Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, June 15:

Leaders of the seven-party alliance today said their common political agenda would address the problems posed by the King, the Maoists and also resolve socio-economic disparity vis a vis the sustainability of democracy.

They also pointed that autocracy was no alternative to democracy and that the country had become less peaceful since King Gyanendra’s takeover on February 1.

“We must re-rient our thinking as to whether the monarchy and democracy can coexist, since experience teaches us the monarchy has always undermined democracy and the people’s sovereignty,” said CPN-UML general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal, at a seminar organised by the Gamneshman Singh Academy to brief foreign diplomats on the rationale of the alliance’s agenda.

Commenting on former minister Nilambar Acharya’s working paper, Nepal said the political parties would fulfil their duty of trying to restore democracy and make the people sovereign.

In his paper, Acharya had asked if the political parties were showing “grovelling” before the “absolutist appetite of the monarchy” and also, how long they would remain cooped up in their “modest programmes”.

Agreeing with Acharya, NC general secretary Shushil Koirala said 12 years of democratic rule had created tremendous progress on different fronts.

“But the Maoists butted in, taking advantage of liberal political space provided by democracy and are hell-bent on destroying the achievement fabric,” Koirala said. Accusing the King of misusing constitutional clauses, Koirala said the country had become less peaceful over the last few months.

Also commenting on Acharya’s paper, British ambassador to Nepal, Keith Bloomfield said lack of rule of law was the main concern of international community.

Gopal Man Shrestha, acting president of the NC(D), said that since the takeover the King had made peace a remote possibility.

C P Mainali of the United Left Front and Pari Thapa of Janamorcha Nepal opined that the introduction of an inclusive democracy and restructuring of the state could help resolve the socio-economic contradictions within Nepali society. Both called for a new constitution.