Nepal's constitution 2015 has a legal obligation that one Dalit woman be a mandatory ward member with the purpose to eradicate untouchability. Considering the obligation, Dalit members have been elected in the wards of Achham and elsewhere.
However, they have not been able to take responsibility for any growth or policymaking, even after four years because of the people's ignorance towards them. Bhavana BK, a ward member of Mangalsen Municipality-6, said that caste discrimination still persisted politically even though there was no discrimination in the public programs of the ward. Ward members have no information about the budget, plan and program coming to the ward.
It has been four years since Bhunti Dholi of Mangalsen Municipality-2 of Achham won from the Dalit quota. Meanwhile, apart from signing the meeting in the ward, she has not been given any responsibility or role. Ganga Thapa, a ward member of Gulsen Municipality-1, said that she is not provided with any work even though she is looking for her responsibilities.
Dalit researcher Shivahari Gyawali said that Dalit representation at the local level is "ceremonial". He is of the view that the ethnic structure has a direct impact on the ward level as well. Achham has 4 municipalities and 6 rural municipalities. There are 364 ward members in a ward at the rate of 4 members. They all have a common complaint of not being given the responsibility to work.
August 03, 2018