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

 

News

       

KSL bags two awards in Regional Moot Court Competition

KSL successfully bagged two awards in the 3rd Henry Dunant Memorial Regional Moot Court Competition for South Asia. Students of KSL, Ms. Antara Singh and Mr. Barun Ghimire both studying in LL.B 3rd Year, bagged awards of Best Mooter, and Best Researcher respectively. 

A team of three students- Antara Singh, Barun Ghimire and Mr. John Karki participated in the competition, held from 26th-28th Oct, 2007 in New Delhi, India. Assoc. Prof. Geeta Pathak served as Coach and accompanied the students.

The International Committee of the Red Cross, and the Indian Society of International Law every had organized the competition. The aim of the competition was to orient and test law students in the subject of international humanitarian law. The students have to moot according to the norms of the Statute of the International Criminal Court.

This year, 18 participants from six countries, viz. Bangladesh, India, Iran, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, had competed in the moot. The competition was held on a case of an armed conflict that had contentious issues over matters of internal vs. international armed conflict, rape, destruction of cultural property, use of poisonous gas in armed conflict, jurisdictions, and issues of merit.

The news of the awards was well covered in official website of ICRC and was also published in The Rising Nepal on Oct 30th, 2007 issue. In an ‘Welcome-home and Experience Sharing Program’ organized by KSL Human Rights Law Students Society, on 15th Nov, 2007, the three participants shared their first hand perspectives on the competition they experienced. The strengths and weaknesses of the Nepalese team as well as of the other countries, from which Nepal could learn, were well discussed, so as to encourage students to participate next year for the competition with greater zeal and vigour.

-   Antara Singh

(Participant of the Moot Court Competition)


Team from KSL

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South Asian Regional Conference on Legal Education

South Asian Regional Conference on Legal Education held from 2nd-5th Nov. 2007, in New Delhi, India successfully concluded adopting the following resolutions:

  • incorporation of common curricula of legal education in universities of South Asian Region

  • Establishment of South Asian Law Center at Kathmandu Nepal

  • initiation to establish South Asian Law University

  • continuation of interaction and exchange programmes of students and faculty involved in legal education

  • giving priority on education on issues of trafficking in all universities

  • initiation of package programs like organizing of the residential programs in which the law schools of the South Asian region and other countries would participate

It was further concluded that the upcoming General Assembly of SALS Forum in March 2008 would develop and adopt the strategic approach and interventions to implement the resolutions passed.

The program was organized by University School of Law and Legal Studies, Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, one of the members of SALS Forum. The Conference aimed at disseminating information and activities conducted by SALS Forum in different parts of the South Asian Region. The conference also intended to develop a common curriculum of legal education over the South Asian region, and plan for interaction/exchange programmes for the welfare of the law professors, students and the law schools in totality. Law teachers and students, professors, dignitaries from different walks of life from several countries, viz. Afghanistan, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Maldives and Sri Lanka had participated in the conference.

Country reports on their respective legal education systems, problems, strengths and weaknesses were discussed in the conference. Dr. Yubaraj Sangroula, Executive Director of KSL, made a key presentation on legal education: its modality, paradigm and methods. The program ended with conclusive resolutions passed by the participants, which was presented in the press conference. From KSL, besides Dr. Sangroula, Asso. Prof. Geeta Pathak and three students participating in the moot court had also participated in the conference.

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Field Research on ESDR

As a follow up of Economic, Social and Development Rights (ESDR) activity, LL.B students of KSL conducted a research on 'Impact analysis on living standard of people having different level of income with special reference with price hike in petroleum products." The study was primarily aimed to critically analyze the impacts of fluctuating exorbitant price of petroleum products on general people affecting their socio economic condition. A team of 37 students including members of 4th ESDR Residential School conducted the research. The finding of the research is being developed.

 

Feature Article

 

 

 

 

Constitution must be Able to Guarantee Basic Liberties Uninfringeable in Any Circumstance

- By Assoc. Prof. Yubaraj Sangroula, Ph.D.

A society without basic liberties is nothing but a slaves’ society. But the whole chunk of human civilization has unfolded out of conscious struggle for freedoms, and all conditions in political society that thrashed basic liberties are defeated by incessant inspiration of civil society for greater and enriched freedoms. The scheme and design by any individual or institution are thus bound to be ultimately crumbled down; they are never sustainable. No society or nation can survive without a vibrant and freed body of civilians. As opposed to some pessimistic cries, Nepal’s future is bright and awesomely potential of emerging as a matured and cultured nation state provided that some formidable problems are properly addressed.

An in-depth and critical analysis of the past political affairs unfolds that the Nepalese society is passing through a bitter struggle between regressive and progressive forces, though the struggle is largely clandestine. This struggle has mainly centered on ‘ill motif’ of conventional feudal force that intends to continue being in power as antithesis to basic liberties. For the last three years, this struggle has largely surfaced due to massive growth of consciousness of the civil society to basic liberties. This is what an interesting development mounting in the political scenario of the Nepalese society; it is no longer feasible to rule the Nepalese society by a power-block, group or institution with the help of a clandestine power management system. Unlike during the Panchayati regime, in the post 1990 movement era every power block is exposed to the eyes of the Nepalese people. If one looks from this perspective, last five years were crucial in the history of the Nepalese politics in the sense that the clandestine power centered politics came to its zenith and started spilling over. The split of the CPN (UML) was a beginning of the exposure of the clandestine power center, which survives only with the strength of conspiracy and unlimited political gimmicks. The split of the Nepali Congress was growth to maturity, and the subsequent events are spill-over. The biggest failure in this unfolding drama on the part of the democratic political forces was that they could not smell of the foul they were being instigated to play.

The present upsurge of the people marks their genuine inspiration for consolidation of the basic liberties. But it does not mean that the threat or risk of it being crushed by the clandestine power centered political gimmick is over. Coming to its zenith of such gimmick does not mean that it has been powerless, or sustained its biting tooth have been broken. The center is as powerful as it used to be in the past. The only change in its dimension is that it has been overtly exposed at present, whereas it was fully covert till recent past. The gain or lose of the civil society to its mission of achieving basic liberties will thus depend on its clarity of political, economical and social agenda of development. Liberties of people do not stand in vacuum.   

If one analyzes the dynamics of Nepalese history of struggle for freedoms, one can obviously see that it has, as an imbibed character, marked exclusively by political priorities. Socio-economic needs and priorities for the development have consistently been left out. As a result, the economically and socially marginalized sections of the population could not enjoy opportunities for equity, and consequently the clandestine power center could play a plot against democratic forces. In such a state, the larger part of population is easily deluded by the regressive force as it survives on failures of others only. Regression is destructive and devoid of creativity. Obviously, its agenda of winning over the power is solely dependent on the failure of the progressive forces on their agenda. The present government, for instance, took over the power in the pretext of failure of the political parties offer a system of good governance. But it never had a creative agenda of good governance; to grab the governmental power was the only agenda.

Basic liberties are greater need of economically and socially marginalized groups, and of course any political struggle must make these issues as frontline agenda to defeat the clandestine power centered block. The present movement needs to review its position from this prospect. Nepal is currently facing danger of authoritarianism from both the left and right extremism. In this situation the defeat of one may unscrupulously assist the other in gaining power. This on what the American policy to Nepal has been becoming functional. In this situation, the enhancement of the functionality of the central democratic forces is the only right strategy for preserving the realm of basic liberties, and for this the central democratic forces must be able to draw the socially and economically marginalized sections to its fold. Priorities for the socio-economic freedoms and development should therefore be the focused agenda of the struggle for political basic liberties. In this context, the political parties fighting for the democracy should be conscious of their role to massive reforms in the governance system, and the agenda of the movement should be accordingly designed. The success of the ongoing movement for basic liberties is thus dependent on it capability of including socio-economic freedoms and development as priority agenda of the struggle. Its failure to do so may divert the larger part of the population towards leftist extremism, and eventually will provide a basis for continuity of the rights’ control over the State’ power.

In this context, the ongoing movement for democracy must be founded on a charter between the people and political parties. It cannot be a sole instrument of political parties gaining the power over the government with status quo in political dynamics. Restoration of liberal democracy is the agenda of the political parties, whereas the people’ agenda is beyond it; they want an inclusive democracy in terms of participation in political process as well as scoio-econmic development. The people’ movement can be enhanced and consolidated by acceptance by the political parties of the people’s agenda of inclusive democracy. This is where the external powers like India, USA, UK and China can play roles. Their policies and outlooks to present crisis of Nepal should be necessarily guided for the benefit of the general population. Creation or destruction of any polarization for vested interest should find a place, which may drag Nepal to a catastrophe. Especially, US government’s cautious support to the present movement may help to legitimize the brutal suppression of the people, and it may contribute to the upsurge of economically and socially deprived or disenfranchised population to the left extremism. It is necessary to build a faith and trust of the people on the capability of the democratic parties to rescue the country from crisis. This faith of people on democratic forces will isolate unpopular forces from people. As matter of fact, the popular movement to the inclusive democratic system is the only way out of the present crisis.

The present trend of suppression, however, and less visible concern of the international community towards what happening in Nepal are unusual. These trends show that the government is still confident of its capability of quelling the movement with the help of massive use of force. On the other hand, international community is skeptical to extend its genuine support to the democratic forces, and this may be due to ‘stereotyped’ belief that the fall down of the present government might add the strength to the Maoist. This doctrine may have been founded on a sweet logic but on ‘reality’. The Nepalese people are keen to restoration of democracy and have abundantly proved that their choice is no kind authoritarian regime, but the democratic government. The international community can constructively assist Nepal to rescue from the present crisis by extending its support to the democratic aspiration of the people and their capability of their representative parties. By ignoring political parties there can neither be the solution to the Maoist insurgency nor development of the country.

With the present political development in Nepal, one can say that the country has been come to a real cross of crisis. Successful management of the aspiration of the people scattered on every streets and corners of the country today will give a lasting transformation of the present crisis, and failure to an uncertainty of future. The failure of the present movement will throw the country a lasting bloodshed. The present trend of the government to oppress unarmed citizens on the streets compels one to think that it lacks a political vision address the crisis. There is a strong anti-democratic group in the government, which is persistently and adamantly trying to prevail over the people. The terror has been created among the people, everyday it is dragging more people in the streets. The mass is still peaceful on the streets, and has not poured on the inner city in Kathmandu for frenzy and destruction. However, everything naturally has limitation. The anger being generated by indiscriminate bullets and batons might trigger the frenzy, and may invite a catastrophe. It is therefore in nobody’s interest to wait and pass on the time without proper transformation of the crisis. The international community can play a crucial role, by refraining at lest from meddling things, if it does prefer to avoid active engagement in support of the democracy.

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