Govt withdraws Citizenship Bill under consideration at Parliament

NL Today

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Kathmandu: The government has withdrawn a Bill to Amend Citizenship Act under consideration at the Parliament for the past four years. Speaking at the meeting of the House of Representatives, Home Minister Bal Krishna Khand tabled a proposal to withdraw the bill.

Minister Khand added that a meeting of the Council of Ministers slated for today will bring a new bill. “The government’s main goal is to table the bill at the house by forging a new agreement and get it endorsed quickly,” Khand said.

A meeting of the Council of Ministers held on Tuesday decided to withdraw the bill saying to forge a consensus unanimously on the citizenship-like sensitive issue.

The State Affairs and Good Governance Committee of the House of Representatives debated the bill for more than two years, but it failed to forge an agreement. The provision on the bill was then put to vote after parties were sharply divided on the proposal to provide citizenship to foreign women married to Nepali men. The committee, through a majority vote, then approved a clause fixing a seven-year cooling-off period before granting naturalized citizenship.