied to Kathmandu denizens after long, Kirtipur area like Lalitpur and Bhaktapur still has not got water from the Melamchi. He called on the government to make arrangements for supplying the Melamchi water in these areas. Mahesh Basnet expressed his ire and lashed out at the ‘opponents’ of the government for what he said their unrelenting criticism of the government while not looking at the government’s ‘good works’. He added that the opponents prevented the government from carrying out its works in one or the other pretext. MPs Meen Bahadur Bishwokarma, Maina Kumari Bhandari, Yagya Bahadur Bogati, Laxmi Pariyar among others also drew the government’s attention on a range of burning public issues.
Make the House effective The lawmakers have also criticized the prime Minister for neglecting the reinstated House of Representatives and not giving it business. They denounced the PM for what they said his disregard for the parliament, the main forum where the people’s representatives discuss about the public issues and make laws. Bhimsendas Pradhan of the Nepali Congress denounced the government for making the parliament non-functional at a time when the important bills are waiting for the parliament’s approval. He also challenged the Prime Minister to come in the parliament and respond to the various questions regarding its status and works. Rangamati Shahi of the Nepali Congress also alleged the Prime Minister of belittling the sovereign parliament by not presenting in parliament. Raj Bahadur Budha Chhetri of CPN (UML) said it was the responsibility of all the political parties to take the parliament ahead together.