Govt trying to disrupt polls: Oli

Kathmandu, April 27

CPN-UML Chairperson KP Sharma Oli today alleged that the  ruling parties were making an all out effort to disrupt the forthcoming local level elections — despite their rhetoric that they were serious about holding it.

Inaugurating the UML’s election publicity campaign at party headquarters in Dhumbarahi, Oli further alleged that the ruling parties, including Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal were searching for a pretext so as to not conduct elections.

The government had initially decided to hold polls in a single phase on May 14.

Now it has decided to conduct it in two phases — on May 14 in provinces 3, 4, and 6; and on June 14 in provinces 1, 2, 5, and 7.

“The ruling parties seem busy finding pretext for disrupting elections,” he alleged. The former prime minister also cast doubt on PM Dahal’s assertion that ‘polls would be postponed only if the sky fell down’.

“I was suspicious that the ground was being prepared to sabotage the polls when I first heard from the PM that elections would be put off only if the sky fell down,” Oli said.

PM Dahal had recently said in an event in Jhapa that the election slated for May 14 would be put off only if the sky fell down or the earth tore apart.

Following that speech, the ruling parties had sealed an agreement with the agitating Madhesi parties and decided

to hold polls in two phases.

Oli dubbed all the decisions taken at the eleventh hour — including that of holding polls in two phases, seeking proposal to increase the number of the local levels in 11 districts in the Tarai and to increase new voters in these districts — as pretexts to foil elections.

The main opposition leader also criticised the attempts to announce the new budget and change the prime minister and ministers even after the election code of conduct came into effect. He further said that even junior employees couldn’t be transferred or money be allotted under new headings to buy things.

Oli also termed the announcement of local poll date in the mid of Ramadan — a month-long holy festival of Muslims — a design to foil polls.

Meanwhile, Indian Ambassador Manjeev Singh Puri today called on UML Chair Oli at the party’s central office in Dhumbarahi.

On the occasion, the duo talked about the current political impasse and preparations for local polls and other issues, according to UML leader Krishna Gopal Shrestha.