Govt, UMDP talks end inconclusively

Kathmandu, February 19:

Anil Kumar Jha who headed the United Madhes Democratic Party (UMDP) talks team in today’s dialogue with the government and the representatives of the seven-party alliance expressed hope of reaching a deal with the government soon.

He said that both the parties could discuss only on the first point of their six point demands and they parted today to do internal consultation before another round of meeting.

He said that in order to make the atmosphere for dialogue conducive, they urged the government to declare all people killed in Madhes movement martyr, provide treatment and compensation to the injured and to stop excessive use of force against their caders in the ongoing agitation.

“We will not stop our agitation until our demands are met,” Jha told the media persons gathered at Prime Minister’s residence in Kathmandu, adding that they did not discuss on their key demands of autonomy and change in election laws today.

NCP-UML leader Jhalanath Khanal who was also present in the meeting with the Madhesi leaders expressed hope of a deal by tonight.

“I told the Prime Minister that we will not agree on One Madhes One Province and right to self-determination that can give them right to secede,” Khanal told media persons gathered at Prime Minister’s residence.

He said that the issues of larger autonomy should be decided by the Constituent Assmbly, adding that they are determine to hold the CA polls on scheduled date.

“If a conspiracy is hatched to thwart the polls, the whole nation will unite and move ahead to hold the CA polls,” he added.

NC stalwarts Mahesh Acharya and Amod Upadhyay accompanied the Prime Minister in today’s parley with the Madhesi leaders.

Earlier, Jha, while addressing an interaction programme organised by the Madhesi NGO Federation here today, said the Madhesis only want their rights secured and they do not want the disintegration of the country.

Meanwhile, Tharu leaders and intellects today flayed the idea of ‘One Madhes One Pradesh’ demanded by the agitating Madhesi groups, saying that Madhes does not exist in Nepal.

“Tarai can be declared the Madhes pradesh,” said Mahesh Chaudhary, an intellectual,

while addressing an interaction organised by Tharu Welfare Council, here today.

Tarai cannot be called one Madhes either on the basis of geography or socio-economic condition, he added.