Kathmandu: A comprehensive study on Nepal’s journey from exclusion to inclusion generally covers the period starting with the prelude to the People’s Movement II till the end of the summer session of federal parliament in 2019.
The study From Exclusion to Inclusion: Crafting a New Legal Regime in Nepal (2022) looks at how the Comprehensive Peace Accord of 2006 and the adoption of the Interim Constitution in 2007 set the stage for the creation of an inclusive Nepali state.
It analyzes how the two Constituent Assemblies elected to draft a new constitution for Nepal dealt with the question of inclusion while dealing in detail with the provisions in the 2015 Constitution that ensure inclusive practices.
“The most pressing issue facing Nepal in its recent history has arguably been the exclusion of women and various social groups from the mainstream of state and society. The story of their marginalization in all spheres of public life—social, political, economic, and cultural—has been the dominant feature of the political discourse in the country for over two decades,” said Dr Bipin Adhikari, who is the lead researcher of the book. “At the same time various legislative devices have been introduced over the years to ensure that previously excluded groups are brought into the mainstream of the Nepali polity and society.”
Researched by Bipin Adhikari, Deepak Thapa, Bandita Sijapati and Sudeshna Thapa with Rakshya Chalise and Pooja Chaudhary, the study delves into the constitutional, legal and policy developments related to the promotion of inclusion, in its broadest sense. “The analysis in the book is mainly derived by reviewing relevant national laws and policies as well as, when required, Supreme Court decisions, international human rights treaties, declarations, UN resolutions and other instruments ratified by the government of Nepal,” said Sudeshna Thapa another researcher of the book.
The study concludes that while Nepal has come a long way, the State’s approach and the resultant experiences thus far indicate that although the government has, in principle, accepted inclusion as its primary objective, it has yet to adopt it in practice. Despite the number of provisions, many of which are very progressive in terms of enhancing both individual and group rights, the country has a long way to go in terms of their effective implementation.
Published by the Social Science Baha, the study also provides recommendations on possible ways forward by highlighting key elements and issues that need to be resolved in order to ensure that Nepal becomes an inclusive nation-state for all its people while acknowledging that Nepal’s journey towards inclusion depends, to a great extent, on the quality of democracy and constitutionalism it will achieve on the foundation of the Constitution of Nepal (2015).
According to Kathmandu University vice chancellor Professor Bhola Thapa, who has contributed a foreword to the study, this volume will serve as an easy reference for all researchers and practitioners in this area. “The Government of Nepal and its policymakers are certainly going to be the principal beneficiaries of this work,” he writes.