Major parties to address protesters’ concerns

Kathmandu, August 25

Four major parties – Nepali Congress, CPN-UML, Unified CPN-Maoist and Madhesi Janaadhikar Forum-Democratic – today reviewed recent violent incidents in several districts, mainly in Kailali, Rautahat and Sarlahi, and said they would try to address the concerns of agitating people by holding talks with their representatives. They, however, said that they would continue the constitution-drafting process.

“We reviewed the situation and concluded that we should deal with the issues raised by protesters politically. We will hold talks with agitating sides and continue the ongoing constitution-drafting process,” said NC leader Ramchandra Paudel after the meeting of the four parties held at the residence of Prime Minister Sushil Koirala this evening. The parties, however, have not made any concrete plan or set a timeline for talks with agitating sides.

The leaders expressed firm commitment to seek solution through talks and not to stop the constitution-drafting process, according to Paudel.

The Constituent Assembly will begin discussion on the “Revised Bill” of the new constitution tomorrow morning and the parties still have room to change the proposed provisions through amendment proposals.

Asked whether the parties would change the demarcation of boundaries of seven-province federal model, Paudel said, “We discussed all aspects of the issues being raised but did not take any concrete decision,” he said.

Brutal killing of police personnel and a child in Tikapur yesterday also figured in the four-party talks, said Paudel.

The four-party meeting held earlier this morning concluded to find a political solution of the contentious issues and urged the government to probe Tikapur violence and take stern action against the culprits.