Nepal’s poll watchdog has decided to remove “Hindu state and monarchy” clauses from the statute of the pro-monarch and pro-Hindu Rastriya Prajatantra Party, saying that they contradicted constitutional provisions of a republican system and secularism. The Election Commission’s (EC) decision sparked a protest from the party with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Federal Affairs and Local Development Kamal Thapa urging the EC to correct its decision.
“The EC has robbed the party of its soul by deleting a section about Hindu state and monarchy off the party’s statute,” said Thapa, also the Chairman of the Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP). The EC yesterday decided to remove the portion that advocates Hindu state and monarchy from the RPP statute, saying the sections contradicted constitutional provisions of republican order and secularism.
After an emergency meeting, RRP termed the decision as “unconstitutional” and decided to challenge it in a court.
“The EC’s decision to remove some sections of its charter was unconstitutional as the Constitution had ensured ideological freedom,” said the party.
The RRP has been campaigning for reinstatement of a Hindu state since Nepal was converted into a secular nation through a parliament declaration in 2008, when monarchy was abolished following the success of the People’s Movement.
“The RPP does not accept the decision which would forbid the party’s principal norm, and requests the EC to rethink over the decision,” RRP spokesperson Roshan Karki said.
The party has decided to submit a memorandum in all district election offices across the country on March 20 and put pressure on the government for the reinstatement of a Hindu nation from the first week of April.
The party would also register a Constitution amendment bill, demanding the reinstatement of the Hindu state and monarchy at the Parliament, and would raise a strong voice for the same, Karki said. He said the party has also decided to launch a nationwide street movement demanding reinstatement of the Hindu state.