CPN-ML splits, Mainali ‘expelled’ from party

Kathmandu, January 7:

A dissident faction of the CPN-ML, led by Rishi Kattel, today convened the party’s third national convention and expelled general secretary C P Mainali from the party and even from its ordinary membership on charges of being a “pro-royalist” and of “opposing constituent assembly election”.

A meeting of the newly-formed 29-member central committee, which was held following the national convention that concluded yesterday, elected Kattel general secretary of the

CPN-ML party.

Jitbir Lama, Tanka Rai and Tej Prasad Kandel have been elected politburo members . Kattel said party representatives from 48 districts participated in the convention held here .

Kattel, in a press statement, said Mainali was expelled as he turned out to be a “pro-royalist” and opposed the constituent assembly election.

“We will ask Mainali in writing to hand over the party’s central office to the new elected leadership. If he refuses to do so, we will seek legal remedy,” Kattel said at a press conference.

He also said Mainali is no longer the chairman of the United Left Front (ULF), one of the constituents of the seven-party alliance, and he cannot take part in the alliance meeting representing the front.

According to the ULF constitution, he said, chief of the party concerned automatically acts as ULF chairman every six months. “We have already notified all the SPA constituents , including Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala, to this effect and the new leadership commands support of two other allies of the front,” said Kattel.

He said that his party would ask Maoist strongman Prachanda and CPN-UML general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal to make an electoral alliance during constituent assembly election if they really wanted to establish a democratic republic. “We will act as a buffer party between them but will not join either side of them. We will forge an alliance of the fringe leftist forces,” Kattel said.