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Encyclopedia > Politics of Bhutan
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Bhutan

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Politics and government of
Bhutan
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Politics of Bhutan takes place in a framework of a traditional absolute monarchy, currently developing into a constitutional monarchy. The King of Bhutan is head of state. Executive power is exercised by the Lhengye Shungtsog, the council of ministers. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the National Assembly. A royal edict issued on April 22, 2007 lifted the previous ban on political parties, ordering that they be created, in anticipation of parliamentary elections to be held the following year[1]. Bhutanese rulers have styled themselves as Desi Druks (see dual system of government under Ngawang Namgyal), maharajas, and kings. ... Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck (born February 21, 1980) is the fifth Dragon King of Bhutan and head of the Wangchuck dynasty. ... The Lhengye Shungtsog is the council of ministers or cabinet of the kingdom of Bhutan. ... The following is a list of the prime ministers of the Kingdom of Bhutan. ... Lyonpo Khandu Wangchuk (born 1950) is a member of the Council of Ministers of Bhutan. ... The Je Khenpo is the title given to the highest ranking religious official of Bhutan. ... The Tshogdu is the unicameral National Assembly of Bhutan (legislature). ... Bhutan is an absolute monarchy with no legal political parties. ... Elections in Bhutan gives information on election and election results in Bhutan. ... The Royal High Court of Bhutan is apex court of Bhutan. ... Bhutan is divided into 20 districts (dzongkhag, singular and plural): Bumthang Chukha (old spelling Chhukha) Dagana Gasa Haa Lhuntse (old spelling Lhuntshi) Mongar Paro Pemagatshel (old spelling Pemagatsel) Punakha Samdrup Jongkhar Samtse (old spelling Samchi) Sarpang Thimphu Trashigang (old spelling Tashigang) Trashiyangste Trongsa (old spelling Tongsa) Tsirang (old spelling Chirang... Foreign Relations of Bhutan Bhutanese embassies and consulates abroad Peoples Republic of Bangladesh; in Dhaka, Bangladesh Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; in Hong Kong, the Peoples Republic of China Republic of India; in New Delhi, India Republic of India; in Calcutta, India Confederation of Switzerland; in Geneva, Switzerland... Information on politics by country is available for every country, including both de jure and de facto independent states, inhabited dependent territories, as well as areas of special sovereignty. ... This does not cite its references or sources. ... This does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Jigme Singye Wangchuck, (or in a pronunciation-based Romanization Jimi Singgê Wangchu) is the King of Bhutan. ... Queen Elizabeth II, is the Head of State of 16 countries including: the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Jamaica, New Zealand and the Bahamas, as well as crown colonies and overseas territories of the United Kingdom. ... Under the doctrine of the separation of powers, the executive is the branch of a government charged with implementing, or executing, the law. ... The Lhengye Shungtsog is the council of ministers or cabinet of the kingdom of Bhutan. ... A legislature is a governmental deliberative body with the power to adopt laws. ... The Tshogdu (Also Nacional Assembly) is the unicameral legislature of Bhutan. ... Political parties Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      A political party is a political organization that seeks to attain political power within a government, usually by participating in electoral campaigns. ...

Contents

Sovereignty

The Bhutanese people have historically never had doubts about their nation's sovereignty. Bhutan in fact has never been colonized. However, to the outside world, namely India and before that the British Raj, Bhutan was viewed as less than sovereign for their own geopolitical interests. Bhutan was treated as a suzerainty by the British Raj, during which time a monarchy was set up and 'allowed' it to administer Bhutan's internal affairs. Foreign and defence policy was decided by the British. This did not mean so much to the Bhutanese however due to their policy of self-imposed isolation. In 1949, after Indian independence, Bhutan and India agreed to a ten-article, perpetual treaty which effectively continued the relationship, but with India taking the place of the United Kingdom as the imperial power. That is, India agreed not to interfere in Bhutan's internal relations, while Bhutan agreed "to be guided by the advice of the Government of India in regard to its external relations" (Article 2). The treaty also established free trade and full extradition between the two countries. Suzerainty refers to a situation in which a region or people is a tributary to a more powerful entity which allows the tributary some limited domestic autonomy but controls its foreign affairs. ... In many Indian languages, Raj literally means Prince or Royalty though is often used to mean something more like the English term of empire and as such is often used in reference to the Mughal Raj and the British Raj: the period of direct colonial rule of India by the... Forms of government Part of the Politics series Politics Portal This box:      A monarchy, from the Greek μονος, one, and αρχειν, to rule, is a form of government that has a monarch as head of state(KING)In most monarchies the monarch usually reigns as head of state for life; this is... The Indian independence movement was a series of steps taken in the Indian subcontinent for independence from British colonial rule, beginning with the Rebellion of 1857. ...


While Bhutan sees its destiny as being closely linked with that of India, for which reason it strives to promote excellent relations with it, it has also quietly striven to assert its sovereignty at the same time.


Article 2 of the 1949 treaty has mostly been ignored by both countries as Bhutan confidently handles all of its foreign affairs, including the sensitive border demarcation talks with China.


In February 2007, the Indo-Bhutan Friendship Treaty was substantially revised with all references to phrases such as "will be guided" being removed, thus clarifying the sovereign and independent status of Bhutan once and for all.


Executive branch

Main office holders
Office Name Party Since
King Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck 15 December 2006
Prime Minister Khandu Wangchuk 5 September 2006

Bhutan's head of state is the Druk Gyalpo ("Dragon King"). Although his title is hereditary, he can be removed by a two-thirds majority vote by the parliament, the unicameral National Assembly, or Tshogdu. The candidates to the Council of Ministers (Lhengye Shungtsog) are nominated by the monarch, elected by the National Assembly. The members serve fixed, five-year terms. There is also a Royal Advisory Council (Lodoi Tsokde), members nominated by the monarch Jigme Singye Wangchuck, (or in a pronunciation-based Romanization Jimi Singgê Wangchu) is the King of Bhutan. ... Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuck (born February 21, 1980) is the fifth Dragon King of Bhutan and head of the Wangchuck dynasty. ... December 15 is the 349th day of the year (350th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... The following is a list of the prime ministers of the Kingdom of Bhutan. ... Lyonpo Khandu Wangchuk (born 1950) is a member of the Council of Ministers of Bhutan. ... September 5 is the 248th day of the year (249th in leap years). ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... Queen Elizabeth II, is the Head of State of 16 countries including: the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Jamaica, New Zealand and the Bahamas, as well as crown colonies and overseas territories of the United Kingdom. ... Kings of Bhutan: Ugyen Wangchuk (1907-1926) Jigme Wangchuk (1926-1952) Jigme Dorji Wangchuk (1952-1972) Jigme Singye Wangchuk (1972-present) Categories: Lists of office-holders | Bhutan ... A parliament is a legislature, especially in those countries whose system of government is based on the Westminster system modelled after that of the United Kingdom. ... Unicameralism is the practice of having only one legislative or parliamentary chamber. ... The Tshogdu is the unicameral National Assembly of Bhutan (legislature). ...


The Je Khenpo is the highest religious official of Bhutan. He is typically viewed as the closest and most powerful advisor to the King of Bhutan. The 71st and present Je Khenpo is Trulku Jigme Chhoeda. In 1998, the monarch's executive powers were transferred to the council of ministers, or cabinet (Lhengye Shungtsog). Candidates for the council of ministers are elected by the National Assembly for a fixed, five-year term, and must be a part of the legislative assembly. The cabinet is headed by the Prime Minister, who is the head of government. The post of Prime Minister rotates each year between the five candidates who secured the highest number of votes. Recently, a new constitution that includes provision for a two-party democratic system was unveiled after four years of preparation. This constitution is likely to be put to the people in a referendum; at the behest of the monarch, the referendum proposes a significant reduction in his powers. | Final draft in PDF The Je Khenpo is the title given to the highest ranking religious official of Bhutan. ... Jigme Singye Wangchuck, (or in a pronunciation-based Romanization Jimi Singgê Wangchu) is the King of Bhutan. ... In Tibetan Buddhism, tulku (also tülku, trulku, etc. ... Alternate meanings in cabinet (disambiguation) A Cabinet is a body of high-ranking members of government, typically representing the executive branch. ... The Lhengye Shungtsog is the council of ministers or cabinet of the kingdom of Bhutan. ... List of Prime Ministers of Bhutan - Wikipedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... The Head of Government is the chief officer of the executive branch of a government, often presiding over a cabinet. ... Ballots of the Argentine plebiscite of 1984 on the border treaty with Chile A referendum (plural: referendums or referenda) or plebiscite (from Latin plebiscita, originally a decree of the Concilium Plebis) is a direct vote in which an entire electorate is asked to either accept or reject a particular proposal. ...


Legislative branch

The National Assembly (Tshogdu) has 154 members, 105 members elected at various dates for a three year term in single-seat constituencies, 37 appointed members and 12 representatives of Buddhist groups. Suffrage in Bhutan is unique in that each family-unit, rather than individual, has one vote. This would be changed to full universal suffrage once the proposed new Constitution is approved.[2] The Tshogdu (Also Nacional Assembly) is the unicameral legislature of Bhutan. ... A constituency is any cohesive corporate unit or body bound by shared structures, goals or loyalty. ... Universal suffrage (also general suffrage or common suffrage) consists of the extension of the right to vote to all adults, without distinction as to race, sex, belief, or economic or social status. ...


Political parties and elections

[discuss] – [edit]
Summary of the composition of the Bhutan Tshogdu
Appointment method Seats
Members elected from village constituencies 107
Royally appointed members 37
Representatives of Buddhist groups 12
Total 150

Political pressure groups include the Buddhist clergy; ethnic Nepalese organizations leading militant anti-government campaign; Indian merchant community and the exiled United Front for Democracy. The Tshogdu is the unicameral National Assembly of Bhutan (legislature). ...


Judicial branch

In Bhutan's judicial system, the monarch is the final court of appeal (the "Supreme Court of Appeal"). The Royal High Court of Bhutan is the highest court in the country. The Royal High Court has original jurisdiction over the 20 districts of the nation. Bhutan's legal system is superficially based on Indian law and English common law, but is in fact largely informal. Judicial appointments are made by the monarch, and may be recalled by him at any time. The Politics series Politics Portal This box:      In law, the judiciary or judicial is the system of courts which administer justice in the name of the sovereign or state, a mechanism for the resolution of disputes. ... In the court system of a state or of a subordinate regional entity, an appeals court is a court of second instance where a party to a case on which judgment has been entered can ask to have their case reheard if they suspect an error of law, fact, or... The Royal High Court of Bhutan is apex court of Bhutan. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Indian Law is largely derived from the British Common Law. ... This article concerns the common-law legal system, as contrasted with the civil law legal system; for other meanings of the term, within the field of law, see common law (disambiguation). ...


Legal system

The criminal justice system is based on trial before a panel of judges, and therefore resembles more the Napoleonic than the British or American systems. The prosecutor, a government employee, seeks to obtain an acknowledgement of culpability from the accused. If this happens quickly, the sentencing may be lenient. If culpability is obvious but the accused refuses to admit to it, the sentence may be correspondingly severe. Judges may dismiss the case for lack of proof at any time. Recent legislation defines required proof of guilt more closely, providing increased protection against trivial or mistaken charges.


Minor criminal offences may be tried by the dzongda (regional governor) or a local magistrate.


Bhutan has not accepted compulsory International Court of Justice jurisdiction. The International Court of Justice (known colloquially as the World Court or ICJ; French: ) is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. ...


Administrative divisions

Butan is divided in 20 districts (dzongkhag, singular and plural); Bumthang, Chukha, Dagana, Gasa, Haa, Lhuntse, Mongar, Paro, Pemagatshel, Punakha, Samdrup Jongkhar, Samtse, Sarpang, Thimphu, Trashigang, Trashiyangste, Trongsa, Tsirang, Wangduephodrang, Zhemgang Location of Bumthang dzongkhag within Bhutan Bumthang is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Chukha, previously Chhukha, is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Location of Dagana dzongkhag within Bhutan Dagana (also spelled Dhakana, previously known as Daga) is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Gasa is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Haa (alternative spelling Ha) is one of the 20 dzongkhag or districts comprising Bhutan. ... Lhuntse, previously Lhuntshi, is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Location of Mongar dzongkhag within Bhutan Mongar is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... location of Paro dzongkhag within Bhutan. ... Pemagatshel, previously Pemagatsel, is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Punakha is a dzong in Punakha District, Bhutan. ... Samdrup Jongkhar is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Samtse district is alomst three times the size of Singapore, covering an area of approximately 1500 sq. ... Location of Sarpang dzongkhag within Bhutan Sarpang (or Geylegphug) is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Thimphu from Sangey Gang Thimphu (Tibetan script: ཐིམ་ཕུ་) is the capital of Bhutan, and also the name of the surrounding valley and dzongkhag, the Thimphu District. ... Location of Trashigang dzongkhag within Bhutan Trashigang, also spelled Tashigang, is Bhutans easternmost district. ... Trashiyangste is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Trongsa, previously Tongsa, is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Location of Tsirang dzongkhag within Bhutan Tsirang, previously Chirang, is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ... Wangdue Phodrang (previously spelled Wangdi Phodrang) is a dzongkhag (i. ... Zhemgang, previously Shemgang, is one of the 20 dzongkhag (districts) comprising Bhutan. ...


International organization participation

Bhutan is member of the AsDB, BIMSTEC, CP, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IMF, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, ITU, NAM, OPCW, SAARC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is a multilateral development finance institution dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific. ... BIMSTEC Bay of Bengal Initiative for MultiSectoral Technical and Economic coorperation Background On 6 June 1997, a new sub-regional grouping was formed in Bangkok and given the name BIST-EC (Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand Economic Cooperation). ... The Colombo Plan began in 1951, and is a regional organisation focused on social development. ... The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP or ESCAP) was established in 1947 (then as the UN Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East) to encourage economic cooperation among its member states. ... The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger. ... link titlelink titlelink titlelink titlelink title--210. ... Logo of the World Bank The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development is one of the five institutions consisting the World Bank Group. ... The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), an agency of the United Nations, codifies the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth. ... The International Development Association (IDA) created on September 24, 1960, is the part of the World Bank that helps the world’s poorest countries. ... The International Fund for Agricultural Development is an agency of the United Nations. ... The International Finance Corporation (IFC) promotes sustainable private sector investment in developing countries as a way to reduce poverty and improve peoples lives. ... “IMF” redirects here. ... Intelsat, Ltd. ... Interpol, or International Criminal Police Organization, was established as The International Criminal Police Commission in 1923 to assist international criminal police cooperation. ... Stamp The International Olympic Committee is an organization based in Lausanne, Switzerland, created by Pierre de Coubertin and Demetrios Vikelas on June 23, 1894 to reinstate the Ancient Olympic Games held in Greece between 776 BC to 396 AD. Its membership is 203 National Olympic Committees. ... The International Telecommunication Union (ITU; French: Union internationale des télécommunications, Spanish: Unión Internacional de Telecomunicaciones) is an international organization established to standardize and regulate international radio and telecommunications. ... NAM stands for: National Association of Manufacturers Non-Aligned Movement Number Assignment Module Network Analysis Module National Assembly Member, a member of the National Assembly of The Gambia. ... The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is not an agency of the United Nations. ...  Afghanistan  Bangladesh  Bhutan  India  Maldives  Nepal  Pakistan  Sri Lanka Headquarters Kathmandu, Nepal Statistics Area  - Total 7th if ranked 5,130,746 km² Population  - Total (2004)  - Density 1st if ranked 1,467,255,669 285. ... The foundation of the U.N. The United Nations (UN) is an international organization whose stated aims are to facilitate co-operation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress and human rights issues. ... The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) was established in 1963 as a permanent intergovernmental body, UNCTAD is the principal organ of the United Nations General Assembly dealing with trade, investment and development issues. ... UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is a specialized agency of the United Nations established in 1945. ... United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is an agency of the United Nations with the mission of helping countries pursue sustainable industrial development, it is a specialist in industrial affairs. ... The Universal Postal Union (UPU, French: Union postale universelle) is an international organization that coordinates postal policies between member nations, and hence the world-wide postal system. ... The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations that acts as a coordinating authority on international public health, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. ... Headquarters in Geneva The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is one of the specialized agencies of the United Nations. ... The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) is an intergovernmental organization with a membership of 187 Member States and Territories. ... World Tourism Organization Building in Madrid The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is a United Nations agency dealing with questions relating to tourism. ...


Preserving traditional culture

During the six 5-year plans for Bhutan's planned developing starting from the 1960s, the authorities always took the survival for Bhutan's tradition and culture for granted. During that period of rapid development a significant part of Bhutan's population, principally the youth were exposed overnight to western and outside ideas, cultures and other influences. By the 1980s the government no longer felt so certain that its own culture would survive very long. Following that conclusion, policies were introduced for fostering traditional culture including mandatory wearing of the northern Buddhist dress (gho and kira), accompanied by regulations restricting employment and educational opportunities for residents who are not of full Bhutanese descent. Image File history File links Information_icon. ... Shortcut: WP:WIN Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia and, as a means to that end, also an online community. ... Shortcut: WP:CU Marking articles for cleanup This page is undergoing a transition to an easier-to-maintain format. ... This Manual of Style has the simple purpose of making things easy to read by following a consistent format — it is a style guide. ...


These policies have been heavily criticised internationally especially due to their imposition on ethnic Nepalese who traditionally do not share in all of the cultural customs of the dominant Bhutanese ethnic groups. However the government finds it difficult to relent since the rate of development has been so fast, the momentum seems to be to adopt western culture and without some intervention, the traditional culture would very soon disappear.


References

  1. ^ Sengupta, Somini. "Line Up and Pick a Dragon: Bhutan Learns to Vote." New York Times. 24 April 2007. (Accessed 24 April 2007)[1]
  2. ^ Constitutional proposal[2]

  Results from FactBites:
 
Bhutan (756 words)
The area, historically close to Tibet to the north, came under the influence of the British in India during the 19th century and a protectorate was established in 1910, with Britain assuming control of foreign affairs, but refraining from interference in internal affairs.
The official religion of Bhutan is the Mahayana tradition of Buddhism, which is adhered to by about three quarters of the population.
Bhutan is one of the most secluded nations in the world, and access for foreigners is restricted to certain areas, although these are expanding.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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