Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba discussed Cabinet expansion and other political issues with the five-party alliance leaders today.

According to CPN-Maoist Centre Spokesperson Narayan Kaji Shrestha, coalition partners told the PM there was no reason for delaying the Cabinet expansion. He said the PM would hold discussion with the top leaders of parties in the coalition tomorrow to work out which party gets how many ministries.

Shrestha added that the PM was expected to expand the Cabinet by Wednesday.

"Coalition partners told the PM that in the previous weeks there were reasons for the PM to delay the Cabinet expansion, but this was not the case now. Hence, the PM should expand the Cabinet without waiting for even a minute," Shrestha said.

According to another CPN-Maoist Centre leader Dev Prasad Gurung, the coalition partners urged the PM to give full shape to the Cabinet soon as the newly established parties had already got recognition from the Election Commission.

Shrestha said delay in expansion of the Cabinet had adversely impacted the performance of the government and that had not given a good message to the public.

The five-party alliance also urged the PM to make the government's policies and programmes socialist-oriented and to give the public the feeling that this government was different from the erstwhile 'KP Sharma Oli's regressive government.' "Our development model should be different. There should be judicious development in the country and development expenditure should be reasonable," Shrestha further said.

Gurung said coalition partners had urged the government to bring income generating programmes for indigent people and give relief to those affected by floods and landslides.

Senior leader of Democratic Socialist Party Rajendra Mahato said that Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba had not made any offer to his party regarding its participation in the government. "We have not received any offer or hint from the PM. If the PM asks us to join his government, we will think about it in relation to our political demands,"

Mahato said and added that his party had supported the Deuba-led government but was not a part of the five-party alliance.

He said his party could join the government if the PM made an offer and if he was ready to meet the party's demands.

A version of this article appears in the print on August 31 2021, of The Himalayan Times.