KATHMANDU, Dec 11: A government study committee formed by the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation has recommended the government to grant public holiday for two days in a week.
The committee has also recommended to encourage the private sector to do the same.
The committee comprising Joint Secretary of the Ministry Kamal Prasad Bhattarai, Director General of the Department of Tourism Rudra Singh Tamang, Executive Director of the Nepal Tourism Board Dhananjay Regmi, Deputy Secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs Basudev Ghimire, representative of the Ministry of Finance and Deputy Secretary at the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration Kavindra Nepal made the recommendation.
The committee made the recommendation after studying the international practice of public holidays and its impact on the country’s gross domestic product.
The committee has informed that such conclusion has been reached after studying the issues of internal tourism promotion, reduction in public expenditure, reduction in fuel, increase in productivity and others.
At present, there is a practice of giving public holiday only on Saturdays in Nepal. The ministry had formed a committee to study the provision of two days leave saying it would be important in tourism promotion.
The committee also discussed with stakeholders the impact of the two-day leave, studied the documents published in the past, the flow of tourism services, traffic management and government spending. The committee has stated that the opinions of experts, discussions with industrialists and trade unions have also been included in the study method.
International practice, treaties and policy rules are also considered as the basis of the study.
According to the committee, public holidays are given two days a week in 88 countries of the world. The study found that 12 percent of the countries give leave only one-day in a week.
With the structural changes in Nepali society and family, the society has gradually moved from a joint family to a unitary family. On the other hand, women have also become involved in employment and business.
The committee has mentioned that it has not been able to strike a balance between business and personal life. The committee has mentioned that the situation of not being given enough time to take care of the children should be addressed.
The committee has come to the conclusion that it would be appropriate to give leave for two days as the government offices have reached doorstep of the service recipients.
The committee has also argued that it would be less expensive to work 40 hours a week by working 5 days than the current provision of working 40 hours a week in a period of 6 days.
It is expected that the rest of the time will be spent on family, entertainment, traveling and other aspects of the economy.