The late night meeting of the Constituent Assembly was postponed for 1:00 pm Tuesday, following strong protest amidst scuffles by the opposition CA members against the effort to table a proposal for a committee to develop questionnaires on the disputed issues of the new constitution.
As soon as CA Chairman Subas Nembang called the name of Nepali Congress Chief Whip Chinkaji Shrestha
to table the proposal for the formation of the committee, the opposition members left their respective seats
and rushed towards the rostrum. Chanting slogans against the move, the opposition CA members tried
to break the human chain of the marshals to stop the proposal from being made.
However, NC Chief Whip Shrestha was not allowed to reach to the podium. And, the marshals did not
recognize him when he had forced his way through. Sensing that the situation was turning hostile after
some time of commotion and scuffle between the opposition CA members and the marshals,
CA Chair Nembang announced the postponement of the meeting until 1:00 pm Tuesday.
Some of the opposition CA members resorted to vandalism after the CA meeting was adjourned, breaking chairs and microphone, jumping over the tables and throwing chairs towards the marshals, and hurling their shoes towards the podium. Scores of marshals were injured in the incident. Opposition lawmakers also hurled microphones at UML Chairman KP Sharma Oli and Vice-chairman Bidhya Bhandari,
The meeting today had begun at around 1:00 am with CA Chairman Nembang giving Baburam Bhattarai, the Chair of the CA Constitutional-Political Dialogue and Consensus Committee the time to respond to the queries raised over the report that he had presented on behalf of the Committee.
Responding to the queries raised during deliberations over the CPDCC report, Bhattarai said it was unfortunate that a consensus could not be reached on the contentious issues of the new constitution. He emphasized on the need to hold further discussion and bringing out a constitution acceptable to all, rather than sticking to January 22.
Only some points of contention were left to be addressed in state restructuring and forms of governance, he said while adding that almost everything in judicial and electoral systems had been agreed among the parties.
He also expressed the view that promulgation of the new constitution would not be difficult if the partners since the 12-point agreement came together. “The constitution must be promulgated through the CA, and that is also the aspiration of the Nepali people.”
Stating that the new constitution should not be decided on the basis of majority and minority, Bhattarai said the process of consensus is easy instead of the difficult and long road of process, which would not be right even in terms of the procedure.
Bhattarai also emphasized that the CA should not be made a reason for another conflict.