Kathmandu, July 22
Senior Nepali Congress leader Ramchandra Paudel today told a meeting of the party’s Central Working Committee that he and party President Sher Bahadur Deuba should pave the way for the new generation.
Paudel told THT that he told the meeting it would be better if he (Paudel) and Deuba gave up leadership to ‘avert a crisis’ in the party. He, however, did not elaborate. “We are too old to lead the party now. I am ready to quit active politics. It’s time you and I pave the way for the new generation,” Paudel said.
Speaking at a meeting to review the party’s performance in the local polls, Paudel criticised Deuba’s leadership in the government and the party saying the NC faced bleak prospects. “We are the largest force in the Parliament, but we ranked second in the local polls,” he said. Paudel said it was wrong to issue tickets for elections without forming a parliamentary board. He said money power was at play within the party and this was not good for democracy.
Paudel also criticised Deuba for not appointing the party’s office bearers and not holding the Mahasamiti meeting even a year after the party’s general convention. He said the NC also hadn’t distributed and updated active party membership.
NC lawmaker Ram Krishna Yadav said he told the meeting that the party should put the constitution amendment bill to vote as per the decision taken by a gathering of NC leaders of Province 2 and the government should make efforts to bring the Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal on board the poll process. “Even if the RJP-N does not take part in the third phase of local polls, the government should hold the polls on the stipulated date (September 18),” he said, adding that people of Province 2 were eager to vote.
Another lawmaker Kamala Panta said voters had supported the NC’s agendas and it would be better for the party to move ahead with the constitution amendment bill.
Pradip Paudel told the meeting the party should form a probe committee to punish saboteurs who caused loss to the party during local polls. He and some speakers demanded that the government expand the Cabinet soon.
According to NC sources, CWC members close to senior leader Ramchandra Paudel told the meeting that the party leadership’s views on the appointment of new Inspector General of Nepal Police and the leadership’s decision to register impeachment motion against former chief justice Sushila Karki were also the reasons behind the party’s poor performance in the local polls.
Deuba loyalists Bhishma Raj Angdambe, Mahendra Yadav and Min Bahadur Bishwakarma defended Deuba’s decisions saying the party had no option other than to decide on some crucial issues, but NC cadres had failed to defend the party’s decisions during the poll campaign. They also said it would be wrong to conclude that the party had ranked second in local polls as polls in Province 2 were yet to be held.
The meeting will continue tomorrow.
A version of this article appears in print on July 23, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.