Let people, not House decide on king: Thapa

Kathmandu, June 29:

Former Prime Minister and chairman of the Rastriya Janashakti Party (RJP) Surya Bahadur Thapa today warned that peace and stability of the country would be “badly affected” if the parliament takes any major decision before elections to a constituent assembly.

Presenting a 19-point political report during the party’s central committee meeting at the party office in Kamalpokhari today, Thapa said the constituent assembly should have the “final say”, not the parliament. “If the parliament takes over the right of the people, the country’s peace and stability would be badly affected,” he warned, indicating to the provision by which the parliament can remove the king.

Saying that democratic forces are becoming weaker, Thapa suggested Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala to take measures and hold talks with the democratic forces to ensure unity among them.

“Or else, chances of authoritarian rule is high,” he warned without elaborating. “It is high time that all democratic forces unite,” he said.

Thapa’s report has also suggested the government to deploy ex-policemen and ex-army men, not political cadres, at the polling booths. “Deployment of political cadres cannot ensure free and fair elections,” he warned, citing the current activities of the Young Communist league.

With the date for elections to constituent assembly fixed for November 22, the government must prove and convince the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the UNMIN that the law and order situation has been improved, he said.

“Merely saying in speeches that law and order situation has improved will not work,” he added. Thapa said that the Maoists should immediately give up the “concept and feeling” of having a parallel government to ensure conducive environment for constituent assembly elections. “The government should have the courage to expose and punish those who are not complying to the peace accords and code of conduct,” Thapa said.

The CWC meet, which began today, will continue tomorrow, party spokesperson Sarbendra Nath Shukla told this daily. General secretary of the RJP Keshar Bahadur Bista presented his report on organisational expansion, while Shukla presented his report on party’s Future Strategy and Election Plan.

Thapa also said some elements are hatching a “conspiracy” against Nepal’s professional media. Thapa, however, did not name the elements.