MJF threat halts budget session

KATHMANDU: The tight schedule of the House to proceed with the budgetary programme halted on Saturday after Upendra Yadav-led Madhesi Janaadhikar Forum threatened to disrupt the House meeting until the MJF’s Parliamentary Party (PP) office was provided to the faction.

However, after nearly 12-hour marathon talks, the party agreed to let the House business run from tomorrow after Bijaya Kumar Gachhadar group, another faction of the party, agreed to provide the PP office used by it to Yadav’s faction.

A series of meetings were held between the two groups. Constituent Assembly Chairman Subas Nembang, Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal and major political parties held talks with both the MJF factions separately at

Constituent Assembly Hall and Singha Durbar.

After the MJF split into two factions last month, Bijaya Kumar Gachhadar’s group had been using the PP office at Singha Durbar. The Election Commission is yet to give its verdict as to which group is the mother party.

“The Gachhadar group agreed to provide the current PP office to its rival fraction on the condition that it will not be linked to the authenticity issue. Until the EC gives its verdict over the authenticity

issue, the CA secretariat will make temporary arrangement of the PP office for the Gachhadar group,” said a high ranking official of the CA, who also participated in the talks between the two groups throughout the day.

The House meeting was scheduled for 8 am to discuss the policies and programmes of the government, presented by President Dr Ram Baran Yadav on Thursday.

“As today’s meeting could not be convened, the time allocated

to political parties for discussions will be shortened to half in tomorrow’s meeting. The budget will be presented as scheduled,” said Constituent Assembly chairman Nembang.

Nembang informed that parties agreed to run the House meeting from 8 am tomorrow.

As per the schedule, the discussions over the policies and programmes must be completed by tomorrow in order to allow the finance minister to present the budget of upcoming fiscal. The budget must be presented by July 15, the last day of the current fiscal year.

The main opposition UCPN-Maoist has said it would boycott the discussions after its CA member Dr Baburam Bhattarai put forth the party’s view over the policies and programmes in the beginning tomorrow.