Govt holding talks seriously: Poudel

Mahato urged to say sorry

Kathmandu, August 9:

Minister for Peace and Reconstruction Ram Chandra Paudel today told the parliament that the government was seriously holding talks with all the disgruntled factions, including the Madhesi Janadhikar Forum (MJF).

Poudel, however, said the government would not hold talks with anyone demanding “demarcation of the border”.

Responding to MPs’ queries during today’s first session of the parliament, he said that the government would not compromise with the country’s sovereignty, integrity and national unity, He also said that the government would form a commission to make the list of missing people public. He assured compensation for those whose plots of land are being used by security forces.

Poudel said that the conflict cost damages of physical infrastructure worth Rs 5 billion, excluding in the Tarai, and added that some 10,000 families have been displaced.

Also today, Hridayesh Tripathi of the Nepal Sadbhawana Party (Anandidevi) sought “public apology” from Minister for Industry and Supplies, Rajendra Mahato, in the parliament for accusing him and another MP Bharat Bimal Yadav of kidnapping their party president Anandidevi Singh.

Gopal Koirala of the Nepali Congress criticised the Young Communist League (YCL) for manhandling members of the Press Union, who were staging a peaceful sit-in in front of the Gorkhapatra Sansthan against the ouster of 49 working journalists.

Minister for Education and Sports, Pradeep Nepal, on behalf of Minister for Foreign Affairs Sahana Pradhan, said that the newly introduced democratic practice in Bhutan would be incomplete without the people in the Nepali refugee camps, adding that Bhutan is yet to respond to Nepal’s proposal for negotiations.

“The government’s priority is repatriation of the Bhutanese refugees,” he said.

He also said that the government has initiated efforts to resolve the issue of Laxmanpur and Khurdalautan dams and encroachment on border areas on the basis of mutual cooperation and understanding with India.