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Nepal: Consultation on Draft Penal and Criminal Procedure Codes


Wednesday, February 2, 2011

On 10 January, the APT and Advocacy Forum supported the National Judicial Academy of Nepal in holding a consultation on the torture, disappearances and fair trial-related provisions of the draft penal and criminal procedure codes. Secretary of the Ministry of Law and Justice, Mr. Madhab Poudel, presented an overview of the drafting process and relevant provisions of the draft codes.

Date: 9 - 15 January 2011
Place: Nepal
Purpose: Strong legal frameworks are key to preventing torture and other ill-treatment. Nepal is currently in the process of drafting new penal and criminal procedure codes, which include provisions relating to torture, disappearances and fair trial. This provides a unique opportunity to strengthen the legal protection against torture and ensure it complies with Nepal’s international legal obligations, including under the UN Convention against Torture. Indeed, Nepal received a number of recommendations to criminalise torture in line with international standards, during its first Universal Periodic Review on 25 January 2011.
Partners: Advocacy Forum
National Judicial Academy
Activities: To support this process, on 10 January, the APT and Advocacy Forum supported the National Judicial Academy of Nepal in holding a consultation on the torture, disappearances and fair trial-related provisions of the draft penal and criminal procedure codes. Secretary of the Ministry of Law and Justice, Mr. Madhab Poudel, presented an overview of the drafting process and relevant provisions of the draft codes. Around 40 judges, prosecutors, lawyers and civil society representatives participated in the consultation and gave input on the relevant provisions of the codes. Most agreed that the drafts made positive progress in strengthening Nepal’s legal framework in this area, including by criminalizing torture and disappearance, but that more could be done to bring the provisions in line with international standards and provide protection to the people of Nepal. Input was received by members of the drafting committee for these codes, including its chair, Hon. Supreme Court Justice, Kalyan Shrestha. The APT gave expert input on the provisions relating to torture, presenting recommendations laid out in its updated briefing note (see below).

This was the first consultation on the torture, disappearances and fair trial-related provisions of the draft penal and criminal procedure codes. Input was received directly by representatives of the drafting committee and the Ministry of Law, which is now tasked with finalizing the bills.
Outcome: Representatives of the drafting committee and the Ministry of Law and Justice received input from legal practitioners and civil society on the torture, disappearance and fair trial related provisions of the draft codes.

The National Judicial Academy has prepared a report of the consultation (see NJA Consultation Proceedings below) which will be provided to members of the drafting committee and the Ministry of Law..
Documents: APT Briefing Note

NJA Consultation Proceedings
Contact Persons: Jem Stevens, APT Asia Pacific Programme Officer
Sébastien Ramu, APT UN & Legal Programme Officer

 

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