Govt talks team meets UDMF leaders

KATHMANDU: The government talks team led by Deputy Prime Minister Kamal Thapa held an informal meeting with the representatives of the agitating United Democratic Madhesi Front in Kathmandu on Tuesday.

The Cabinet had formed a four-member talks team under Deputy Prime Minister Thapa to hold dialogue with the protesting Madhesi and Janajati forces yesterday.

Based on the talks that the joint team held today, Thapa told media after the meeting, "I am very optimistic that formal talks will begin soon."

According to Thapa, the team called on the UDMF leaders for courtesy and ask them to sit for formal talks.

Besides Thapa, the team includes Minister of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Agni Prasad Kharel, Minister of General Administration Rekha Sharma, and Minister without portfolio Ram Janam Chaudhari.

The government talks team went to the Tarai Madhesh Democratic Party's office in Kathmandu to meet the UDMF leader Mahantha Thakur, who is the chairman of TMDP.

"We have clearly told the (government) talks team to come up with clarity on the political issues including the (provincial) demarcation," TMDP Vice-Chairman Hridayesh Tripathi said.

According to him, they asked the government talks team members whether they are authorised to hold talks on the matter making it clear that if they are then the talks could move ahead meaningfully.

"If they don't have right then they first have to discuss among themselves the issues, particularly provincial demarcation, proportional (representation), delineation of constituencies based on population and citizenship."

Earlier, the talks team formed by the three major parties had held two rounds of informal talks with the representatives of United Democratic Madhesi Front.


Team formed to hold talks with Madhesi, Tharu forces