NC begins consultations on local bodies’ polls

Kathmandu, May 25

The main opposition Nepali Congress today began internal consultations on whether holding local bodies’ elections was appropriate and possible in November/December as announced by the government.

The NC said that it would make the party’s official view clear after further consultations with concerned experts.

“We discussed various aspects of the local polls. The polls should definitely be held as they have not being held for a long time.

However, whether the government is really serious about holding the polls is still not clear,” said NC leader Prakash Sharan Mahat, who attended today’s consultations held at the party’s parliamentary party office in Singha Durbar.

Many provisions of the existing laws should be amended if the polls are to be held as per the existing structure of the local bodies, Mahat said. As the commission formed to restructure the local bodies as per the new constitution will have to complete its task by March 13 next year, holding of polls under the old structure should be justified first, he said.

The government has not been holding consultations with the NC and other parties about various aspects of the local polls, Mahat said. “In this context, we will hold further discussions with legal and other experts about the possibility and justification of the polls in November/December as announced by the government. Then, we will make the party’s view clear,” he said.

Congress leaders opined during the meeting that the party was committed to hold the polls, but with more clarity, according to Mahat.

Party president Sher Bahadur Deuba, leader Ramchandra Paudel, treasurer Sita Devi Yadav and leaders Prakash Man Singh, Krishna Prasad Sitaula, Arjun Narsingh KC, Mahesh Acharya, Bal Krishna Khand and Prakash Sharan Mahat were present at the meeting.

The leaders also took stock of the progress made so far by the commission formed to restructure local bodies from the commission’s member Shyam Bhurtel.

The government had formed the commission headed by former secretary Balananda Paudel on March 14 and the commission was mandated to complete its task within one year after its formation as per the provision of the new constitution.