Madhes agitation will be resolved soon: Koirala

Kathmandu, December 19

Nepali Congress President Sushil Koirala today said the Madhes agitation would be resolved soon as as parties are engaged in serious talks to find a solution.

“A solution to Madhes agitation would be found out soon. We can reach consensus by agreeing to settle the issue of provincial boundaries within three months,” Koirala said at an interaction organised by the Reporters’ Club at his residence in Maharajgunj today.

Stating that amendment to the new constitution was only solution to the problem, Koirala said, “The constitution is a document of compromise and it can be improved through consensus.” He also said that neglect of the issues raised by the Madhes-based parties would not be acceptable to his party .

“Madhes has played an important role in all democratic movements. So, each side should understand the complications faced by the other,” he said, adding that NC was serious about the 11-point demand of the agitating Madhes-based parties. “Madhes-based parties are skeptical if the consensus so reached would not be violated. But I have clearly told them that NC has never stepped back after forging consensus.”

Expressing concerns about the ‘rumors’ on the issue of provisions related to citizenship, Koirala took strong exception to statement by Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in the Indian state assembly.

Asked whether NC is seeking an alternative to the current UML-led government, he said, “It has just been 70 days since the new government was formed. As a responsible opposition, NC would not seek any alternative to the current government.”

Koirala stressed that the responsible leaders should speak responsibly.

Without taking the name of other party leaders, Koirala expressed dissatisfaction towards recent activities aimed at promoting groupism in the party. “Promoting groupism, setting up separate contact offices and using other (unethical) means is inappropriate. For me, nation is primary and position is secondary,” Koirala said.

Stating that the government should improve relations with India, Koirala said, “We will have to face a huge loss if we do not improve bilateral relations with India. The tendency of accusing one another of selling Koshi and Karnali rivers and keeping the country in the dark should be ended,” Koirala said.