LGBTI members are hopeful but not confident about same-sex law  

Madhav Dulal/Pahichan – Government has indicated to formulate laws on same-sex marriage. Though the word same sex-marriage as demanded by LGBTI community may not be used in the law, Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare is conducting homework to make laws. According to officials, the new law will be flexible when it comes to marriage among the members of LGBTI community.

The Ministry, however, has not incorporated those issues in its annual program. A government report that suggested formulating same-sex marriage is gathering a dust at ministry. Even after the formation of new government which is talking about the inclusive policy is not serious to resolve the issues faced by this community through formulation of laws. Even the previous governments did not take any initiations to formulate same-sex marriage law.

The current government which commands two-third majority in the parliament has sufficient number to enact any laws but there have been very few efforts. Members of this community complain that they will have to go underground if dilly-dallying continues to formulate same-sex marriage.

IT has been almost three years since the formulation of constitution which has clearly provided various rights to this community. The article 12 of the constitution provides clear rights to see citizenship on the basis of equality but there are still hassles to get citizenship in various districts.

Due to the problems created by local administrations, members of this community fear that constitutionally guaranteed rights could be jeopardized anytime. Similarly, the article 18 of the constitution provides the rights of equality but laws have not been formulated to cement those laws. The article 42 of the constitution has provided the proportional representation of this community in all state organs.

It is not sure that this community will get the rights because Ministry of Women, children and senior citizens is not an only body that could take final decisions while formulating laws. Other ministries must give consent to formulate those laws. Minister Thapa is assuring this community saying that Ministry would reach a conclusion after the consultations and homework. There is not better coordination between Minister and other officials at Ministry about the formulation of laws. That is why members of this community are not hopeful of new laws.