Let’s zero in on polls, says Nepal

Kathmandu, July 5:

CPN-UML general secretary Madhav Kumar Nepal today called upon all to focus their attention towards the November 22 constituent assembly election, as it will fulfil the Nepali people’s long-awaited aspiration of shaping their future on their own.

“There is no doubt that the constituent assembly shall be held on November 22 as Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala firmly expressed commitment to the parliament on Wednesday,” Nepal said, addressing a function organised to mark the 56th birth anniversary of late UML general secretary Madan Kumar Bhandari, who died in a road accident in 1993. Nepal said the constituent assembly election must be held “at any cost” because it will be the “only way out” to find a lasting political stability in the country, which has already witnessed six constitutions since 1947.

“The goal of the constituent assembly is to bring an end to all forms of monarchy and to establish a democratic republic in a peaceful manner. The UML will lead the republican forces in the election,” he said.

The people will defeat the parties, which advocate one or the other form of monarchy, he said. Speaking at the function organised by the UML Kathmandu district committee and Madan Bhandari Foundation, UML standing committee member KP Oli urged the government to strictly deal with those groups who spark violence with a view to disrupting the election.

“Genuine issues raised by the people must be addressed while the others who provoke violence and disturb the polls must be strictly controlled,” Oli said.

Oli said that the UML will contest the assembly election “on its own strength” and will not rely on others’ “crutches” to emerge victorious.

Contrary to what Oli said, another standing committee member Bamdev Gautam suggested that the party go together with other political forces — apparently the Maoists — during the polls. Another standing committee member Ishwor Pokharel said that Bhandari’s people’s multiparty democracy must be updated.

Meanwhile, the UML’s central committee members, who aired their views in the ongoing 15th central committee meeting, stressed the need to hold regular discussions among the eight parties to make the polls a success.