The government has not sent employees to Province 2. This points to a conspiracy to foil federalism
— Upendra Yadav, FSF-N Chairman
Kathmandu, March 29
The Chairman of Federal Socialist Forum-Nepal, Upendra Yadav, said his party would join the KP Sharma Oli-led government only if the government signed a deal on the constitution amendment.
Talking to THT at his party office here today, Yadav said his party would join the government only if it would be assured of having a say in the formulation of national policies, including fiscal and political policies.
“People have not given us the mandate to join the government, but if the ruling party wants us to be a partner, it should address our concerns,” he said.
The FSF-N and the Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal have made constitution amendment their major demand. One of their key concerns is to revise provincial boundaries.
Yadav said it was not necessary for his party to join the government to support it.
Yadav added that his party would raise the issue of empowerment of Madhesis and other marginalised communities both in the Parliament and on the streets. “We may launch another Madhes movement if need be,” he said and added that people of marginalised communities should always be ready to struggle and sacrifice to claim their rightful share in the state organs.
He said Madhesis, who had no power at all and who suffered all kinds of discrimination in the past, had reached a stage where they could force power wielders to change things in their favour.
“Madhesi ke hath gardan tak pahuchal chhai,” he said in Maithili which means Madhesis were strong claimants.
Asked if the UML was not in favour of signing a written agreement with his party, Yadav said the ruling CPN-UML had not told him whether it would sign an agreement or not. In response to a question, he said his party was ready to discuss deals on constitution amendment and partnership in the government if the prime minister so wished. “It all depends on the prime minister,” he said when asked if they would discuss constitution amendment and FSF-N’s participation in the government with the ruling party.
Yadav said reports that his party wanted to block the participation of the Rastriya Janata Party- Nepal in the government were wrong. “In fact, I want the RJP-N to join the government before we do. Its leaders have stayed in the government more than ours. They have more experience of being a partner in the government,” he added.
Yadav said Madhesi people would continue to protest and struggle as long as they were discriminated against by the state.
He said his party’s government in Province 2 would mainly focus on economic prosperity of the province. “Province 2 lacks resources and means. Our main challenge is to arrange enough resources for its development,” he said. He added that neither the government had allocated enough resources for the province nor did it hand over the administration to the province.
“The government has not sent employees to the province. This points to the government’s conspiracy to foil federalism,” he said.
A version of this article appears in print on March 30, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.