Bhandari slams Maoists for sinister designs

KAVRE: Defence Minister Bidhya Bhandari on Saturday blamed the Unified CPN-Maoist of raking up the issue of baby king after quitting the government.

Inaugurating a joint district conference of All Nepal Peasants' Federation and All Nepal Women's Association in Banepa, Bhandari said, "The Maoists are accusing the UML of trying to initiate the issue of baby king. But they are the ones who are deliberately raising the issue." "The Maoists are misleading the people. It will not benefit them," she added. Saying that the Maoists had to quit the government because of their extreme leftist conduct, Bhandari said the government that interferes into press freedom, human rights and independent judiciary could not last long. "The Maoists should not blame others for the failure of the government. Their government was toppled because of their anarchic activities," she said. She also accused the former rebels of taking unilateral decision despite leading a coalition government.

Defence minister added that the new government would draft the new constitution within the stipulated time frame. She, however, refused to comment on queries regarding the integration of People's Liberation Army combatants.

Addressing the function, UML secretary Shankar Pokharel said the Maoists would have been languishing in jungles had the UML not brought them to the peace process. "It will be impossible for the Maoists to form a government without the support of the UML," he claimed.

He added that the erstwhile government was toppled because the UCPN-Maoist talked about civilian supremacy without disarming the PLA combatants and making them loyal to the peace process.