Agitation aimed at bringing sovereignty back to people, say seven-party alliance leaders

Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, June 19:

Leaders of the seven-party alliance said today the group’s demand for the revival of the third parliament was to bring people’s sovereignty back to Singha Durbar from the Palace. They said there was no confusion about their political goal, which aims to limit king’s role within the constitution to be made by the people through an election to a constituent assembly. “If the King wants the institution of monarchy to continue, he should be ready to accept the place determined by the people,” said Nepali Congress leader Dr Ram Sharan Mahat at a programme organised by eight student organisations at the Lalitpur Engineering Campus today. “Demand for parliament revival is not to provide employment to 205 members of the House, but to bring people’s sovereignty back to the parliament.” He said the King has done the same thing his father had done in 1960 and introduced a party-less Panchayat regi-me. He rapped the Maoists for strengthening King’s ha-nd by resorting to violence and urged them to shun it.

UML standing committee member Bamdev Gautam said the alliance’s goal was to defeat the King’s “dictatorship” and ensure people have “full control of state”. “Looking at the way monarchs have behaved in the last 50 years, it seems democracy and monarchy cannot go hand-in-hand in Nepal,” he said, adding the future of monarchy looked “shaky” if it still refused to accept liberal democracy. He said the King had hired “outdated” persons as vice-chairmen after failing to find prime ministerial candidate. According to vice president of Janamorcha Nepal, Lilamani Pokharel, “people’s total control on the state” was the best definition of “complete democracy”. He said RCCC had taken action against former PM Deuba only to misinform the people and warned casual programmes would not attract people to the movement.