Congress to hold convention next year

Kathmandu, September 6:

The Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting of the Nepali Congress (NC) decided to hold the general convention by August-end 2009.

The party leadership was not willing to fix the date but was compelled to do so after some leaders threatened to write a note of dissent, said party leader Deep Kumar Upadhyay.

Nara Hari Acharya and Pradip Giri pressured the party to fix the date or at least the month for the meeting. The leaders argued that if the party was honest in holding the convention within a year, it should at least decide on the month for the same.

“A number of CWC members threatened to write a note of dissent if the party did not fix the month,” Upadhyay said, adding that if the leaders had to write a note of dissent, it would suggest that division was rife within the party.

Giri said today’s decision was the victory of their move, adding that a majority of CWC members congratulated them after the decision. There was a verbal agreement to hold the convention in May and fix the exact date in the next CWC meeting, he said.

“Any individual, who becomes authoritarian, is scared of party assemblies fearing the people might turn against them,” Giri said, adding that the NC could not resurrect without involving its cadres in its decision-making progress.

“The party leadership could take all these decisions, but we had to hold several meetings as they remained mute spectators,” said Upadhyay.

Today’s decision, he said, will pave the way for the rejuvenation of the party. Upadhyay said though the CPN-Maoist viewed the NC as the enemy number one, the NC would extend its support to the present government in course of constitution-making process.

Asked how the NC would support the government, Upadhyay said the party would play the role of a constructive opposition.

All the NC chapters were allowed to take decisions on their own to protest the arbitrary decisions of the Maoist-led government, he said.

Earlier, party spokesperson Arjun Narsingh KC said the NC would collaborate with all parties to frame the new constitution and bring the peace process to a logical conclusion while fiercely resisting the arbitrary moves of the new coalition.

“We will not tolerate anything detrimental to democracy, human rights and rule of law,” he told the mediapersons at the party office. According to Upadhyay, the NC will have to finish the party unification work within two months as per the unification agreement signed by party president Girija Prasad Koirala and senior leader Sher Bahadur Deuba.

Team returns

KATHMANDU: A team of Nepali Congress leaders returned to the capital on Saturday from a week-long visit to China.

Party vice-president Prakash Man Singh had led the team comprising Dr Narayan Khadka, Sujata Koirala, Dr Minendra Rijal, Shambu Ram Khadka and Pushpa Bhusal. In a press release, the NC said Singh, Koirala and Rijal briefed the ongoing CWC meeting about their visit to the northern neighbour. Singh said his visit to China was friendly and successful. Koirala said Nepal could learn a lot from the development of China and the Tibet Autonomous Region. Dr Rijal said the Chinese leaders viewed party president Girija Prasad Koirala in high esteem. The NC leaders had visited Shanghai, Beijing, Jhinji and Lhasa. The NC leaders met high-level politicians of the Chinese Communist Party. — HNS