Kathmandu School Of Law (KSL)
in co-operation with Center for Legal Research and Resource Development (CeLRRd)

E-Bulletin (Vol 49)

 

Past Volumes

KSL E-Bulletin  invites feature articles for discussion on the contemporary issues. Selected article will be published in E-Bulletin feature section. We will provide  honorarium of NRS. 500 for the selected article. We, thus,  call upon the research based feature article with word limits (600-1000)

         Research Meeting in China

         Observation visit to National Forensic Science Lab, Khumaltar

         Residential Workshop on Dissertation Writing

         Interaction on Prosecutors' Manual

         Orientation for Journalist on Peace Journalism

         KSL Students appeared in the Nepal Bar Examination

 

Research Meeting in China

Upon invitation from Guangzhou University Research Center for Human Rights, Yubaraj Sangroula, Associate Professor, Kathmandu School of Law paid a visit to Guangzhou University, China to attend the Research Meeting under DIHR's funding program "Revision of Criminal Procedural Law & Protection of Human Rights in China". The purpose of the program was to finalize research tools (questionnaire) for interviewees, likely to be 6000 in total covering some provinces of China. The research program was designed to generate inputs for reforms of the criminal procedural law (CPL) of China, which has been a matter of wider discussion among actors of the criminal justice system as well as academics. In this perspective, the Institute of Law, Haidian People's Procuratorate, Beijing and Guangzhou University Research Center for Human Rights (GUHRC) have jointly established a platform to proceed with the CPL revision under technical assistance of the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR). The research meeting, followed after a 2 days platform meeting, was specifically aimed to discuss and finalize the tools of data collection.

Mr. Sangroula was invited as a Resource Person for the meeting to provide inputs and advices to the research team. In this course, he shared the experiences of Nepal, which has been one of very few countries in Asia to implement in-depth research activities in relation to 'the criminal justice system'. In 1999, with technical and financial assistance of DIHR, CeLRRd conducted the first ever comprehensive research on the 'situation' of the criminal justice system of Nepal. The objective of the research was to explore:

-         -baseline situation of the performance of the criminal justice system,

-         -consistency of the criminal procedures with international human rights standards,

-         -consistency of the legal framework with international human rights instruments, the prospect of rationalization, and

-         -possible plan of actions for reforms of the criminal justice system

This study was crucial in reform initiatives of the criminal justice system in the subsequent days.

Talking about the Modules of Methodologies Adopted by Nepal in implementing such research activities, he mentioned the unique method applied by Nepal for 'detection of problems and challenges' was the 'survey of cases'. In this method, 222 various types of 'criminal cases from various parts of the country had been randomly selected for in-depth analysis which explored the following information:

a.                 - Total period of trial:

b.                  - Quality of evidence or documents prepared by actors.

c.                   - Observance of due process of law in application of procedures.

d.                  -Quality of representation of legal defense by lawyers.

e.                 - Quality of witnesses used by the courts

f.                  -Quality of judgments

g.                 -Consistency of the practices with human rights standards. In this part, the human rights sensitivity of every actor was examined and documented. The findings had been accurate and precise.

The findings established by the 'survey or analysis of cases' had been triangulated by other tools. The tools used were Observation of performances of actors, unstructured interview, and focused group discussion to name a few.  

The questionnaire survey was less emphasized in Nepal for several reasons. Firstly, it is costly. Secondly, it generates only limited information. Thirdly, many times the concerned persons are not serious to provide precise information. It is more technical. It would be useful to generate 'quantitative' information, and as such may provide important findings showing trends. However, the objective and grounded research on law requires proven 'qualitative' data.

During his presentation, he focused the five modules of research framework viz. review of code of conducts of various actors of criminal justice system; review of criminal procedure and practices; review of laws and practices on 'filtering and funneling' criminal justice system with reference to investigation and prosecution of the criminal cases; time and motion studies reflecting on activeness and preparedness of judiciary in ensuring fair trial; and analysis of quantitative and qualitative data.

The findings of the research were thus analyzed around these broad thematic areas.

In the discussion, he raised issues on "Importance and Justification of Methods". His emphasis was on generation of 'qualitative' data. Quantitative information is necessary to identify the existing trends- which reflect on current situation of the system. However, the importance of Qualitative data is great in analysis of the 'standard' of the system, and drawing up recommendations. The presentation also discussed that challenges to obtain information from such tool is that it is time consuming and requires highly qualified lawyers who understands the scope of rules of procedures in true sense. Qualitative information, whereas, is important to identify problems, issues and required interventions.

Additionally, he reviewed the research design prepared by GUHRC and provided recommendations to re module a set of questionnaires.

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Observation visit to National Forensic Science Lab, Khumaltar

Asst. Prof. Mr. SBS Basnet, who leads the Forensic course in LL.M program at KSL, coordinated the field visit of criminal law students to National Forensic Science Lab, (NAFOL) Khumaltar. The observation visit was held on 24th Jan, 2006.  Mr. Jiwan Rijal, Acting Director of the lab, welcomed the team and briefed them about the establishment and functioning of different sections of the lab. He also distributed the leaflets and brochure of the lab to the students.

The students then made an observational visit to all the sections of the Lab including the DNA section. Upon queries of the students Mr. Rijal, who is also the In-Charge of DNA Unit informed that the DNA section is only focusing on Paternity disputes through blood tests as a beginning step. The lab charges, a minimum of Rs. 8000 as a registration fee for a DNA test but does not charge any amount upon the Court's order. Additionally, Mr. Basnet suggested that since the Police Department still has not trained the SOCO for collecting DNA evidences, he requested Mr. Rijal, to officially inform the Police Department to initiate it.

The four-hour long observational visit ended with an official photograph session and with Mr. Rijal's words of admiration to the scientific approach taken by Kathmandu School of Law.

Kathmandu School of Law is a pioneer academic institute to transform the traditionally taught Criminal Justice Courses into a broader prospective by initiating an independent course on Forensic Jurisprudence both in its Masters and Bachelor degree academic curriculum since 2003. This course orients the lawyers to rely on scientific evidences for proving the occurrence of crime and establishment of guilt during criminal litigation, thereby replacing the reliance on confession.


KSL Students and Faculties in Forensic Lab

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Residential Workshop on Dissertation Writing

A two days residential workshop on Dissertation writing was organized in 28th and 29th January 2006 jointly by the LL.M Department and Research Department of Kathmandu School of Law. The second year students of all the three LL.M. Programs actively participated in the workshop.

In the first day, Asst. Prof. Khagendra Prasai, coordinator of Research Department of KSL oriented the participants on various aspects of drafting of Research Problem. Mr. Prasai informed the participants that most of the research conducted in Nepal lacks a proper coordination in between the research problem and methods of data collection.

The program moved ahead with division of students into 9 groups for drafting individual research problem, which they presented among the KSL faculties. The second session comprised the fieldwork in groups. The participants visited different villages nearby Nagarkot for data collection in their respective areas of research.

In the next day, the participants presented their research findings of the first sessions. Each group was given 15 minutes for the presentation of their findings and discussions. Their presentations were observed and commented by Asso. Prof. Yubaraj Sangroula, Asst. Prof. K. Prasai, S. Gautam, & S.B.S Basnet. During the second half of the session, Asso. Prof. Sangroula oriented the participants on the various methods and scientific aspect of interpretation and analysis of the data. Mr. Sangroula made the participants aware by citing numerous examples on how the researches conducted by various national level organizations were misinterpreted.


Students in the community / Participants in the Workshop

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Interaction on Prosecutors' Manual

An Interaction program on 'Draft contents of Public Prosecutors' Manual' was organized on 28th January 2005 by Office of the Attorney General of the Kingdom of Nepal. The manual is being developed under Institutional Strengthening Project of Office of the Attorney General in cooperation with the World Bank.

The interaction program was inaugurated by Hon'ble Attorney General Laxmi Bahadur Nirala. The discussion program started with the content briefing of the manual by Prof. Dr. Rajit Bhakta Pradhananga, Consultant of the project. In his Key note speech, Rt. Hon'ble Nirala pointed out the need of such manual for professional and institutional development of the prosecutors in context of Nepal. He mentioned that the manual would tremendously help in capacity building of Government Attorneys to properly monitor, investigate and institute the prosecution. He called upon the participants to provide their concrete opinions and share their expertise in relation to the development of manual. After his key note speech, Associate Prof. Yubaraj Sangroula, Executive Director, KSL shed light on the methods, techniques and science of developing the manual. He highlighted on some inevitable components for effective manual such as problem analysis, identification of standards and guidelines to address the issues and problems to be encountered in professional responsibilities etc. 

Other speakers in the program were Drona Raj Regmi, Deputy Attorney General, Madhav Prasad Poudel, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Law and Justice, Raj Narayan Pathak, Senior Govt. Attorney, Surendra Pathak, DIJ and several other legal professionals who concord the ideas of Mr. Sangoula.

On behalf of KSL, we wish for the successful preparation of the manual, which can be a milestone in reformation of criminal justice system in Nepal.

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Orientation for Journalist on Peace Journalism

Centre for Legal Research and Resource Development (CeLRRd) organised a one day orientation with journalists of Kathmandu District at Hotel Royal Singe on 25th December, 2005. The programme focused on the role of media-workers in conflict transformation by encouraging non-violent alternative means of conflict resolution. Numerically, 16 journalists were directly benefited from the programme.

The programme was organised with objectives of sensitizing media-workers on peace-building process. It also instigated them to contribute in the negotiation process through pro-peace  information dissemination to bring the conflicting parties in the common forum to resolve their differences by non-violent means.

The programme was divided into two sessions. In the first session, Mr. Prakash KC, President of CeLRRd, welcomed all participants and resource persons in the program and highlighted on the importance of the programme.

Similarly, Mr. Baldev Chaudary, President of CLRC, a partner organization of CeLRRd in Udayapur, put forward ethical issues and professionalism in relation to media. He emphasized the importance of journalist for democratic movement. A draft media manual which describes the role of media-workers in peace-building process through the approach of peace journalism was distributed to the participants to facilitate the discussion and to provide theoretical and practical guidance to advance peace journalism in their daily media works.

The second session focused on thematic discussion in which three different themes were discussed relating to peace journalism and critical thinking. The first discussion revolved around "Scientific Mindedness". As a resource person, Mr. Rabindra Bhattarai, Assist Prof. of Kathmandu School of Law discussed on importance of open mind and critical thinking. It followed the discussion on "Media as fourth State". Journalist Mr. Raghu Mainali discussed on the role of media and its importance. Likewise, journalist Mr. Hasta Gurung discussed about "Journalism for Peace"

Mr. Rabindra Bhattarai, highlighted the scientific approach of professional work. He compared conventional and critical thinking and highlighted the importance of critical thinking for media professionalism.

In the scientific mindedness in professional work of journalism following issues were discussed:

         Open mindedness

         Critical mindedness

         Nature of information and its relation to facts and opinion

         Role of evidence in establishing truth by facts

Senior journalist, Mr. Raghu Mainali discussed the trend of present journalism. He stated current journalism trend as reflecting journalism and added that such type of journalism can't create any effect on ordinary people. He accentuated on the role and responsibility of the media to be deserved as 'Fourth Estate'. He said that protection of human rights and respect of human dignity are the main challenging job in the present situation for media workers.

Similarly, Expert on Conflict Journalism, Mr. Hasta Gurung highlighted that the peace journalism as always being a challenging and sensitive task, has become more challenging in this high period of conflict. He suggested that media should prioritize victim's issue in the conflict reporting, and made participants aware on not to re-victimize them.

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KSL Students appeared in the Nepal Bar Examination

The first passed out batch of LL.B students participated in Nepal Bar Exam from this year, 062. The exam holds high importance for law professionals as it is a professional examination for licensing lawyers. The students, now, will join the legal practice which community is eagerly waiting. Students participated in the exam are listed as below;

1.      -Narayan Chaulagain

2.      -Ramesh Parajuli

3.      -Lekhnatha Bhattarai

4.      -Pratima Kanel

5.      -Rajeshwor Shrestha

6.      -Mukesh Dhungana

7.      -Kamal Guragain

8.      -Krishna Katuwal

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Kathmandu School of Law          / Telephone : 977-01-634455/6634663, 2042268
Dadhikot, Bhaktapur                   /   Fax           : 977-01-634801
Kathmandu, Nepal                     /   E-mail       :
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